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Dear Miss Kopp: 6 Paperback – 12 January 2021
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"Stewart's popular series takes an epistolary turn as the Kopp sisters chronicle their separate World War I adventures via letters....Smart, fun, staunchly feminist entertainment."-- STARRED Kirkus Review "Stewart's engrossing sixth Kopp Sisters novel finds the three siblings, based on actual sisters, separated for the first time, though they keep in touch through letters written from May to December 1918...Readers will eagerly await the sisters' postwar adventures."--Publishers Weekly "Amy Stewart may have gotten her start as a science and nature writer, but she's just as lively and entertaining when she's crafting historical mysteries. In the latest book to feature the fabulous real life Kopp sisters, the eldest of whom was the first female Under Sheriff in the United States, World War I is in full swing and the sisters immediately get roped into quite a few wartime intrigues."--Crimereads "This is an excellent addition to this well written and researched historical series and is highly recommended. Although the novel reads well on its own, reading the earlier episodes is recommended to really get to know these delightful characters."-- Mystery & Suspense Magazine Praise for the Kopp Sisters Novels "Any novel that features the Kopp Sisters is going to be a riotous, unforgettable adventure."--Bustle "An unforgettable, not-to-be-messed-with heroine . . . The rest is kickass history."--Marie Claire "Excels in revisiting a vanished time, place and sensibility."--Washington Post "Amy Stewart uses her skills as a researcher to lovingly excavate the wonderful, entirely forgotten story of the Kopp sisters."--USA Today "A fine, historically astute novel . . . The sisters' personalities flower under Stewart's pen."--New York Times Book Review "Zippy, winsome . . . [A] cinematic story of the [Kopps], the siege instigated by their powerful enemy, and their brave efforts in the face of real violence."--Los Angeles Times "Stewart gives us three sisters whose bond--scratchy and well-worn but stronger for it--is unspoken but effortless."--NPR "Fans of strong female characters will find their new favorite heroine in Constance Kopp."--Cosmopolitan "A smart, romping adventure, featuring some of the most memorable and powerful female characters I've seen in print for a long time. I loved every page as I followed the Kopp sisters through a too-good-to-be-true (but mostly true!) tale of violence, courage, stubbornness, and resourcefulness."--Elizabeth Gilbert --
About the Author
- Publisher : Mariner Books (12 January 2021)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 320 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0358093120
- ISBN-13 : 978-0358093121
- Dimensions : 13.49 x 2.18 x 20.32 cm
- Best Sellers Rank: 443,022 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
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Top review from Australia
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“Dear Miss Kopp, I appreciate, as always, the lively report. We had a look into our files concerning [XX]. British citizen, immigrated in 1914, never been in any trouble to our knowledge, but he deserves a closer look.”
Yes, a lively report. I’ve been enjoying this series with the “Kopp sisters”, three very different women but a tight, loyal family group. The author based the first stories on the real women, especially Constance Kopp, who was a lady cop.
A 6-foot-tall, formidable physical presence, she could chase and bring down criminals as well as her male counterparts. (This is 1918, so she would have been a head-turner, but not in the same way as the very pretty, much younger Fleurette Kopp.)
There’s not much said about the past in this book, but it certainly helps to know the background. The story moves so slowly in the beginning that if I weren’t already a committed fan, I might have quit. But then it picked up markedly and became quite entertaining.
It is told in letters, an epistolary format, which I enjoy but many don’t. The sisters have all done a form of military training in preparation for war, and each are contributing in different ways. Norma is in France with her pigeons, trying to get the army to take them seriously. She is as forceful and direct as ever. They live in dreadful quarters, and she’s had some settling-in issues.
“About these notes: When I first arrived at Fort de la Bonnelle, Captain Buscall mistook me for his secretary and asked me to take minutes of his meetings. You can be sure I corrected him without delay. I do nonetheless keep my own records of my meetings with him. This he objects to, for reasons I cannot fathom, as he was the one who wanted me taking notes in the first place.”
Norma is the adult version of those annoying children who take everything literally. Whether she’s on the autism spectrum, a bit obsessive-compulsive, who knows? She really does give her superiors some curry!
She keeps meticulous notes. This is her argument with Captain Buscall about why the pigeons the soldiers finally released with test messages didn’t behave as intended. She had laboriously typed up extensive instructions (which nobody reads, of course).
“buscall: ‘That wasn’t the only problem.’
kopp: ‘It’s also possible that they released the males and females together.’
kopp: Didn’t you think to ask?
(Buscall shifts around in his chair but makes no reply.)
kopp: ‘A male and female, released together, will not return to the loft but will go off to mate. They must be starved for both food and companionship if they are to return faithfully home.’
buscall: ‘I’ve been starved for food and companionship since I left Fort Monmouth, but nobody’s letting me return home.’
kopp: (This, too, seemed a frivolous remark and not in need of a reply.)”
Later Norma writes:
“but the young men running things over here have never been to war and have no appreciation for the tried and true. If it’s new and electric-powered, they believe it will defeat the Germans through its sheer novelty. If that were the case, we could show them a moving picture and be done with it.”
Fleurette is performing around the country, entertaining people in a musical show. She writes:
“I’m just not sure that by putting on our little show, we do a thing to lighten their burdens or relieve their cares. So many of these boys are marking time — another evening in the auditorium, another day, another week, another month — and then they’re off to France, to live in a waterlogged trench and shoot at Germans.”
Meanwhile, Constance is living in town with the family’s farmhouse closed up for the duration. She writes to Norma, apologising a bit for how secretive she must be.
“How I wish I could tell you the particulars of the assignments I’m given, the cases I’m pursuing, and the small victories we can claim. But I’m not allowed to utter a word beyond the most general statements, even to my family, even to the girls here at the boarding-house. (Fleurette, when she’s home, finds out more than she should — I don’t know how she gets it out of me.)
Suffice it to say that I’m once again crawling around in the dark and disreputable corners of our city and those nearby. The other agents call it the’“sight-seeing tour of the underworld’ because we only glance at most criminal enterprises and then move on. For a souvenir we might pick up an odd scrap that leads to an investigation, but we leave the rest for the local police.”
Slow start, better finish. On to the next one! Thanks to NetGalley and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt for the copy for review from which I’ve quoted.
Top reviews from other countries
In the later stages of World War I, Constance is working for the Bureau of Investigation tracking down nefarious German's in America and their efforts to sabotage the United State's effort in the war. Norma and her pigeons are in France where she battles military hierarchy and unwilling soldiers on a regular basis. Fleurette is traveling with May Ward to military camps entertaining the troops soon to be sent overseas.
The story also relays a lot of good historical events and prejudices. Amy does a fantastic job in her research and peppers in enough to keep things interesting. Spend some time with the Kopp sisters and you won't be lacking for a good tale.
Reviewed in the United States on 14 January 2021