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Publisher's Summary

Maggie Hope is off to California to solve a crime that hits too close to home - and confront the very evil she thought she had left behind in Europe - as the acclaimed World War II mystery series from New York Times best-selling author Susan Elia MacNeal continues. 

“MacNeal reveals the tarnished underbelly lurking beneath the glamour of the Golden Age of Hollywood.” (L.A. Chandlar, author of the Art Deco Mystery series)

Los Angeles, 1943. As the Allies beat back the Nazis in the Mediterranean and the United States military slowly closes in on Tokyo, Walt Disney cranks out wartime propaganda and the Cocoanut Grove is alive with jazz and swing every night. But behind this sunny façade lies a darker reality. Somewhere in the lush foothills of Hollywood, a woman floats lifeless in the pool of one of California’s trendiest hotels.

When American-born secret agent and British spy Maggie Hope learns that this woman was engaged to her former fiancée, John Sterling, and that he suspects her death was no accident, intuition tells her he’s right. Leaving London under siege is a lot to ask. But John was once the love of Maggie’s life...and she won’t say no. 

Maggie struggles with seeing her lost love again, but what’s more shocking is that her own country is as divided and convulsed with hatred as Europe. The Zoot Suit Riots loom large in Los Angeles, and the Ku Klux Klan casts a long shadow everywhere. But there is little time to dwell on memories once she starts digging into the case. As she traces a web of deception from the infamous Garden of Allah to the iconic Carthay Circle Theater, she discovers things aren’t always the way things appear in the movies - and the political situation in America is more complicated, and dangerous, than the newsreels would have them all believe.

©2021 Susan Elia MacNeal (P)2021 Random House Audio

What the critics say

The Hollywood Spy is a swift, vibrant novel that peels back the asbestos curtain on the complex history of Los Angeles, home to heroes and villains, including both homegrown Nazis and run-of-the-mill racists and segregationists during the volatile days of World War II.” (Steph Cha, author of Your House Will Pay)

“Unbelievable timeliness in this gutsy, brilliant look at 1940s Southern California and its bygone ties to Hitler’s regime. Susan Elia MacNeal reveals the tarnished underbelly lurking beneath the glamour of the Golden Age of Hollywood, showing readers that her pen continues to be as sleek and daring as Maggie Hope herself.” (L.A. Chandlar, author of the Art Deco Mystery series) 

The Hollywood Spy is an absolute triumph. Maggie Hope is as irresistible a heroine as ever, and while she’s been to hell and back, her brilliance, empathy, and strength shine through in equal measure.” (Hilary Davidson, author of Her Last Breath

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