Saturday, March 26, 2011

Heart of Deception-M.L. Malcolm

Heart of Deception
M.L. Malcolm
Harper, Apr 5 2011, $13.99
ISBN: 9780061962196

In 1937, the Japanese attack on Shanghai killed Martha Hoffman. She left behind her Hungarian businessman husband Leo and their seven years old daughter Maddy. Being a spy, Leo needs to find a way to protect his child so he marries and sends his second wife and his child to live in New York. However, after he returns to the field, his spouse could not care less what happens to her stepdaughter. By 1942, Maddy arrives in Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey to live with her Aunt Bernice Mason while believing her father deserted her.

The war may be over, but as Leo seeks to reconcile with his daughter, he needs a legitimate passport to travel to New York. He agrees to conduct one last operation in North Africa for passage to America. However, Leo is unaware that his beloved daughter has found a loving home with her Aunt Bernice. Over the years she turns acrimonious towards her dad for abandoning her and distrusts men in general though she has trysts with different types of males.

Using real persona from the 1930s through the early 1960s, M.L. Malcolm continues the saga of Hoffman (see Heart of Lies) with a strong insightful epic that can stand alone, but clearly enhanced with how the lead male made the decisions that cost him raising his daughter. The story line rotates the tale of the father the espionage agent wanting to come in from the cold and his daughter who over time loathes her dad for abandoning her. Epic saga fans will enjoy this look at three middle twentieth century decades as world events and a sister-in-law keep a father and a daughter apart.

Harriet Klausner

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