Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Book Review Club ~ April

This month I stepped, ever so slightly, outside my comfort zone of women's fiction and YA to read The Swiss Courier by Tricia Goyer and Mike Yorkey. I enjoyed it so much that I decided to select it for Barrie Summy's monthly Book Review Club. Be sure to click on the typewriter if you're looking to add to your TBR stack...


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Most often I go to the library looking for something specific, or in the mood for something specific. Well this book didn't meet either of those specifications. I happened to find it in the New Books section and was immediately intrigued by the blurb on the back. Not to mention the reviews.

I have always been interested in the history of WWII. Last year, I saw Valkyrie with my husband (and had the realization half-way through the movie that things weren't going to end well...Brilliant, huh?) and despite not understanding why everyone but Tom Cruise had a German accent, I really enjoyed it. The Swiss Courier picks up the story after the events of Valkyrie (i.e. after the assassination attempt on Adolf Hitler's life.)

From the back of the book:
It is August 1944 and the Gestapo is mercilessly rounding up suspected enemies of the Third Reich after an attempt on Hitler's life. Gabi Mueller is a young woman working for the newly formed American Office of Strategic Services (forerunner to the CIA) in Switzerland. When she is asked to put herself in harm's way to safely "courier" a German scientist who is working on the atomic bomb out of enemy territory, the fate of the world hangs in the balance.

This book is jam-packed with action, tension, and gripping suspense. It's impossible--even for the reader--to know who to trust. For a time of such intense uncertainty that paradoxically required daring citizens to behave in the most careful and audacious of manners, it is a relief to know that humanity came together in unexpected ways to fight against the atrocities inflicted by Hitler's idea of a Perfect Race. Certainly there was the need for unshakeable faith in God, but there was also a need for ultimate faith in complete strangers--strangers who could just as easily save them as betray them.

I enjoyed the book trailer as well.
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As mentioned above, this book was duelly written by Tricia Goyer and Mike Yorkey. This is the third book I've read this year that has been co-written. Two books by a man-woman team (this one and Wild Ride by Jennifer Cruisie and Bob Mayer) and one by two women (Dangerous Creatures by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl). I have to wonder how that works--what strategies they employ, what parts are written by whom, etc. I've recently heard of several other man-woman writing teams and have to wonder if this isn't the wave of the future...

10 comments:

Elizabeth said...

I love the idea of a book trailer...can't believe I've never heard of it before.

Mike Yorkey said...

Alyssa, as the co-author of "The Swiss Courier," it's tremendous to read your high praise for our World War II-era thriller. There are a lot of plot twists, and readers have been telling us that we've been keeping them up late to finish the last 50 pages. I spent three years, off and on, working on the novel, so there's a ton of research, but it's all woven in the plotline. No one has been able to figure out how "The Swiss Courier" ends yet, so there are some great surprises. You wondered how the writing partnership went . . . Tricia and I plotted the book, came up with the characters together, and then I wrote the first draft, which Tricia edited as I went along. Generally speaking, only one author can face the "blank screen." Anyway, you made my day. Thanks again, Mike Yorkey

Linda McLaughlin said...

This sounds like a great story. I'm also fascinated by WWII, so I'm going to look for this one for sure. How cool that one of the authors made a comment on you post. :)

I wrote one book with a friend and we took turns rough drafting scenes, then we'd edit together. I think each team has to figure out what works best for them.

Staci said...

I think this one sounds like a must-read for me!!

Sarah Laurence said...

How interesting to find other books that are co-authored. I enjoyed seeing the book trailer along with your review. It doesn’t seem like my kind of book, but it intrigues me that it wasn’t your typical read and yet you really enjoyed it. Great review!

Sarah Laurence said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Barrie said...

I've been reading like a fiend lately. But nothing in this genre. So, I think I'll pick up this book! Thanks, also, for the book trailer. And I LOVED how one of the authors responded here!!!

pattinase (abbott) said...

My daughter is co-writing a YA book and a graphic novel. She said it is challenging but fun.

Keri Mikulski said...

Wow!! Sounds like a good one. And it's so nice of the author to leave a reply. Love that! :)

Alyssa Goodnight said...

So glad you stopped by, Mike! I truly enjoyed The Swiss Courier, and there were definitely some great twists and surprises.