The American Agent

The American Agent

A Maisie Dobbs Novel

eBook - 2019
Average Rating:
Rate this:
When Catherine Saxon, an American correspondent reporting on the war in Europe, is found murdered in her London digs, news of her death is concealed by British authorities. Serving as a linchpin between Scotland Yard and the Secret Service, Robert MacFarlane pays a visit to Maisie Dobbs, seeking her help. He is accompanied by an agent from the US Department of Justice--Mark Scott, the American who helped Maisie get out of Hitler's Munich in 1938. MacFarlane asks Maisie to work with Scott to uncover the truth about Saxon's death. As the Germans unleash the full terror of their blitzkrieg upon the British Isles, raining death and destruction from the skies, Maisie must balance the demands of solving this dangerous case with her need to protect Anna, the young evacuee she has grown to love and wants to adopt. Entangled in an investigation linked to the power of wartime propaganda and American political intrigue being played out in Britain, Maisie will face losing her dearest friend--and the possibility that she might be falling in love again.
Publisher: New York, NY : Harper, [2019]
Edition: First Edition
ISBN: 9780062436696
Branch Call Number: OverDrive eBooks
Characteristics: 1 online resource


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
Nov 01, 2019

Plot moves at the pace of treacle. Not one of Winspear's better novels.

Aug 15, 2019

Just finished listening to this book. It was terrific! I seem to love the stories more when they are set in England. I’ve been quilting and listening. The quilt is done, and I finished the book in 4 days. Yes, do read/listen to the books in order

Jul 30, 2019

During London's terrifying Blitz, Maisie Dobbs and her best friend, Pris, both nurses since WW I, share an ambulance ferrying the injured to hospitals. One night, they're joined by an American correspondent reporting on the war to her country. They're impressed by her enthusiasm and willingness to dig in and help. Almost before Maisie can get to bed, she's called by MacFarlane, her long-time government contact, who tells her the woman has been murdered in her apartment. He wants her on the case, along with Mark, an American who got Maisie out of Hitler's Munich in 1938. The details of the murder are kept from the press, as Catherine Saxon was the daughter of a ranking senator who wants the US to keep out of the war. Maisie's frustrated, as MacFarlane and Mark seem to be keeping information from her. She's also in a stressful situation personally because of the upcoming adoption hearing for Anna, 5, a refugee who she's come to love. Anna's as safe as anybody can be in England these days, living with Maisie's father and stepmother in the country. Still, they live on the route some bombers take leaving London, and they often drop “leftover” bombs, hoping to do some damage. One of these falls in Anna's school grounds, but doesn't explode. The children think this is exciting, but it's very dangerous until the authorities can defuse it. When finally Maisie learns who killed Saxon, and why, Mark can tell her why he's been involved. Some Americans, like Miss Saxon's father, want to keep the US out of the war. Further, some, even at the highest level, are pro Nazi. It was part of Mark's job to keep an eye on one of those in the American Embassy in London.

Jul 06, 2019

This book is terrific! I can not tell too much about this book without spoiling the earlier books, but Maisie is asked to help figure out who murdered an ambitious young American female reporter who was trying to get noticed by Edward R. Murrow. It is 1940 in England, and Londoners are enduring the Blitz: nightly bombing runs by the Germans. At worst, there is death and destruction; at best, there is acute stress and loss of sleep for everyone, day after day, week after week. And yet the British soldier on. The United States is not yet in WWII. Mr. Murrow’s radio broadcasts are urgent and compelling. They help Americans understand what the British are going through, how brave they are in the face of great danger, and what is at stake. But many Americans wants to stay out of the war at all costs (even to the point of appeasing Hitler), and one of those is an influential US senator who is also the father of the murdered young reporter.

We sometimes think we live in the worst of times today. I have felt that way myself. But what Londoners endured during the Blitz was much harder than anything we have faced (yet). Having to sleep in cellars every night because there are bombing raids every night; trying to work and function under enormous stress and with very little sleep; risking death or injury constantly; and enduring the loss of family members and friends who are killed or maimed in war or in the bombing runs. Air quality was terrible, and people were ill constantly as a result. This book gives us a sense of what that was like, and how the British made the best of it and kept on keeping on.

I am not minimizing the problems we face today: multiple threats to our democracy, foreign interference in our elections, the extreme impacts of the climate crisis, threats to our health and personal autonomy, etc. They are serious and far-reaching. But we do not have bombs falling on us and around us every night. (Maybe we would take today’s threats more seriously if bombs were falling on us.)

For anyone who is not already following this series, you have a great treat in store! Please start with the first book (called Maisie Dobbs) and read these books in order. You will love them!

Jul 05, 2019

Maisie and Billy take on a case of the death of an aspiring American woman journalist during the Blitz, while Maisie waits for her own court date to adopt Anna. American Mark Scott makes a re-appearance, providing an interesting Joseph Kennedy family side story. One of Winspear’s better outings.

May 24, 2019

Best Maisie Dobbs book so far. She becomes more "human", less robotic with each book. Loved this story.

May 05, 2019

THE AMERICAN AGENT is the 15th installment in this engaging historical/mystery series featuring British psychologist and sleuth, Maisie Dobbs. It’s September 1940 and Londoners find themselves in the middle of the German Blitz. America has not yet entered WWII. Maisie uses her skills as a former nurse to navigate the dangerous night-time city streets as a volunteer in the Auxiliary Ambulance Service while by day she investigates the murder of an American correspondent. Author Jacqueline Winspear once again does a beautiful job of interweaving references to real people and events within the storyline. Her writing gives the reader a real sense of time and place while incorporating themes (journalism’s role and American isolationism) that are equally relevant in today’s world. But it is the humanity and resiliency of the series’ characters, many of whom over time have come to seem like old friends, that keep drawing me back for more. I encourage you to read the Author’s Note at the end, particularly Winspear’s touching explanation of the book’s dedication. If you are a newcomer to this series, I highly recommend reading the books in order from the beginning.

Katherine_A Apr 25, 2019

I received an advanced copy of The American Agent from NetGalley in exchange for a honest review. If you are a fan of Maisie Dobbs, her newest book in the series is not to be missed. I felt like the characters were well developed, as always. I love Jacqueline Winspears writing style. The complexity of the case Maisie is involved in was interesting although set against a horrific time in London during the Blitz. The prospect of a romance for Maisie was also a nice addition. Thirteen books into the series and Maisie continues to be a strong character and role model.

Apr 25, 2019

A good read with an interesting depiction of London during the Blitz, and other historical snapshots (I didn't know Joseph Kennedy, our ambassador to England at this time (and JFK's father) ) was an isolationist and a Nazi sympathizer.) Taken as a whole this was not my favorite Maisie, I felt the characterization was not as strong and the plot a rather scattered presentation. I didn't always have a clear grasp of the characters other than Maisie's family and Billy.

Chapel_Hill_MarthaW Apr 25, 2019

The past 4 Maisie Dobbs books have been rough going, emotionally speaking (actually, I sometimes feel like a masochist for reading this series because terrible! things! always! happen!), but this was a breath of fresh air. Do I still wish Maisie had more of a sense of humor? (Or, like, ANY sense of humor?) 100% yes. However, I thought this particular mystery was really, really gripping and clever, and there were cheerful developments in Maisie's personal life, which also made for a very nice change. I'm feeling more optimistic about the future of this series than I have in a few installments!

View All Comments


Add Age Suitability

There are no ages for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further


Subject Headings


Find it at GCPL

To Top