“The Huntress,” by Kate Quinn, is a historical fiction novel about World War II set in the war years and the late 1940’s. The book, an easy read, deftly floats between the time period and is told through the eyes of three very different characters who deliver their stories in alternating chapters.
Ian Graham is a British war correspondent who’s witnessed the horrors of Omaha Beach and covered the Nuremberg Trials. After the trials, Ian no longer has a desire to write and becomes a “Nazi hunter.” Ian and Tony Rodomovsky, a 26-year-old American soldier, work together in a small office in Vienna searching for former Nazis hiding out in Europe.
Nina Markova is my favorite character. She grew up on the icy shores of Lake Baikal in Siberia. Nina learned at a young age to duck her father’s frequent blows and fend for herself. At 19, she saw her first airplane and decided to go to Moscow to become a pilot. Nina succeeds in becoming a Night Witch, a Russian bomber in an all female regiment. Many of the chapters about Nina are flashbacks to her Night Witch days during the war.
Jordan McBride is a 17-year-old post-World War II girl who helps in her father’s antique shop in Boston. Jordan always carries a camera and dreams of becoming a photographer. Jordan’s widowed father marries Annaliese, a soft-spoken German widow. His new wife has secrets and a young daughter named Ruth. Jordan is suspicious of her stepmom especially after the accidental death of her father. Jordan begins to investigate and discovers Annaliese has been lying.
These characters become intertwined as the Nazi hunt moves from Vienna to Boston in the hunt for “die Jagerin,” The Huntress. Along with being a story of intrigue and adventure, “The Huntress” includes a love affair. The narrative threads of this pageturner are nicely woven together and flow effortlessly. Quinn’s research is evident in her many details about the war. The author notes also are very interesting and brought reality and authenticity to this historical fiction novel. I enjoyed this read and will add Kate Quinn to my list of preferred authors.