| March 30, 2009
Author: Joan Francis
It’s a thriller of a lifetime, Silent Coup the novel. And be advised that Joan Francis has without a doubt written one of the most memorable and eye-opening titles that I have ever read. Joan is the author of a previous Diana Hunter Mystery, Old Poison… and I read that piece also. They’re both mind-numbing in regard to plot, intrigue and down right suspense. As for Silent Coup, it’s professionally written by an author with refined talent. Throughout the entire book, the plot leads to another, and another, then brings the reader to the edge of their seat while working one’s mind as to where it’s all going!
The book has sixty-nine chapters, and 322 pages so don’t expect to finish this title in one sitting although as interesting as this book is, you just might do so.
Chapter one introduces us to the main character, Diana Hunter who has been summoned to North Carolina to settle her great uncle’s estate. At a law office, she’s met by two intelligence and crime commission agents. Her great uncle Bennett Hunter, whom Diana had only met once, at one time had been a moonshiner, but in 1932 he headed to Germany under false identification papers. What was Uncle Bennett’s true reason for going to Germany, Diana wondered. (We’re talking espionage at its best with this title).
Diana has inherited her great uncle’s secret files that are mostly in code. Her job; to find out as much about her great uncle as possible and why he stayed in Germany during the war. It is also brought out that he was a spy. The main problem though, it all didn’t stop at the end of World War II. The US Government is highly interested in her investigative goings-on, and her life it seems is in danger because of what she’s discovered.
Lots of memorable characters fill the pages of this novel. One particular is Otto Brem, a Lawyer who had known Bennett for seventy years. The two met in Germany. Otto wanted to tell Diana what she was about to get involved with, but was there time. Agents were following close by and Diana would need all of her investigative skills to survive. It’s all about living and dying, and this book has a lot of both.
The chapters fly by as your mind is engulfed in information that leads to the next chapter. By the end of the book it all comes together like a finely woven tapestry hanging on the wall in a middle-age English castle. So… don’t get discouraged if you don’t figure out the main plot within the first few chapters. This author has done her homework and definitely knows how to keep the reader at bay, or at least until the final pages of the book.
A little about the author, Joan Francis. Joan is a licensed investigator. She has worked as a newspaper reporter, and spent her childhood in mining towns and camps in the western United States and South America. She has a B.A. in history from the University of Washington in Seattle. Married, Joan now lives in a secluded area of the Tehachapi Mountains.