Although World War II ended over 70 years ago, the infamy of the conflict continues to inspire some of the most captivating and intricate thrillers in literature. But with decades of novels to choose from, where do you start? We have ten ideas.
July, 1945: Germany has surrendered and America is set to drop the atomic bomb over Japan. But what if the United States had a secret mission to warn the Japanese—and get them to surrender? This daring thriller asks that very question, striking a brilliant balance between what was and what might have been.
Italian-American journalist Christopher de Monti finds himself in Nazi-controlled Warsaw before the outbreak of World War II. Though German officers are eager to gain sympathetic coverage, de Monti soon discovers the terrifying conditions of the Warsaw ghettos and the Third Reich's chilling plans. Before long, he joins the Jewish resistance movement and their courageous last stand.
Related: 7 Thrilling World War II Spy Novels
Eye of the Needle
The fate of the war lies in the hands of Henry Faber—a German spy and ruthless assassin who is otherwise known as “The Needle.” He holds information that will precipitate the Allies' downfall and Nazis' victory...But when Faber meets and falls in love with a lonely Englishwoman, he must decide if his desire for her is worth more than his duty to his nation.
The Unlikely Spy
To uncover the identity of a dangerous but unknown traitor, Britain’s counterintelligence operations turn to the unlikeliest spy-catcher of all: Alfred Vicary, a history professor who is chosen by Winston Churchill himself. All seems to go well until he discovers the Nazis have chosen an agent who is also out of her element: Catherine Blake, a hospital volunteer hell-bent on uncovering the Allies plans for D-Day.
As the Allied troops prepare for D-Day, the Nazis develop a toxic nerve gas that will render them incapacitated. To ensure that the invasion of Normandy goes as planned, two men must infiltrate a concentration camp where the gas is being tested on human subjects. They must destroy all remnants of the gas—and the scientists who created it. Even if it costs their lives.
Blood Red Sea
In 1944, the Allies are finally close to victory against the Germans. That is, until they discover a German U-boat making its way towards a mysterious, Nazi-controlled island. On the U-boat is a uranium bomb, which is currently Japan-bound. Now, the Allied onlookers must do everything they can to stop the U-boat's progress and prevent the delivery...
Related: 8 Books About the War in the Pacific
The Rhinemann Exchange
One of the most feared Allied agents, David Spaulding has been commissioned for undercover deal involving the Nazis' top-secret scientific plans. Realizing that both the sides can benefit from a compromise, they agree to trade German rocket plans for industrial grade diamonds. But the plan goes awry when an underground organization goes to great lengths to stop the exchange.
The World At Night
As Hitler’s forces prepare to invade France in 1940, film producer Jean Casson stubbornly refuses to give up the pleasures of Parisian life. This idealism throws him into danger when the British secret service recruits him for an operation against the Germans. What is meant to be a simple mission turns into something much more complicated, placing Casson’s career, love, and life on the line.
Related: 20 Historical Fiction Books About Life During World War II
It's 1942, and a ship is set to deliver supplies to Nazi forces at a secret rendezvous off the coast of Argentina. Wanting to sabotage the operation, the OSS enlists the help of Clete Frade, a Marine fighter pilot...But when he's asked to gain the trust of the Argentinian father he never knew—the powerful "el Coronel"—Clete realizes he has more at stake than his patriotic duty.
War of the Rats
This one is based on the true story of two master snipers—Vasily Zaytsev of Russia and the German Heinz Thorvald—who struggle to eliminate each other during a six-month battle in Stalingrad. Further complicating their rivalry is Tania Chernova, a daughter of Russian immigrants who then joins Zaytsev’s cadre and becomes his most talented assassin and greatest weakness.
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