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The Rose Code
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The Rose Code (Hardback)

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The brand-new historical novel from the bestselling author of The Alice Network and The Huntress!

'A terrific book bursting with vivid atmosphere' Dinah Jefferies, #1 bestselling author of The Tea-Planter's Wife

'Wonderful...A hugely satisfying and thrilling read' Fern Britton, #1 bestselling author of Daughters of Cornwall

'Immersive, thrilling and packed with wonderful characters...I absolutely loved every page of this incredible book' Jill Mansell, bestselling author of Maybe This Time

1940, Bletchley Park, Buckinghamshire.

Three very different women are recruited to the mysterious Bletchley Park, where the best minds in Britain train to break German military codes.

Vivacious debutante Osla has the dashing Prince Philip of Greece sending her roses - but she burns to prove herself as more than a society girl, working to translate decoded enemy secrets. Self-made Mab masters the legendary codebreaking machines as she conceals old wounds and the poverty of her East-End London upbringing. And shy local girl Beth is the outsider who trains as one of the Park's few female cryptanalysts.

1947, London.

Seven years after they first meet, on the eve of the royal wedding between Princess Elizabeth and Prince Philip, disaster threatens. Osla, Mab and Beth are estranged, their friendship torn apart by secrets and betrayal. Yet now they must race against the clock to crack one final code together, before it's too late, for them and for their country.

If you loved The Crown, don't miss this riveting historical novel!

Fiction & PoetryCrime & ThrillersEspionage & spy thrillerFiction & PoetryHistorical FictionWar & combat fictionSecond World War fictionFiction & PoetryModern & contemporary fiction post c 1945 Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers Publication Date: 18/03/2021 ISBN-13: 9780008455842  Details: Type: Hardback Format: Books
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Kate Quinn is a native of southern California. She attended Boston University, where she earned a Bachelor's and Master's degree in Classical Voice. A lifelong history buff, she has written four novels in the Empress of Rome Saga, and two books in the Italian Renaissance detailing the early years of the infamous Borgia clan. All have been translated into multiple languages. She and her husband now live in Maryland with two black dogs named Caesar and Calpurnia.

More books by Kate Quinn

Customer Reviews

Three women doing a vital job, the absolute need for secrecy, and the losses of a war are all themes of this powerful novel. When a debutante, an ambitious Londoner and an abused young woman share a billet near the secret Bletchley Park in 1940, they have little or no idea of the outcomes of the secrets they must keep, or the risks they must take. This is a sophisticated novel that moves between the beginning of the work of Bletchley Park in cracking the codes which affected the British War effort so significantly, and the build up to a royal wedding in 1947 that proves to be a landmark in postwar life. Quinn has combined research into the minutiae of the work carried out by the women in the secret setting and life during the Second World War with a powerful insight into the life of women during the mid twentieth century. Her combination of characters in wealthy Osla, intense Mab and obsessive Beth is ambitious one that goes beyond a simple description of women working together; each has secrets and priorities that balance on the edge of tragedy. When one of the women finds herself in appalling circumstances it leads to difficult decisions for many people which has effects beyond the expected. As betrayal and danger emerge in a world beyond Bletchley, all the skills that the women have gained must be called on as they fight to crack one last code. This is a big book which reveals a lot of research, but Quinn has combined it into a compelling narrative of passion and war. I was very pleased to have the opportunity to read and review this memorable novel. The novel swings between two time periods; one beginning in the Prologue in 1947, and another begins with the narrative in 1939. The first establishes that Osla Kendall, wealthy Canadian socialite and writer has just received an encrypted message as she prepares to attend the Royal Wedding of a Prince to a Princess. Eight years earlier Mab Churt is reading a book in order to improve herself, desperate as she is to rise higher than her working class background, cultivating the accent and attitudes that she hopes will eventually mean a better job and a wealthy husband. When the invitation to comes to travel to Bletchley Park she meets Osla, and both are bewildered as to how their work will truly make a difference. When they meet their landlady’s daughter they convince her to join the mysterious work at the Park, and Beth discovers her true vocation, the all encompassing world of deciphering code. As time goes on Osla discovers that even romance can be dangerous in a war, Mab meets a nearly silent man who discovers secrets, and Beth is so involved in the nearly mystical obsession with letters that she has entered a new way of life. As tragedies and secrets begin to overlap, time becomes a huge factor in the lives of young woman for whom nothing will ever be the same. This is the sort of book that offers a really memorable reading experience. As befits a book of secrets and codes, there is so much to discover in its twists and turns, but most of all there is so much to learn about women and some men sworn to secrecy in matters of life and death. I found it to be a profound and somewhat unsettling book, in a good way, that makes some sense of the work actually done in a place which has only relatively recently been open to the public. The portraits of the three women are fascinating in their variety, and I recommend this big book as giving the space and time to learn about their special stories.

- 02/06/2021
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A stunning read with so much substance! Three young women find themselves doing their bit for the war effort in Bletchley Park; with secrecy so stringent that no-one is really sure what anyone else does. Osla is very much a society girl - and one who has the eye of dashing Prince Philip - desperate to prove that she is more than a debutante. Mab hails from the east-end of London and has hauled herself up out of poverty purely by her own efforts - and she's not finished yet. Beth meets the other two when they are billeted in the home where she lives with her parents, very much under her mother's thumb. Seven years later, with the country is anticipating the marriage of our now Queen to Prince Philip, these three are estranged due to betrayal and secrets. Can they work together to crack one final and vital code? Like most, I am familiar with what went on at Bletchley Park during WWII and how important it was to our nation; however, this story is on a different level to any other and much more informative about what life was like for those sent there. From the very beginning, we are made aware there is a mystery surrounding the friendship of our three main characters and this slowly dissolves throughout the book almost imperceptibly as there is so much else to take the reader's attention. A lengthier read than most, there is never a lull in this one; the author has created a marvellous tale and one which would transfer perfectly to the big screen. The characters are beautifully described and come alive on the page. The sacrifices made in the name of saving this country are clearly shown and the mysteries are attention grabbing throughout. I had my suspicions of what was going on in the bigger picture but, not for the first time, I was spectacularly wrong. Very cleverly written, creating a compulsive and enthralling read which absolutely deserves my highest recommendation and all five sparkling stars!

- 18/03/2021
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