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A Treachery of Spies

(Capitaine Inés Picaut #2)

4.16  ·  Rating details ·  1,107 ratings  ·  177 reviews
A Treachery of Spies is an espionage thriller to rival the very best, a high stakes game of cat-and-mouse, played in the shadows, which will keep you guessing every step of the way.

An elderly woman of striking beauty is found murdered in Orleans, France. Her identity has been cleverly erased but the method of her death is very specific: she has been killed in the manner of
Hardcover, 480 pages
Published August 9th 2018 by Bantam Press
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This is the first Manda Scott novel that I have read, and I was completely bowled over by its brilliance. This is the best historical fiction I have read for some time, part of the reason for that is the depth, complexity and insights acquired by impeccable and impressive research carried out by the author on this period of WW2 history in Britain and France. Whilst creating fictional characters, Scott has based them on real life individuals in Britain and France where the French Resistance (The ...more
Aug 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
Manda Scott, in 'Treachery of Spies', mixes some of my favourite genres: crime fiction/thriller, historical fiction and espionage and does so in a way that makes the story completely seamless. The combination of genres works extremely well here. I find I am always dubious regarding testimonials from big names in the publishing world, and here industry favourites Lee Child and Mick Herron have both given glowing reviews of this book. I admit, on this occasion, all of them were correct.

When the bo
I have yet to find words to express how perfect this outstandingly clever, powerful and evocative novel is. It is magnificent. I hid away to finish it and it will haunt me for a long time. If you want to read the definitive novel on the French Resistance this could well be it. But there's so much more to it than that. Review to follow closer to publication on For Winter Nights. Bravo, Manda Scott bravo.
Bill Kupersmith
Jan 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A Treachery of Spies now joins Sarah Helm’s nonfiction A Life of Secrets: The Story of Vera Atkins and the Lost Agents of SOE and Elizabeth Wein’s YA Code Named Verity atop my list the exciting and moving Second World War historical books I have had the pleasure to read. This was one of the very worst periods in human history, but it was illuminated by the highest acts of bravery, sacrifice and comradeship that saved civilisation from the most despicable evil. Imagine being young and possessed o ...more
Oct 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Oct 01, 2018 rated it liked it
Meeting some resistance.

When a once-and-still-beautiful 92-year old woman is found brutally murdered and mutilated in Orléans, the threads of the case go all the way back to the French resistance fighters of the Maquis and their British colleagues-in-arms in 1944.

I tire so of the dual time-frame novel but – sigh - it’s inevitable here in this story of treachery and skulduggery with such links to the past. A huge and confusing cast makes it hard to keep up with the suspects in what is, after all
Adam Lofthouse
Feb 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I find it hard to know where to start with this wonderful book. The beautiful prose? The endearing characters? How about the in depth detail given of life in France in WWII? That or the utterly engrossing plot.
Manda Scott has always written incredible books, none quite as masterful as this though.
The story is a dual timeline, following Captain Ines Picaud in modern day France, as she investigates the death of an old lady, found dead in a car, shot twice in the chest and once in the head, her t
Karen Wellsbury
Aug 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Absolutely wonderful, pulled me in from the first page into a thrilling, involving and passionate account of how the events of the Resistance impact the present.

Alternates between 1944 - 1957 and 2018, triggered by the murder of a 92 woman. Initially I found the story of the Maquis more involving, their passion, intelligence, loyalty was compelling. As well as the tragedy of people killed through war there was also the loss/ unavailability of romantic love and deep deep friendship. However Ines
Caroline James
Jul 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I thought this book quite brilliant. Clever writing and page turning. It took some time for me to get into the plot but I couldn't put it down and found it a fascinating insight to a time in history that may soon be forgotten; cleverly bought up to date with a current day crime. Superb writing by a new author to me and I will certainly be reading more. Huge thanks to the publisher for letting me read ahead of publication. Highly recommended.
Emily Ross
Thank you to the publishers for providing an ARC of this book through NetGalley.

DNF at 21%.

I really struggled to get into this book. I found it quite difficult to follow the plot because of the switches between the plot in the past and the plot in the present. It was incredibly complicated and quite confusing.
Clemens Schoonderwoert
Nov 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This fantastic book is another captivating read featuring Capitaine Ines Picaut, who made her first appearance in the book "Into the Fire" by the author Manda Scott.
I would like to mention at first that the author has once again accomplished an immense feat combining historical espionage actions from the 1940s and 1950s, and deadly events which are now happening in 2018, in a most compelling fashion.
Secondly I would like to say that the story-telling is of a top-notch quality by this very fine a
May 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A novel to rival some of the great Le Carré spy thrillers!

Meticulously researched and suspenseful, this book brings together three of my favourite book categories: spy thriller, police crime procedural and historical fiction. The writing is superb. I loved the characters - particularly Police Inspector Picaut, who gets stuff done and at the same time, is flawed enough to be a real human.

In the vein of Kate Mosse, the novel passes smoothly from the 1940s to present-day and moves between France a
Captain Ines Picaut of the Orleans police force is called to investigate the death of an elderly woman in what looks like a professional execution. She soon discovers Sophie's death is tied up with a bunch of former spies who worked with the French Resistance in WW2. The narrative moves between what happened in the 1940s and the contemporary investigation. Manda Scott is a superb writer and her books always draw you in and make you want to keep reading and reading.
Dec 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An absolutely intoxicating read, dealing with WWII spies, double agents and traitors in a modern murder mystery- with a brilliant female detective at the lead. The women are brave, unique and unforgettable, which is an achievement given how many women feature in this book. Additionally there is a controversial topic discussed at the heart of this novel, and one that I found highly curious when viewing world politics of 2018.
S.J.A. Turney
Aug 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I find it easy, when reviewing Manda Scott’s books, to run out of superlatives. I have never yet been disappointed in any of her body of work and if you are a fan of historical fiction and have not yet encountered her books, then don’t waste time here. Go buy one and get reading.

Three years ago, I read her book Into the Fire with raw, new interest, for she had turned from the milieu of ancient Rome and created a tale in a dual timeline that linked the campaigns of Jeanne d’Arc with a modern poli
Jun 25, 2020 rated it did not like it
After reading Scott's novella A Vengeance of Spies, I was intrigued and driven to try this novel. I'm afraid I found it disappointing. Most of what happened in it felt improbable, the characters were ridiculously qualified by almost superhuman skills and presented a lack of appropriate affect in most of the scenes. It all felt weird to me and I couldn't get into it. Also, I don't like writers who put their agendas before their writing. I'm a great supporter of the LGBTQ fight for rights and equa ...more
Mandy Jacobs
Sep 12, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fabulous read, it did take a while to get into the rhythm of flitting back and forth between the different time periods and the number of characters. Definitely worthwhile sticking with it, really couldn’t put it down.
Oct 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Exceptional. I was hooked from the beginning and astounded at the thoroughness of the research done to get this right. I’m tempted to go back to the beginning and read it straight through a second time.
Sep 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is so suspenseful I’ve been unable to put it down for the last week. Taut and gripping this flashes back to 1940’s wartime France during the Nazi occupation and the role of British spies working with the French resistance then back to 2018 sparked by the violent murder of one of the key french spies. Really enjoyed the characters and kept me guessing until the very end!
Michael Cayley
Jul 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A superb novel of betrayal and violence, reminiscent of John le Carré at his best.

An elderly woman is found shot dead in a station car park in Orléans in 2018. There is identification naming her as Sophie Destivelle but it soon become clear that this is a false name. As the head investigator, Picaut, pursues the cas, it rapidly become clear that the death links back to Resistance fighters and British Special Operations Executive activities during WW2. Much of the novel is set in that period, and
Jul 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's been quite a while since I felt so desperate to read and understand the outcome of a book. With friends popping around last night I pressed hard to find out what happened near the end, before they arrived, but failed. I realised this finale wasn't worthy of such a fevered read, but needed to be absorbed gently to take in the detail. All I can say is, Wow! What a superb read that is sure to impress any fan of WWII spy thrillers!

A Treachery of Spies is told in two timelines - a modern day mur
Nick Brett
Jun 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
Very much enjoyed this, my first book by Manda Scott. I need to read more of her work, including the historical stuff.
But this is a thriller with its roots back in WW2 and the SOE and the brave souls that dropped into France to aid the Maquis in the fight against the occupying Germans. However we start in modern day with a murder, and that murder leads back to a key group of SOE agents and their time in the war.
A French investigation team headed up by female Captain Picaut are investigating the
A.K. Kulshreshth
Oct 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Angela Smith
This is the second book involving the female police detective Ines Picaut. She returns to work after the trauma of events in book one and is thrust into the deep end with grisly murder of a woman in her 90's. As she finds out more about the victim she is taken back to the German occupation of France and a brave group of men and women who fought against Hitler.

A lot of the book is told from war time France with the rest set in the now as Picaut and her team try to find the killer and their link
Greville Waterman
Apr 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is the second Ines Picaut mystery but I read it as a stand alone and was captivated and intrigued by a cleverly plotted and immaculately researched police procedural that turned into a spy thriller as in order to solve the murder of a former secret agent, the present was combined with flashbacks of her past activity throughout the second world war.

Manda Scott can certainly write and also devise a fascinating story that drew me in from the start. I learned much about the activity of the resi
Andrew Scott
Feb 10, 2019 rated it liked it
I enjoyed this, but somewhat less than the hype would suggest one might. The plot was very complicated, which was fine, but needed better characterisation to support it. It got to the stage where some of the names felt more like ciphers in a complex puzzle that one was trying to de-code. And her political agenda at the end... hmm... if her thesis were true and those in control as powerful and evil as she implies, she would not be alive and the book would not have been published.
Thanks Random House UK, Transworld Publishers and netgalley for this ARC.

Manda Scott always amazing me with how seamless she weaves the past and present in her novels. This novel will blow you away. It's one of those books you don't want to end but can't stop reading. The characters all come alive, the suspense is just right, and misery, pain, and joy are felt by the reader.
Christa Jackson
Jun 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
One of the best spy thrillers I have read in a long time. Cleverly written, well researched, will keep you guessing till the very end.
Oct 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Thanks to Kate For Winter Nights for this outstanding read. Suspenseful, face paced & historic. You will stay up all night finishing it as I did. Great read!! ...more
Nigel Adams
Aug 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
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Kindle English My...: A Treachery of Spies, by Manda Scott 3 11 Aug 24, 2019 12:59PM  

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Novelist, columnist, blogger, podcaster, broadcaster and red-green activist, Manda Scott's novels have been shortlisted for an Orange Prize, nominated for an Edgar and dived into the endless iterations of TV adaptations. When she's not writing, she's studying for an MA in sustainable economics and figuring out how to save a world that may, in the end, not need saving.
Her latest novel, A Treachery

Other books in the series

Capitaine Inés Picaut (2 books)
  • Into the Fire (Capitaine Inés Picaut, #1)

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