Genre: Historical murder mystery
Pages: 286, ebook
Published: May and June 2011
Review by Anna
Wehrmacht Major Faust has a dangerous secret: he likes England. But it's May 1940 and his Panzers are blasting the British Army off Dunkirk's beach, so he keeps his mouth shut. When the Waffen SS try to murder their English prisoners of war, Faust helps the POWs escape. Now it's treason, with his neck on the line. Then a friend gets him drunk, straps him into a parachute, and throws him out over Oxford during a bombing run. He's quickly caught. Because he helped type the battle plan for the invasion of England, Faust cannot allow himself to be broken in interrogation. Two German armies depend on it. But every time he escapes, someone rapes and murders a woman and the English are looking for someone to hang. He's risking disaster if he stays, someone else's life if he runs, and execution by the Gestapo if he makes it home. Major Stoner, professor turned British intelligence officer, sees three possibilities. Faust perhaps was joyriding in that bomber, as he claims. Or he's on a reconnaissance mission for the German invasion. Or he's a spy. Stoner must break Faust to learn the truth. Their battlefield is confined to a desktop. Only one of them can win. Someone must break. Someone must make a Deal with the Devil.
“Deal With the Devil” is a historical murder mystery, set during the World War II. Hans-Joachim Faust, a German, finds himself in trouble. He wakes up in the night, not knowing where he is and what’s happened. Soon he realizes that he has fallen out of a plane with his parachute and is currently somewhere in England. But why is he in England and how will he find the way back to Germany? He finds his way to a farm, but unfortunately he is pretty soon captured and brought into custody. What he doesn’t know is that a young woman from the farm is missing and he is obviously a suspect.
Things only get worse for Faust when he learns that the missing girl is found dead. He is now a suspect in a murder case. And that’s not all. Stoner and the other investigators at Margeaux Hall also suspects he might be a spy. Faust does not do much to clear his name by running away several times from the people who is supposed to guard him. The freedom is short lived, as he always finds himself back at Margeaux Hall, back in his cell.
When the second young woman is found dead, the Scotland Yard joins to investigate. Could it be that Faust is innocent? Stoner certainly doesn’t think so. But Stoner might be wrong. Arnussen and Hackney from the Scotland Yard more and more starts to suspect that it is one of the investigators that is the killer. The question is whether Scotland Yard is on the right track or if they need to look somewhere else for the killer.
The book was released in two parts, with the second part being a bit shorter than the first part. The second part begins where the first part ends, with no summary. This means you have to read part 1 in order to understand what is going on in part 2. Personally I don’t really understand the need in separating the two parts. Why not release the story as one book?
J. Gunnar Grey writes novels that are mysterious, adventurous and romantically suspenseful, as stated in the “About the Author” section of the book. “Deal With the Devil” is certainly mysterious and adventurous, with a little bit of romance. She has a degree (MA) in Writing Popular Fiction. She has been a secretary, a legal assistant, a Starfleet lieutenant commander, a stable manager, among other things. She uses the knowledge she has gained from being all those things, in the book.
I liked the second part of the book better than the first part. It took me a while to get into the story and to understand it. The end is really full of action, which is quite good. I do recommend the book for those who like historical murder mysteries.
And something from me. I love the Steph Plum books (and hate them for dragging out), and I am sure excited about the movie