The Black Swan of Paris by Karen Robards

The Black Swan of Paris by Karen Robards

Karen Robards comes to the blog with an historic fiction focused on the players from the OSE and French Resistance during World War II with  

The Black Swan of Paris 

Sisters, parents, spies, deprivations, German officers and suspicion all play a part in this story set during World War II and focused on two major players: Genevieve and Lillian.  Unbeknownst to everyone, while Genevieve is accumulating the acclaims of the occupiers as a singer of great skill and beauty while gathering information and providing her manager, Max, an OSE officer with a cover story: Lillian and her husband Paul, the Baron de Rocheford are leading a cell of Resistance fighters and working to secure the upcoming allied invasion on the coast near their chateau.   

There is no way to explain more of the plot or the twists it contains without spoilers, but the story, one telling of the war years in and around France from the viewpoint of players in the game: the deprivations and atrocities seen, the nerves and dangers faced down, and even the personal and deep-seated struggles that the players encounter that put them into this place in time is a gripping and compelling read.  We meet Lillian: determined, forthright and a true partner to her husband.  Her struggles, her history and knowledge of the area around the chateau and her determination to do what must be done, while protecting the information she knows is an edge of the seat sort of story. Contrasting nicely with Genevieve and the ‘perks’ she receives as a famous favorite of the occupation force, and her unwitting (at first) helping her new manager, Max, with his efforts as a member of OSE working with the Resistance. 

From first page to last, after getting hooked into the book and the multiple questions that arose, I was unable to put it down. Just as I thought the plot was allowing for a break – the tension and danger amped up and I had to keep on.  Unique in the telling, allowing readers into a perspective of ‘perceived collaborator’ from one who isn’t and is jeopardized by both sides, to the closer look at the ‘security measures’ enacted by active participants in Resistance cells, the story demands your attention and pushes you to see the changes in people because of the war and the ‘new attitudes’, as you wonder who will survive to find peace after. 

The Black Swan of Paris by Karen Robards

Title: The Black Swan of Paris
Author: Karen Robards
Genre: Action / Adventure, Dual Narration, European History, Family Saga, France, Friendship, Historic Elements, Historical Fiction, Mystery Elements, Romantic Elements, Setting: France, Suspense, World War II
Published by: Harlequin MIRA
ISBN: 0778388298
Published on: 30 June, 2020
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Pages: 496
Audio Length: 16 Hours: 53 minutes
Rated: five-stars
Get Your Copy: Amazon Barnes&Noble iTunes Kobo Downpour IndieBound GoogleAudibleDirect from Publisher
See this Title on Goodreads

A world at war. A beautiful young star. A mission no one expected.

Paris, 1944

Celebrated singer Genevieve Dumont is both a star and a smokescreen. An unwilling darling of the Nazis, the chanteuse’s position of privilege allows her to go undetected as an ally to the resistance.
When her estranged mother, Lillian de Rocheford, is captured by Nazis, Genevieve knows it won’t be long before the Gestapo succeeds in torturing information out of Lillian that will derail the upcoming allied invasion. The resistance movement is tasked with silencing her by any means necessary—including assassination. But Genevieve refuses to let her mother become yet one more victim of the war.

Reuniting with her long-lost sister, she must find a way to navigate the perilous cross-currents of Occupied France undetected—and in time to save Lillian’s life.

A copy of this title was provided via Publisher via NetGalley for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.



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