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27 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Deeply moving, yet exciting and difficult to put down
Having seen news items at the time of Eileen Nearne's death and been interested by the speculation regarding her life, I was very keen to read the truth, and if anything it turned out to be more extraordinary than I imagined.

Before I go any further, I must declare an interest here. Susan Ottaway is my sister. That is the reason I have never reviewed any of her...
Published 15 months ago by Ian_O

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Rushed out after the death of Didi Nearne - ok, but lacking depth of analysis or critical sensitivity
Published 19 days ago by Josephine


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27 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Deeply moving, yet exciting and difficult to put down, 4 April 2013
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Having seen news items at the time of Eileen Nearne's death and been interested by the speculation regarding her life, I was very keen to read the truth, and if anything it turned out to be more extraordinary than I imagined.

Before I go any further, I must declare an interest here. Susan Ottaway is my sister. That is the reason I have never reviewed any of her previous books on here, excellent though they are, fearing accusations of bias. However, this book is just so good that having now finished it I can't resist sharing my views with others. What made it more special for me was that while Susan was carrying out all the research and actually writing the book she didn't discuss it in detail with me, so I was able to read it without knowing many of the extraordinary details of what was to come.

As with most biographical books the reader is introduced to the main characters and their family near the beginning and I often find this part of a book slightly "plodding". But not in this case. The family details are so interesting and unique that they only serve to whet the appetite for the remainder of the story, and what a story!

Many people have commented on the very detailed research Susan carries out with all her books and this one is no exception. Building on her earlier knowledge of SOE through extensive research for her book about Violette Szabo, she has undoubtedly become one of the few real SOE experts around today and it really shows in this book. It is very easy to read. The story is fast-paced and includes just the right amount of detail to keep the reader engaged and to feel a real empathy towards the main characters. The whole thing is all the more remarkable for the knowledge that every single detail is true. It is humbling to read of such quiet bravery and sacrifice amid the real horrors of war.

I read this book in a couple of days (it would have been quicker had work not got in the way!), found it sad, moving, poignant, interesting and exciting but above all thoroughly entertaining.

Well done Susan, I think this is the finest of all your books so far!
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An Incredible Story, 12 April 2013
By 
AS (Birmingham, UK) - See all my reviews
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I raced through this book in a couple of days. It's clearly written, fast-paced and a real page-turner. Quite simply, the story of these two remarkable women is an incredible one. A few pages of photographs are included to help put faces to names. A really excellent read and a fascinating account of the very important work that women were doing in occupied France during WW2.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Exemplary, 10 May 2013
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Having just finished this amazing book, I now almost feel like I knew the Nearne sisters. The level of research that Ottaway has put into this book and the detail that is eloquently portrayed of the lives of these brave women during those troubled time is exemplary. Far too many times are stories like these rushed to the presses with little regard to the true facts, facts that we all need to be aware of so we can really appreciate the sacrifices made by the like of Eileen, Jacqueline, Francis and so many others who gave their freedom so we could have ours. Congratulations on a truly wonderful book.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Susan Ottaway, 5 May 2013
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This review is from: Sisters, Secrets and Sacrifice: The True Story of WWII Special Agents Eileen and Jacqueline Nearne (Kindle Edition)
What a wonderful story the bravery and sacrifice of women like Jacqueline and Eileen, Particularly the suffering and privation torture that Eileen endured without giving away her fellow agents. However I was disgusted by the American soldiers behaviour , could they not recognise the difference between a victim and her abusers! she was somewhat emaciated and in poor condition, did they not have the intelligence to see the difference even allowing for the world not having seen the kind of thing the Germans had been doing before. It was fitting and right that the two sisters sacrifice should be written about and recognised.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sisters,Secrets and Sacrifice, 8 May 2013
This review is from: Sisters, Secrets and Sacrifice: The True Story of WWII Special Agents Eileen and Jacqueline Nearne (Kindle Edition)
A truly remarkable book about two extremely remarkable ladies. We owe them so much. Thank you for writing about such sometimes difficult to comprehend situations, and you are quite right we should remember these two ladies and what they both did, and what they sacrificed.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good read, 4 April 2013
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This review is from: Sisters, Secrets and Sacrifice: The True Story of WWII Special Agents Eileen and Jacqueline Nearne (Kindle Edition)
This book had me spellbound from the beginning . A real page turner. Fact that surpasses fiction at its best. Will read again.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars unforgetable and very moving, 20 May 2013
By 
J. Weeks - See all my reviews
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I heard about this wonderful lady on the news when she was found in her flat in Torquay and was moved just by that and the huge funeral that amassed when they discovered her secret past instead of an almost paupers funeral that it might have been. I saw the book was there and just had to read it and was so moved. The prologue gave me tears in my eys net alone the rest of it.
The book was so well written and even with so many code names etc etc all the way through was very easy to read, if upsetting, to think what this lovely lady and her sister, and many others went through, for all of us. Would people do it today ? and keep it all quiet and to themselves - ????
I read the book in a day as i just had to follow it through what had befallen this pair of courageous ladies.
Can't recommend it enough and should be compulsory at school. I am so glad it was published that others might know and follow what they did and sacrificed their lives for - well at least her, her sister faired much better.
A wonderful book but tragic.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic book, 7 May 2013
This review is from: Sisters, Secrets and Sacrifice: The True Story of WWII Special Agents Eileen and Jacqueline Nearne (Kindle Edition)
Anyone interested in reading about WWII should read this book. It tells about things that went on that we're not widely publicised. I for one really enjoyed it and could not put it down until the end and wanted it to go on forever.

Absolutely brilliant book
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Goog read, 7 May 2013
By 
DO DO "DO DO" (Bristol, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Sisters, Secrets and Sacrifice: The True Story of WWII Special Agents Eileen and Jacqueline Nearne (Kindle Edition)
I found it inspiring. It is hard to understand how people gave their lives totally in the war to help others. I recommend it to anyone with an interest in WWII
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sisters, Secrets, and Sacrifice, 4 May 2013
By 
Mrs. A. Rhodes "angie" (england) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Ian O., let me begin by saying you have an amazing sister, I picked this book up, and ummed and arred, over it, then bought it on a whim, and I am so glad I did,
Susan has brought to life, two amazing sisters, who sacrifised their freedom, to keep people safe, My father-in-law, fought in WW11, but never said much, You always here stories, about the men, in the war, but never the women, The story telling, of these two very brave women, had me holding my breath,, fantastic!!
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