Key to Rebecca

Follett, Ken. The Key To Rebecca. New York: William Morrow & Company, Inc. 1980.

Reason read: Follett was born in June.

To set the scene: it’s 1942 in North Africa and the Germans are winning the Second Great War.
Alexander Wolff is a clever yet psychotic man with a deep seeded grudge against the British. Born to look like and pass as an Englishman but with a German past, he has an affinity for helping Hitler win the war. His good looks, deadly skills and unflinching temperament make him the perfect proficient spy, especially when he is able to seduce any woman he wants into aiding and abetting his every crime.
Major William Vandam is a hard drinking yet dedicated military man with a growing obsession with catching Wolff. A lonely widower with a ten year old son, he struggles to balance a home life while always frustratingly one step behind Wolff. When he meets and enlists the help of lovely Elena the burning question is will she help Vandam or be drawn into Wolff’s charming ways? As Natalie Merchant warns, “you’ll fall under an evil spell just looking at his beautiful face” (“Build a Levee”).
At the center of this cat and mouse chase is Daphne du Maurier’s  famous novel, Rebecca. Buried deep within its pages is code designed to alert the Germans to the British military plans.
This is a fast paced adventure across the arid Sahara and down the darkened streets of Cairo. The characters as well as the action keep you riveted. I read it in four days time.

Author fact: Follett also wrote Eye of the Needle and Jackdaws; the latter being on my Challenge list.

Book trivia: Key to Rebecca is based on true events.

BookLust Twist: from More Book Lust in the chapter called “Lines that Linger; Sentencing that Stick” (p 143).


June Jumping

I see June as jumping over spring. We went from low 50 degree temps to mid 90s overnight. Not sure what to make of this abbreviated spring. I’m not sure what to make of myself either. I all but stopped running (eleven miles for the entire month). Even when I was home on Monhegan I didn’t lace up. My only saving grace is I’m to start training for a half in July. Sigh…

Here are the books:

Fiction –

  • American Pastoral by Philip Roth ~ in honor of Father’s Day (AB)
  • Under the Gypsy Moon ~ by Lawrence Thornton
  • The Key to Rebecca by Ken Follett

Nonfiction –

  • Death, Taxes and Leaky Waders by John Gierach
  • Provence by Ford Madox Ford (DNF)

Series Continuations –

  • Cider with Rosie (illustrated) by Laurie Lee
  • Henry James: the Middle Year by Leon Edel (not finished yet)

For the Early Review program for LibraryThing:

  • Upstream: Searching for Wild Salmon, From River to Table by Langdon Cook
  • The World Broke in Two by Brian Goldstein (not finished yet)

Here are the short stories –

  • “Artie Glick in a Family Way” by Joseph Epstein
  • “Executor” by Joseph Epstein
  • “Mendocino” by Ann Packer
  • “Babies” by Ann Packer
  • “General Markman’s Last Stand” by Tom Paine
  • “The Spoon Children” by Tom Paine
  • “Someone to Watch Over Me” by Richard Bausch
  • “Aren’t You Happy for Me?” by Richard Bausch

June Jitterbugs

May was a month of real struggle. Suicides, known and unknown, sucked the life out of my psyche and I had a hard time staying afloat myself. I became obsessed with the sinking of the Lusitania and devoured every documentary I could find. Yet, I was unsure of my own mind’s footing; enough so I couldn’t trust me or myself to stand at Monhegan’s cliff edge. A first for me. Upon returning home I found myself amazed to be so relieved at being landlocked once again.

Here are the books I have planned for June:

Fiction:

  • Under the Gypsy Moon by Lawrence Thornton
  • Key to Rebecca by Ken Follett
  • American Pastoral by Philip Roth (AB)

Nonfiction:

  • Provence: by Ford Madox Ford
  • Another Lousy Day in Paradise by John Gierach ~ June is Fishing Month

Short Stories (June is Short Story Month):

  • “Artie Glick in a Family Way” by Joseph Epstein
  • “The Executor” by Joseph Epstein
  • “Mendocino” by Ann Packer
  • “Babies” by Ann Packer
  • “The Spoon Children” by Tom Paine
  • “Gentleman Markman’s Last Stand” by Tom Paine

Series Continuations:

  • Cider with Rosie by Laurie Lee
  • Henry James: the Middle Years by Leon Edel

Early Review for LibraryThing (maybe – I haven’t received it yet):

  • Upstream by Langdon Cook