From Publishers Weekly
Linked by marriage and the work they do for their countries' secret services, two families, the English Railtons and the American Farthings, get involved in the British government's investigation of a French Resistance network that was betrayed to the Gestapo. "Baffling plot complexity and absence of sustained action or literary grace notes make it somewhat less than a thrilling read," warned PW .
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A complex but sophisticated and rewarding sequel to The Secret Generations (1985). Here continues the tale of those star families of espionage, the British Railtons and the American Farthings, who had mingled through marriage and a shared excellence in spying during WW I and after; not it's 1946, and suave spook Caspar Railton is in huge trouble. A British board of inquiry is looking into his running of Tarot, a Resistance network in France totally destroyed by the bestial S.S. man Hans-Dieter Klaubert, Le Diable d'Orleans. Not only that, but Caspar blames himself for the disappearance of his two nieces, Jo-Jo and Caroline, whom he recruited as couriers for Tarot. To Caspar's rescue comes his nephew, young Naldo Railton. Together with his cousin Arnold Farthing (an OSS man about to be CIA) and Farthing's brilliant 15-year-old operative, Lucas Kruger (known to Gardner fans from the Kruger triology), Naldo slowly ferrets out the truth: the Tarot network had been infiltrated from the beginning, although not by the Nazis. Hans-Dieter Klaubert was, astonishingly, a British agent in place in the Gestapo who kept Tarot running as long as he could but finally had to destroy it brutally when - through a mix-up - his English masters failed to support him. The search for Klaubert continues in postwar Germany, England, and America and turns up an unexpected prize in the person of Ramillies Railton, Caspar's long-lost brother. In the end, Klaubert is cornered in America and Jo-Jo and Caroline turn up safe and well. Ten notches above Gardner's unfortunate James Bond series in entertainment and expertise; a third Railton/Farthing saga seems assured, and is welcome. (Kirkus Reviews)
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