Sleeping With The Enemy: Coco Chanel’s Secret War

From Eileen Effrat
Author:  Hal Vaughan
Sleeping  With The Enemy:  Coco Chanel’s Secret War
Much has been written about Coco Chanel, but Vaughan’s book covers new ground focusing on her wartime activities in Nazi occupied Paris.  Drawing on newly released American, German, French, and British wartime documents, Vaughn reveals   Chanel as a willing Nazi collaborator and German Abwehr  Special Agent F-71234 –code name  Westminister.  Despite these activities, when over 40,000 French collaborators were executed after the war,   she escapes arrest thanks to powerful friends like Winston Churchill  and systematically paying off people who might have revealed her true wartime activities. Past glossed over, she returns to France in 1954 to rebuild the House of Chanel  and  to reinvent herself.  She may have revolutionized women’s fashion, but she was a nasty piece of work.  Always the opportunist, what  Chanel wanted, Chanel got.

Resistance: A Woman’s Journal of Struggle and Defiance in Occupied France

From Eileen Effrat
author: Humbert, Agnes
Resistance: A Woman’s Journal of Struggle and Defiance in Occupied France
In June 1940 Paris fell to the Germans.  So begins the   memoir of Agnes
Humbert, a forty year old art historian who joins the resistance.   The
beginning of this memoir details the early days of the German occupation
and her founding of a newspaper in November 1940 called Resistance. In
April 1941 she is caught by the Gestapo and spends time in a Paris prison
where she is harshly interrogated, yet never  betrays  her fellow
resistance workers. She is tried and sentenced to hard labor in Germany.
What follows are barbaric conditions in several slave labor camps where
she never loses sight of her humanity and the needs of fellow prisoners.
She quietly continues her resistance by sabotaging whatever she was forced to make. In April 1945 she was liberated by U.S. forces.  Originally
this book was published in France in 1946 and only translated into English
in 2008. This is a memoir of her reflections on these events. What emerges
is a story of one  remarkable woman with great courage and  determination.

Golden Reads reviews

From Lynne Demestichas:

Joop   A Novel of Anne Frank, by Richard Lourie
An interesting spin on the Anne Frank story.Who turned the family over to the Nazi’s? This book takes it’s reader to Holland, during the war and is gripping when descibing the traumatic lives of a family trying to make ends meet, did they even know of the Franks and their hiding place? Even though it is fiction, the details of war-torn Holland are true and haunting,as every page brings the reader closer to it’s suprising and sad ending.

The Associate, by John Grisham
Having ignored many a Grisham novel for many years..this one was a real fast page turner. With less courtroom action than most of his books, it centers on the college antics of a few boys, which later catches up with them with a cell phone video. Trying to escape blackmail and still hold a prestigious law career, the main character becomes his own private investigator, researching and hoping for and end to what is happening to him by others which could hurt him forever.

Once Were Cops, by Ken Braun
In poetic Irish prose, Ken Braun follows the life of a Guard in Ireland who’s only dream is to become a New York City policeman.Upon getting here and becoming a cop, he is also more than New York’s finest can handle. Having a psychotic personlality, this “new” cop leads a weird trail of murder, that is easily covered up by his daily policeman like routine. Even thought it was no surprise ending, I couldn’t wait to get there…but then wished there could be more.

Bones of Betrayal, by Jefferson Bass
Having never read any of the Body Farm novels, I was unaware of the great forensics that go on in Bass’s stories. In this great tale of the making of the Atomic Bomb, Bass takes us through history from the present, in interviews(all fictional) to the workings of the men who thought up and put the bomb together. A mystery intwined in this story made it really interesting to read. A simple photograph of murder leads our investigative character to try and solve all sorts of nuclear radiation problems.Purely a story, but with truth within the laboratory.Fascinating.