HarperCollins, Sep 2003, 26.95, 722 pp.
RCAF officer Jack McCarthy, his wife Mimi, and their two children twelve years old Mike and eight-year old daughter Madeleine have been stationed in West Germany for years. However, in 1962 Jack is been reassigned to the Centralia Air Force Base in Ontario. The family quickly adjusts and is happy to be home.
Jack is assigned the job of safeguarding a Soviet defector until the scientist can be smuggled into the U. S. to work on the space program. However the ethical Jack is shocked tothe core when he learns that his ward is a former Nazi who used slaves to work on the Nazi rocket program. While Jack's morality is tested on a global scale, fourth grade school teacher Mr. March molests students in his class including Madeleine. Soon one of them is murdered. Twenty years later Madeline remains haunted by the homicide and seeks the truth, but uncovers more that she wanted when she realizes the duplicity of her hero, her father.
The fascinating story line starts very slow as Ann-Marie MacDonald paints the scenario of a military post during the height of the Cold War. As the tale takes off it turns darker raping innocence by betraying values. Globally it is America sheltering Nazi war criminals to work on the space program; with family it is secrets that Madeleine and Jack ironically keep from one another that when revealed undermines their relationship. The climax is incredible, as the audience will stop to reconsider all that previously past is not what it seems. This historical novel is great work by a multitalented superstar.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner