The devilish parts:
Title: Autumn in Oxford
Author: Alex Rosenberg
Published by: Lake Union Publishing
Publication date: 30 August 2016
Genre: Women’s fiction/Crime&Mystery/historical speculation
Mareli’s rating: 3 stars
Recommend to: Crime&Mystery lovers with hints of historical speculation. Lovers of conspiracy theories might also enjoy this one.
Description: After being blacklisted for having communist sympathies as a student twenty years before, Pulitzer Prize–winning historian Tom Wrought escapes America’s Cold War climate to teach at Oxford. There, he falls in love with Liz Spencer, a beautiful married woman. When Liz’s husband is pushed in front of a train in the London Underground, Tom is immediately arrested for the murder. Scotland Yard is convinced it has its man, as he had means, motive, and opportunity.
This novel had more twists and kinks than a South African “koeksister“. I know all the ingredients and the method to make a koeksister, but I have very limited knowledge into what made Autumn in Oxford. The limited knowledge only derives from the bits and pieces we were fed regarding the Cold War in history class. Take note that those bits hardly make up one koeksister.
This novel was not bad at all, I just lacked the knowledge and the sentiment to appreciate its full potential.
To quote Michael Bully on Goodreads:“ The FBI, CIA, British intelligence, FBI, the wars that Finland was embroiled in from 1940- 1945, the Nazi-Soviet Pact, the execution of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, racism and antisemitism in the USA, Mccarthyism, police enthusiasm for a quick conviction, Cambridge Spies,Michael Foot, all feature. There is sharp political comment at times concerning the history of the American Communist Party, the ill treatment of Black soldiers in the US army in World War 2, claims that Ethel Rosenberg was deliberately framed and sent to the electric chair in 1953, how ‘Doctor Zhivago’ ‘s publication fitted into the Cold War. “
Now this guy knows what’s going on here. I only recognize Doctor Zhivago and I can’t even really tell you why.
I’m trying to browse through my reading history to see if I’ve read any spy novels. Apparently, this was the first one. Yes, I do know who James Bond was/is and I actually watched a couple of the movies with my husband (kind of). No, Tom Wrought is not like James Bond. Except perhaps for the steaming affair he’s got going with a gorgeous and very bright lady. Her husband gets killed fairly early in the novel, so one shouldn’t ponder to much on the fact that she was married. What you should rather ponder on is the fact that if she wasn’t married, there wouldn’t have been much of a story here. Come to think of it, one can almost say that her marriage licence provided the licence to kill. Yes, Tom is presumed to be the culprit. But did he do it?
(I received a copy of this novel from Netgalley)