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Lipstick and Lies Hardcover – 4 Sep 2007

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"Undercover action in World War II histories usually take place behind enemy lines in overseas war zones. Bar Margit Liesche has combined the actual operations of a Nazi spy ring in Detroit with Pucci Lewis, a fictional agent whose OSS training unmasks a plot that could have put American at risk. This is an exciting, beautifully written documented adventure story that combines fact and fiction into an engrossing drama of spy work and the actual infiltration of Nazi agents into mid-west America." --Elizabeth P McIntosh, Former OSS agent of "Lipstick and Lies" "A sharply written adventure/mystery debut with a fine feeling for the period." -"Kirkus Reviews" of "Lipstick and Lies"" """"In 1943, Pucci Lewis, a WASP (Women's Airforce Service Pilot), is recruited by the FBI to ferret out information from a counterspy jailed in Detroit. Pucci, who is part OSS-trained spy, part flag-waving American, and part naive young woman, is a delight...Liesche is a writer to watch."" -Library Journal"of "Lipstick and Lies"" ""Liesche teases out interesting parallels between the 1940s and the present day..."" -Publishers Weekly"of" Lipstick and LIes"

About the Author

Margit Liesche is the daughter of Hungarian refugees who arrived in the States in 1947 following eight years of missionary service in war-torn central China. Weaned on her parents' tales of isolation, escape, and the arduous journey to America aboard a military ship, intrigue is part of her DNA. So when she began plotting Lipstick and Lies, she couldn't help transmitting what she had absorbed into the story's events and characters. She lives and writes in Marin County, California. This is her debut novel. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 9 reviews
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
fabulous WWII espionage action adventure 7 April 2007
By Harriet Klausner - Published on
Format: Hardcover
In 1943 Women Air Forces Service Pilot (WASP) Pucci Lewis flies planes around the country as needed by the military. Pucci also works for the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) as a counter spy insuring no axis rings operate within the United States.

She flies a B-24 to Willow Run aircraft factory near Detroit. There Pucci stumbles on the corpse of a worker when FBI Agent Dante finds her and informs her that the deceased was a Nazi spy. He further explains they are shadowing another factory employee Otto Renner suspected of giving the Germans aircraft information. Finally he drafts Pucci to go undercover as a caught jewel thief sent to prison. Her assignment behind bars is to determine whether exposed double agent Countess Grace Buchanan-Dineen is working for or crossing the Bureau as she is supposed to obtain evidence against her cohorts. The interrelated cases seem simple enough until Pucci ends up at the Cosmos Club, where she wonders if this spy and counter spy scenario consists of no Nazi sympathizers as the adversaries seem to belong to either the FBI or the OSS.

LIPSTICKS AND LIES is a fabulous WWII espionage action adventure that gives the audience a taste of the era from a rarely seen focus; that of a WASP. Besides a fabulous spy thriller and a vivid look at Detroit in 1943, the tale also provides a fascinating undercurrent as the two federal agencies compete rather than cooperate as it is heresy to collaborate; apparently based on the 9/11 Commission that rivalry had not changed as of September 2001 except the OSS morphed into the CIA. Margit Liesche provides a soaring historical thriller that takes off at the onset and never lands until the final quite interesting especially because of who's who confrontation.

Harriet Klausner
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4 and a half Stars... 21 Aug. 2012
By anders tron-haukebo - Published on
Format: Paperback
I understand that this was ML's first novel, I have to believe she had some previous writing experience due to the 'color' she put into her characters.
The plot bogged down a bit in the middle (I agree with what PWeekly said), but it picks up the tempo in the last few chapters starting with a rather miraculous de-coding of a German secret message.

1 criticism:

I believe her use of the term 'Medical Examiner' was an anachronism (shouldn't this have been "Coroner" for those times?).
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
A Fascinating Revelation of Counter-Espionage in 1943 19 Jan. 2011
By Harry V. Peters - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I found this book a well-written novel based upon an actual investigation and conviction of Countess Grace Dineen in Detroit, Michigan. It holds your attention from the beginning, as I did not put it down, until,I had finished reading it. I found the factual events substantially accurate, as I remember them from 1943. Literary privilege served only to make the novel a fascinating read. Its five-star rating is well deserved. During that period I was a federal investigator.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
I Enjoyed This Book 13 Jan. 2013
By Pamella - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I usually listen to audio books, but I couldn't find this one in audio, so I downloaded it to my Kindle app for my Droid. I'm almost done with the book, and I've been enjoying it. I'm going to go ahead and get the second book.
A different perspective on WWII, from the home front 29 Sept. 2007
By PJ Coldren - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Readers who enjoy strong female characters and mysteries with a historical setting will find LIPSTICK AND LIES a welcome addition to their library. Pucci Lewis is a gutsy young woman in an unusual position, making the most of her opportunities.

It is 1943, and there's a war on. Pucci Lewis is one of the elite Women Air Force Service (WASP) pilots, usually found ferrying supplies to wherever they are needed. She's been tapped by the FBI to be an undercover agent, an unusual selection because she doesn't speak any foreign languages. This fact is offset by her ability to go just about anywhere as a WASP.

Right now she's in Detroit, at the Willow Run aircraft factory; there's been some evidence of German spying going on. The first thing the FBI does is send Pucci to jail; she's supposed to worm her way into the good graces of Grace Buchanan-Dineen, a countess-counteragent suspected of being a triple agent.

The FBI agent in charge of this case is Dante Cavaradossi, a very attractive single man who may or may not be putting the moves on Pucci. When the jail plan doesn't work out, he moves Pucci to the prestigious Cosmos Club where she can mingle with the upper crust women who flocked to hear Buchanan-Dineen speak. Pucci is quite startled to run into one of her cohorts from espionage training. It would seem that the right hand of the FBI doesn't know everything that the left hand of the Army is doing.

By the end of LIPSTICK AND LIES, we know who the bad guys are and what their motivations are. We also have a nice portrayal of a part of the war that few think of, and of the role that women played in that war.

Liesche gives Pucci quite a lot to do, especially considering she's a woman. Pucci is ambitious and more than willing to take on any task she's set, particularly if someone seems to think it's beyond her abilities. Not an unlikely characteristic for a woman pilot in the early 40's. Sometimes Pucci is just a little too trusting, which makes for great plotting. It will be interesting to see where Liesche takes Pucci in future books.
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