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Friday, May 13, 2011

Book Review: Heart of Deception by M. L. Malcolm

Heart of Deception by M.L. Malcolm
Book 2 in Heart of Lies series
AKA. Deceptive Intentions
ARC, Paperback, 352 pages
Harper Paperbacks
April 5, 2011
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Genre: Historical Fiction

Source: Received for review from publicist
“Leo Hoffman is a man of many contradictions. He is a Hungarian national with a French passport, a wealthy businessman with no visible means of support, and a devoted father who hasn’t seen his daughter in years. He is also a spy. 
Recruited by the Allies to help lay the groundwork for their invasion of North Africa, Leo intends to do as little spying as possible; he just wants to earn his American citizenship, get to New York, and find his daughter, Maddy. But while Leo dodges death in France and Morocco, Maddy learns the truth behind her father’s mysterious past, and as she matures, this haunting knowledge compels Maddy down her own dangerous path of deception and discovery. 
Spanning the years from World War II to the turbulent 1960s, this sequel to Heart of Lies tells the riveting story of a family struggling with the choices that war forces them to make, and the consequences that take a generation to unfold.”
M.L. Malcolm really knows how to suck you in and keep you wanting to read more. Just check out the way this book opens:
“If the city of Tangier had been a woman, she would have been a whore, and a wealthy one. Brazenly straddling the northwest tip of Africa, she brushed one of her sultry thighs up against the undulating waves of the turquoise Mediterranean Sea; the other unfolded west, perpetually teasing the unquenchable desire of the gray Atlantic Ocean” (Malcolm 3)

Talk about scandalous, huh?! The novel isn’t written entirely in this fashion, but Malcolm creates descriptions that allow the reader to vividly imagine the story that is being told. The plot is also very fast paced where words are not taken for granted and each passage is important to the story.

If you have read Heart of Lies, Malcolm’s previous release, you will notice that this story is more of Maddy’s story than the previous novel was. We still see some of Leo’s life as a spy, but really this is more of Maddy’s coming of age story. As much as I enjoyed reading the very believable evolution and problems that Maddy faces, I still missed Leo’s story. We get tiny snippets of his spy missions, but I want more! I found this story to be slightly less exciting than Heart of Lies but I think this was mostly because the bulk of the story takes place in America in the mid 1900’s, whereas Heart of Lies has more exotic locales and cultures that I had not read about before.

This was a great read with twists and turns that will keep you pouring over the pages until the very end. I am wondering if there will be a third novel because the ending certainly leaves the option open and I would love to see more of Maddy and Leo.

If you would like to preview the story before reading it, why not try out this excerpt of the book?

Reviews of this book by other bloggers:

Buy the Book: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | RJ Julia

Also by M. L. Malcolm

heart of lies
Heart of Lies (Heart of Lies #1)
[My Review]

the cuban connection
The Cuban Connection

Find M.L. Malcolm: Website | Facebook | Twitter

Copyright © 2011 by The Maiden’s Court


  1. I liked this book as well (my thoughts: http://manoflabook.com/wp/?p=1239), great review.

  2. The cover is excellent and I love the description of Tangiers; very visceral and with oopmh. Thanks for great review and recommendation.

  3. Jenny - I love the cover too and thought that she has awesome descriptions!


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