December ’41: A World War II Thriller

Brilliance Audio. Jun. 2022. 13:35 hrs. ISBN 9781978649194. $29.99. THRILLER
In 1941, secret Nazi agent Martin Browning is preparing to make a train journey from Los Angeles to Washington, DC, in order to assassinate Franklin D. Roosevelt, thereby throwing the American war effort into chaos. Along for the ride is aspiring actress Vivian Hopewell, who is pretending to be Browning’s wife in order to get back home to Maryland. FBI agents are also aboard. As relationships form and murders occur, eventually the action moves off the train and into Washington, DC, where FDR’s life hangs in the balance. Narrator Robert Fass is very good at giving each character a distinct voice and accent, and his impression of Roosevelt is right on target. The brisk timing of the narration and crisp characterization help move the plot forward through each character’s recounting. However, it takes quite a while before the suspense really grabs the reader as the author uses several spy drama tropes.
VERDICT Reminiscent of the thrillers of the 1980s, such as those written by Frederick Forsyth and Ken Follett, this is a supplemental choice for public libraries who cannot keep enough World War II spy novels on the shelf.
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