I've heard so many good things about Pam Jenoff's The Diplomat's Wife and it's predecessor, The Kommandant's Girl, but I've never felt like reading either for some odd reason. Both are set during my favorite time, WWII, and both are books that I would probably like. Why wouldn't I want to read them? Well, I finally remedied this conundrum, though probably backwards from how I should have done so. I found a copy of The Diplomat's Wife for two dollars in a used bookstore some time back and picked it up (I mean, it was ONLY two dollars). Now I can say that I'm really glad I did!
Diplomat follows the trials and tribulations of Marta Nederman after the war has come to an end. She's been rescued from the Dachau concentration camp by an American soldier, Paul Mattison, and placed in a DP hospital in Switzerland. Though she doesn't know it at the time, this chance meeting with Paul will shape her life in ways she never could have imagined. There is such a connection between the two of them from the start that they try to spend every single moment together once Marta has recovered and before Paul has been shipped off again. Needless to say their time together is short-lived, only 24-hours in Switzerland and about the same in Paris, but those measly hours solidify what the two feel for each other and lead to consequences and rewards neither of them saw coming. Once Paul has been reassigned, Marta, through a series of circumstances, ends up with a visa to England where she is to meet Paul. Unforeseen things happen and that meeting never takes place. Alone in a country where she barely speaks the language, Marta must make the best of her circumstances. Enter Simon Gold, a British diplomat. What follows is the unraveling of a life never expected or anticipated and the betrayal of and by people she thought she could believe in.