This is book number 17 in the Maisie Dobbs series.
In the latest installment of the New York Times bestselling series, a series of possible attacks on British pilots leads Jacqueline Winspear's beloved heroine Maisie Dobbs into a mystery involving First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt.
October 1942. Jo Hardy, a 22-year-old ferry pilot, is delivering a Supermarine Spitfire—the fastest fighter aircraft in the world—to Biggin Hill Aerodrome, when she realizes someone is shooting at her aircraft from the ground. Returning to the location on foot, she finds an American serviceman in a barn, bound and gagged. She rescues the man, who is handed over to the American military police; it quickly emerges that he is considered a suspect in the disappearance of a fellow soldier who is missing.
Tragedy strikes two days later, when another ferry pilot crashes in the same area where Jo’s plane was attacked. At the suggestion of one of her colleagues, Jo seeks the help of psychologist and investigator Maisie Dobbs. Meanwhile, Maisie’s husband, a high-ranking political attaché based at the American embassy, is in the thick of ensuring security is tight for the first lady of the United States, Eleanor Roosevelt, during her visit to the Britain. There’s already evidence that German agents have been circling: the wife of a president represents a high value target. Mrs. Roosevelt is clearly in danger, and there may well be a direct connection to the death of the woman ferry pilot and the recent activities of two American servicemen.
To guarantee the safety of the First Lady—and of the soldier being held in police custody—Maisie must uncover that connection. At the same time, she faces difficulties of an entirely different nature with her young daughter, Anna, who is experiencing wartime struggles of her own.
Jacqueline Winspear is the author of the New York Times bestsellers The Consequences of Fear, The American Agent, and To Die but Once, as well as thirteen other bestselling Maisie Dobbs novels and The Care and Management of Lies, a Dayton Literary Peace Prize finalist. Jacqueline has also published two nonfiction books, What Would Maisie Do? and a memoir, This Time Next Year We’ll Be Laughing. Originally from the United Kingdom, she divides her time between California and the Pacific Northwest.
“A superb combination of mystery, thriller, and psychological study with an emphasis on prejudice and hatred.” — Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“In A Sunlit Weapon, Maisie’s pluck, intelligence and moral fortitude are on full display.” — Washington Post
“Winspear weaves the many components of this mystery together skillfully to create another riveting entry in this long-standing series.” — Library Journal
“Over 16 novels spanning three decades, Winspear’s Maisie Dobbs has lived. In real life, her quiet bravery, compassion and dogged pursuit of the truth would have made her one of the Greatest Generation, a lesson in survival under the grimmest circumstances. The lessons are hard-won in The Consequences of Fear, set in the fall of 1941 but no less relevant today…. Fans and newcomers to the series will root for Dobbs and the other well-drawn characters.” — Los Angeles Times on The Consequences of Fear
“Outstanding…. Maisie and her loving family of supporting characters continue to evolve and grow in ways sure to win readers’ hearts. Winspear is writing at the top of her game.” — Publishers Weekly, starred review on The Consequences of Fear
“Fast-paced… Winspear never sugarcoats the horrors of war, and alongside the camaraderie shown by these characters and the Londoners surrounding them deliver terrible truths that must be endured…. also recommend it as a less- weighty read-alike for Anthony Doerr’s All the Light We Cannot See.” — Booklist, starred review on The Consequences of Fear
"A fast-paced tale of mystery and spycraft whose exploration of inner doubts and fears makes it much more." — Kirkus on The Consequences of Fear
“Series fans will find the characters’ personal development gratifying.” — Publishers Weekly
“’Sunlit’ sheds light on the United States' slow entry into the war, as well as the British response to that, while taking Maisie in bold new directions, personally and professionally.” — Star Tribune
“There’s a lot going on in the seventeenth Maisie Dobbs mystery starring the intrepid investigator… Winspear manages the multifarious narratives with aplomb.” — Booklist
“No one writes historical mysteries quite like Jacqueline Winspear, and her latest Maisie Dobbs novel should be a fitting continuation of the series, this one featuring a drop-in from none other than Eleanor Roosevelt (and we all know how good Winspear is at writing strong women with wit and verve).” — CrimeReads
“With so many strands … it is hard to anticipate a satisfying conclusion. But Winspear pulls it off brilliantly.” — Daily Mail, UK
“Profoundly humane and unflinchingly honest, A Sunlit Weapon marks another stellar installment in Winspear’s luminous body of work.” — The Free Lance Star