Madame Fourcade's Secret War - Lynne Olson
The story of Madame Fourcade is amazing, and the book is intriguing, thought provoking, important, and beautifully written.
The book cover points out that Madame Fourcade was the head of a major resistance network in France during World War II. That network provided significant intelligence information to the Allies during the struggle against Nazi Germany, and many members of the network lost their lives doing so. Yet few people outside France have heard of Marie-Madeleine Fourcade, and even in France she is not widely remembered.
Madame Fourcade was a strong and intelligent woman. She had to be to run a spy network, especially at a time when her first task was to convince potential recruits to the network that a woman was capable of being in charge. Many were reluctant to believe that a woman could be the head of resistance network or to take orders from a woman, but they learned what she was capable of doing. Madame Fourcade should be a model for women who want to prove that they can do a “man’s job.”
The story is complex and fascinating, and the book is thoroughly researched and well documented. Besides that, it is a well told, gripping story that captures both the facts and the emotions of the participants. This is not a dry presentation of history, it is an incredible story that happens to be true.