Thursday, May 23

Audiobook Review: Smoke Signal by Marie Benedict & Kate Quinn

Author: Marie Benedict & Kate Quinn
Narrator: Nicola Barber & Saskia Maarleveld
Title: Smoke Signal
Genre: Historical Fiction, Short Story, Mystery, Thriller, Novella
Format: Audiobook
Published: February 11, 2021
Where I got It: Audible

Recruited as a code breaker of enemy ciphers, ex-debutante Osla Kendall spends her days translating Axis military messages and her nights reading mystery novels. When Osla gets her hands on Agatha Christie's most recent work, N or M?, a mysterious signal within its pages catches her eye, and she and her eccentric book club get in touch with the famous but reclusive writer. Osla's outreach is a welcome distraction for Agatha, who feels restless and underestimated toiling away in a London pharmacy while men like her husband can contribute to the war effort from the front lines.

So begins the story of an unlikely friendship and the secrets that bind two brave women embroiled in war. Based on true events and told by two beloved authors and champions of history's heroines, Smoke Signal is a breathtaking novella of espionage and the unforgettable women who risked everything to serve their country.

To learn more about Osla Kendall and Agatha Christie, see Marie Benedict's The Mystery of Mrs. Christie, a novel of Agatha Christie's disappearance in 1926, and Kate Quinn's forthcoming The Rose Code, a novel of the female code breakers of Bletchley Park.

Randomly stumbled upon this while searching for something else. It caught my eye...1) the cover and 2) the 2nd author of the book...Kate her! So why not?

Osla was recruiter as a code-breaker. She spends her days translating Axis military messages and her nights reading mystery novels. While reading one of the newest Agatha Christie mysteries...something catches her eye. She turns to her fellow book club members to track down the elusive author. On the other side, Agatha has been feeling restless so when Osla reaches out it is a welcomed distraction. Together these two ladies will work together to serve their country. This is based on true events. 

This has everything I love. A great author. A great narrator. Mystery. War. Friendship. Spies! took me forever to actually attach myself to the story. At one point I left the room and realized I didn't pause it. I wasn't truly paying attention. I rewound it and made myself listen. 

After a certain point I found myself getting involved and caring, but it took at least to the halfway point when things were cooking.

Honestly? I think this just needed one narrator. I love Saskia Maarleveld and she was perfect. The other narrator didn't really hit it for me. The voices didn't match. and I just didn't....vibe. 

I still need to read 'The Rose Code' by Kate Quinn. Osla is in that book! Osla was a gem so I def need to get my rump to read where it all began. 

The ending? I simply ADORED it. It was nice. It was perfection. 

All-in-all, this was a mixed bag for me. The things I liked...I LOVED. There were things I could've been okay without. Honestly, the beginning just didn't catch me. I kept pushing because I wanted to really like this. Luckily I did push on because I loved the last half so much. I shall stamp this with.....3 stars. The last half and Saskia gave this life. 


- Audiobook #23
- Cloak and Dagger - #12


Mary Kirkland said...

That does sound like it would be good.

Jen Twimom said...

Oh... based on real history? Sounds interesting. Too bad the storytelling and narration fell a bit flat.

Blodeuedd said...

Quinn is always good.
I would have been a terrible codebreaker

Carole Rae said...

Mary, it was fun!

Jen, right!? I was shocked.

B, yess love Quinn