The Amber Shadows
During WWII, Honey Deschamps diligently works at an office in Bletchley Circle, transcribing decrypted signals from the German army. The work can be tedious at times, but Honey enjoys solving puzzles. When rumors of loot being stolen from the Amber Room in Leningrad begin circulating the office, Honey doesn’t really pay attention at first. But then she begins receiving mysterious packages in the mail with small pieces of amber tucked inside. As more packages arrive, Honey is reminded of her brother and the stories he would tell to explain the disappearance of their father. She also realizes that the pieces form code. She sets her mind to solving the code and discovering the reason why these pieces are being sent to her. Could the sender be her brother, or her long-lost father? Or the strange man with the dog who hand-delivered the first package? Or is it a test from the Home Office to test her loyalty? The further Honey digs, the more confused she gets, and the more dangerous it becomes.
Suspense, mystery, and intrigue are high in this novel. Ribchester easily transports readers to the past, cleverly hiding clues throughout bits of the story, and creating quite a number of twists and turns throughout. Bletchley Circle comes alive, as do the feelings of fear, distrust, and paranoia of the times. Readers will be kept guessing, and the ending is a surprise. Recommended.