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Friday, 18 April 2014

Review: The Girl Who Fell From the Sky

Author: Simon Mawer

Release date: UK paperback 9th May 2013
Genre: Historical Fiction / Spy novel
Target audience: Adult
Publisher: Little Brown

The Girl Who Fell from the Sky is a spy story. Secrets, betrayals, multiple identities, they’re all here.
Marian Sutro is a young woman who is part English, part French and is recruited by a mysterious British secret service organisation for her skill in languages. Immediately Marian knows that she’ll sign herself over to them; she’s the sort of girl who enjoys risk.

I read this book very quickly and I did enjoy it. I couldn’t help but be reminded of Code Name Verity. The subject matter is incredibly similar. But that was a more literary take on spying than The Girl who Fell from the Sky which is more of an easier but less dramatic read.

Marian Sutro is an interesting character. She recognises that she has more than one identity and that she is essentially playing at being a spy. She takes on many different roles – she is a lover, comforter, daughter, sister, friend, and ultimately, she is a spy. She undergoes rigorous training in rugged Scotland and then she parachutes into France to complete the work she’s been prepped for. But nothing can really prepare her for the risks she’ll face.

Though this was easy to read, it is also easy to forget. There isn’t really anything new in this book. It doesn’t have a unique voice or anything that stands out to add to the subject matter. I’m not a particular fan of spy thrillers and I wouldn’t have read this if it wasn’t a book chosen for the staff book group.

I liked that fact that the ending was fitting of the story and of Marian. Overall, not a bad read but it certainly won’t stay with me.

Source: Bought from WH Smith.

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