The Rose Code
The Rose Code
by: Kate Quinn
Publication date: March 9, 2021 by William Morrow
Genre: Historical Fiction, WWII
Rating: 5 Stars ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
1940. As England prepares to fight the Nazis, three very different women answer the call to mysterious country estate Bletchley Park, where the best minds in Britain train to break German military codes. Vivacious debutante Osla is the girl who has everything—beauty, wealth, and the dashing Prince Philip of Greece sending her roses—but she burns to prove herself as more than a society girl, and puts her fluent German to use as a translator of decoded enemy secrets. Imperious self-made Mab, product of east-end London poverty, works the legendary codebreaking machines as she conceals old wounds and looks for a socially advantageous husband. Both Osla and Mab are quick to see the potential in local village spinster Beth, whose shyness conceals a brilliant facility with puzzles, and soon Beth spreads her wings as one of the Park’s few female cryptanalysts. But war, loss, and the impossible pressure of secrecy will tear the three apart.
1947. As the royal wedding of Princess Elizabeth and Prince Philip whips post-war Britain into a fever, three friends-turned-enemies are reunited by a mysterious encrypted letter–the key to which lies buried in the long-ago betrayal that destroyed their friendship and left one of them confined to an asylum. A mysterious traitor has emerged from the shadows of their Bletchley Park past, and now Osla, Mab, and Beth must resurrect their old alliance and crack one last code together. But each petal they remove from the rose code brings danger–and their true enemy–closer…
My Thoughts: Yet again Kate Quinn delivers a triumph! Quinn’s writing style and her character development make every book she writes a journey for the reader. She perfectly captures the mood. In this latest work, Quinn offers three distinct personalities; Osla the social debutante, Mab the fierce determined one, and Beth the quiet unassuming one. The book provides readers with several focus points. Of course there is the intensity of decoding secrets while keeping secrets during WWII. There is the escapism of a royal wedding, falling in love, dancing, dining, Bletchley Bletherings, and the Mad Hatters book club. Last but not least of course, is the treachery of deceit that lands a someone in a sanitorium. The amount of research that went into this novel is obvious when reading the headache inducing explanations of the rods, cords, lobsters, and everything else surrounding the enigma and bombe machines. To say that Bletchley Park was a well oiled machine is an understatement. While we may never know all of what happened at BP, I know that the author surpassed my expectations with the plot twists in this book. You won’t see them coming at all! An intense read that will have you on the edge of your seat.
I received a copy of this title from both NetGalley and a giveaway by the author.