Sunday, June 6, 2010

The Swiss Courier, by Tricia Goyer and Mike Yorkey

Swiss Courier, The: A Novel

Gabi Mueller is a young girl living in Switzerland, with a Swiss mother and and American father, secretly working for the Office of Strategic Services.  After realizing that no one can be trusted, and nothing is as it seems, she is given a very dangerous mission, to act as a courier to transport precious cargo in the form of Joseph Engel.  Engel is a German scientist who was born to Jewish parents, and is now wanted by the Gestapo.  Gabi must make sure she gets him out of enemy territory, but will she be able to save him?  And how will she know who to trust along the way?

I tend to be fascinated by anything set during World War II, so I was excited when I started reading this book.  Unfortunately, it was not really what I expected.  I found the plot to be slow, and hard to follow in the beginning.  A lot of time what used setting up the situation with Gabi, showing who she could and could not trust, and while I understood that, at times it plodded along.  Also, the dialogue often slipped into German, with no translation.  As a reader who does not speak German, I found this frustrating, and was not sure what purpose it served other than to show off the foreign language skills of the author.

Once the story really got rolling, I was more interested in the book.  However, I felt that some of the information at the end was just thrown away.  For example, Gabi is following the orders of two higher agents, Pascal and Jean-Pierre.  When their identities were revealed, it was very anticlimactic.  I did enjoy the substory of Gabi's romantic interests, and watching her grow in that aspect. 

I think that this book would be very appealing to readers who enjoy stories of espionage.  Fans of authors like Ian Flemming would love this, especially fans looking for something with more action and less sexuality.  Since this is a Christian book, that is exactly what you get, lots of action in the espionage arena.  If you enjoy books set in this era with more character driven or romantic story lines, I am not sure this would be a good fit for you, and would instead recommend Queen of Hearts by K Dawn Byrd.