By Sarah Helm
From an award-winning journalist comes this real-life cloak-and-dagger story of Vera Atkins, certainly one of Britain’s foremost mystery brokers in the course of international battle II.
As the top of the French element of the British specific Operations government, Vera Atkins recruited, knowledgeable, and mentored distinct operatives whose task was once to prepare and arm the resistance in Nazi-occupied France. After the conflict, Atkins courageously devoted herself to a deadly look for twelve of her such a lot adored girls spies who had long past lacking in motion. Drawing on formerly unavailable assets, Sarah Helm chronicles Atkins’s remarkable existence and her singular trip throughout the chaos of post-war Europe. Brimming with intrigue, heroics, honor, and the horrors of warfare, A existence in Secrets is the tale of a grand, elusive lady and a journey de strength of investigative journalism.
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Extra resources for A Life in Secrets: Vera Atkins and the Missing Agents of WWII
Perhaps I was not quite what the video intercom had led her to expect. Now ushering me inside, she stooped somewhat and leant heavily on a stick. As she turned to lead the way, I found myself staring at a perfect roll of white-grey hair, tucked under at the nape of her long neck. Vera Atkins was a woman who had preserved her good looks remarkably well, and at nearly ninety she was still almost pretty. Tall despite the stoop and poised despite the wobble, she led the way into the large entrance hall, where a portrait of her hung on the wall.
You might find it in anyone. You just don't know where to look. Their motivations were all different. Many women made good couriers or had worked in coding and had fingers like pianists—they made good radio operators. They might be artists or fashion designers. Why not? They had to be self-reliant, of course. Physical appearance was important. They were all attractive women. ” I asked, mentioning the woman wireless operator whose story I had always found most compelling. Noor Inayat Khan, alias Madeleine, had worked with Prosper, the biggest F Section circuit.
Furthermore, Nora had a special bond with her elder brother, Vilayat. By early May, when the decision was taken to send Nora to France, Vera's concerns had been allayed, but just as final preparations for the agent's departure were beginning, her anxieties were once again aroused. In midmonth Nora parted from her family in London for the last time. She had been staying at a country house in Buckinghamshire, a place where agents had a final chance to adjust to their new identities and consider their missions before departure.