Code Name
The true story of the woman who became WWII's most highly decorated spy The year is 1942, and World War II is in full swing. Odette Sansom decides to follow in her war hero father’s footsteps by becoming an SOE agent to aid Britain and her beloved homeland, France. Five failed attempts and one plane crash later, she finally lands in occupied France to begin her mission. It is here that she meets her commanding officer Captain Peter Churchill.As they successfully complete mission after mission, Peter and Odette fall in love. All the while, they are being hunted by the cunning German secret police sergeant, Hugo Bleicher, who finally succeeds in capturing them. They are sent to Paris’s Fresnes prison, and from there to concentration camps in Germany where they are starved, beaten, and tortured. But in the face of despair, they never give up hope, their love for each other, or the whereabouts of their colleagues.In Code Name: Lise, Larry Loftis paints a portrait of true courage, patriotism, and love—of two incredibly heroic people who endured unimaginable horrors and degradations. He seamlessly weaves together the touching romance between Odette and Peter and the thrilling cat and mouse game between them and Sergeant Bleicher.

Code Name Details

TitleCode Name
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseJan 15th, 2019
PublisherGallery Books
ISBN-139781501198656
Rating
GenreHistory, Nonfiction, War, World War II, Biography, Military Fiction, Biography Memoir

Code Name Review

  • Julie
    January 1, 1970
    This is an incredible story of war, intrigue, love and a whole lot of courage! It is the story of Odette Sansom whose moral code would not allow her to sit back and do nothing as the Nazi made their march on Europe. At great personal expense, she left her family and her life to act as a courier for the British SOE (Special Organization Executive), whose function was to cause as much difficulty as they could for the Nazi through acts of sabotage. The strength and courage this woman had in the fac This is an incredible story of war, intrigue, love and a whole lot of courage! It is the story of Odette Sansom whose moral code would not allow her to sit back and do nothing as the Nazi made their march on Europe. At great personal expense, she left her family and her life to act as a courier for the British SOE (Special Organization Executive), whose function was to cause as much difficulty as they could for the Nazi through acts of sabotage. The strength and courage this woman had in the face of the Nazis was astounding and inspiring. Throughout her work and capture what was most striking was her absolute fearlessness and absolute refusal to compromise the people she worked with no matter how the Nazi’s tried to break her. “Code Name: Lise” shows us the strength of the human spirit when motivated by love and an uncompromising moral code that calls for action. At the end of the story, the author addresses some of the historical controversies surrounding Odette Sansome and the role she played with the SOE. For me, this added a depth to the book which I really appreciate. It is not an easy story or an uncomplicated one! It is one, however, I absolutely recommend! I was privileged to receive a free copy of this book from NetGalley and the Publisher, Gallery, Threshold, Pocket Books in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Dave
    January 1, 1970
    Not too often, but once in a while, a true story is so intense, thrilling, and adventurous that reading it you just might think you're reading fiction. Filled with espionage, war, romance, torture, imprisonment, and desperation, Odette's story is inspiring and fascinating. Leaving three young children behind while her husband is on the front lines, Odette volunteered to go behind enemy lines in Occupied France and work on behalf of the resistance. At first, reluctant to become a spy and thinking Not too often, but once in a while, a true story is so intense, thrilling, and adventurous that reading it you just might think you're reading fiction. Filled with espionage, war, romance, torture, imprisonment, and desperation, Odette's story is inspiring and fascinating. Leaving three young children behind while her husband is on the front lines, Odette volunteered to go behind enemy lines in Occupied France and work on behalf of the resistance. At first, reluctant to become a spy and thinking she'd never make it out of training school, she became the most decorated woman in WW2 Britain. Steadfast, determined, sure of herself, even after capture by the Germans and sent to the infamous prison camp, Ravensbruck, a world beyond the walls of hell. Tortured to confess her compatriots' names. Condemned to death for her role. Starved, denied medical treatment, locked in a cage, and yet still Tenacious, still steadfast. What an amazing story that could well have been fiction if it weren't true.Many thanks to the publisher for providing a copy for review.
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  • Joseph Finder
    January 1, 1970
    I was lucky enough to read an early copy, and it's just splendid: a grand adventure, part thriller, part love story, full of wonderful details about the tradecraft of wartime espionage and the names of dozens of unsung heroes who fought the Nazis on the backstreets of France. A remarkable achievement that does honor to its subject. It would make a great movie, and I'll be surprised if it hasn't already been optioned.
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  • Dick Reynolds
    January 1, 1970
    It’s 1942 and German troops have occupied most of Europe. A French woman named Odette Sansom wants to do her part to fight the Germans and manages to become a spy code-named Lise. She joins forces with an English officer named Peter Churchill who will be her commanding officer. Remarkably, Odette had once been married and still had three children but she persuades a relative to take care of them while she fulfills her patriotic duty for France. Odette is alone in Arles, France on Christmas eve It’s 1942 and German troops have occupied most of Europe. A French woman named Odette Sansom wants to do her part to fight the Germans and manages to become a spy code-named Lise. She joins forces with an English officer named Peter Churchill who will be her commanding officer. Remarkably, Odette had once been married and still had three children but she persuades a relative to take care of them while she fulfills her patriotic duty for France. Odette is alone in Arles, France on Christmas eve 1942 and joins a group of German officers at their hotel. After a feast of cake and several bottles of Cote du Rhone she persuades the Germans to move a piano upstairs where the sounds can be enjoyed by a greater number of hotel guests. Not exactly a bit of spy craft but it does attest to Odette’s cleverness. Peter, Odette and several compatriots are captured by Nazis and taken by train to one of Germany’s infamous prison camps. Odette is subjected to some torture that even made me cringe but she would not reveal any military secrets. Peter and Odette begin to have romantic feelings about each other during this period and told their captors that they were married even though they were not. Because of Peter’s last name, the Nazis believed that they had caught a relative of the British Prime Minister; neither Peter nor Odette tried to tell them otherwise. The Nazis sent an offer to England and offer a trade: we’ll give you Peter Churchill in exchange for Rudolf Hess. England, however, would not agree to the switch. Both Peter and Odette survive the war, are released from prison and travel to England where they eventually marry. Because of her heroism during the war, Odette is selected to receive an award. In a large ceremony the George Cross is presented to her by none other than King George VI, the only woman being honored along with 249 men. Photographs, reference notes and the author’s commentary are provided. This is an inspiring book of non-fiction that reads like a exciting and tension-filled novel.
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  • Zohar - ManOfLaBook.com
    January 1, 1970
    For more reviews and bookish posts please visit: http://www.ManOfLaBook.comCode Name: Lise: The True Story of the Woman Who Became WWII’s Most Highly Decorated Spy by Larry Loftis is a non-fiction book about a British spy operating in occupied France. Mr. Lofits was a corporate attorney, but is now a full time writer.The one thing which I immediately realized by reading this book is that the author has much sympathy for his subject. Odette Sansom, Lise, was not just the most decorated woman, but For more reviews and bookish posts please visit: http://www.ManOfLaBook.comCode Name: Lise: The True Story of the Woman Who Became WWII’s Most Highly Decorated Spy by Larry Loftis is a non-fiction book about a British spy operating in occupied France. Mr. Lofits was a corporate attorney, but is now a full time writer.The one thing which I immediately realized by reading this book is that the author has much sympathy for his subject. Odette Sansom, Lise, was not just the most decorated woman, but the most decorated woman of the whole war.Code Name: Lise: The True Story of the Woman Who Became WWII’s Most Highly Decorated Spy by Larry Loftis tells an amazing story, and it’s one of those book which I love, the author taking a real story and writing it as if it were a novel. Mr. Loftis creates a nerve wrecking narrative, filled with excitement and heroism. I found the writing to be a bit cliché at times, which was odd since the story is anything but.When people call about “having a calling” they should read this book, Mrs. Sansom left her daughters in a convent to go to what essentially was “spy school”, because she simply had to do something to help during the war. She learned to be proficient with many weapons, the difference in uniforms of the Axis armies, as well as master her new identity.The author describes in detail Mrs. Sansom / Lise’s mission and ordeal while being captured. She spent many months being tortured and thinking she will be executed, all being told to the reader in somewhat grisly detail. In a game of lies, two big ones saved her, she pretended to be the wife of her commander, Peter Churchill, who pretended to be related to the famous prime minister.Peter wasn’t related, but he and Odette got married after the war.This book is a fast read and the narrative is thrilling and intense. This is an amazing story, I understand that Odette Sansom is famous in England, and I’m glad her story is being told across the pond.
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  • Steve
    January 1, 1970
    A great and interesting book on the life of Odette Sansom who became a SOE agent during World War II and was sent to occupied France after five failed landing attempts. During her missions, she was hunted down by Hugo Bleicher, a top Gestapo agent and finally succeeded in capturing her. Sansom was sent to Frenses prison in Paris and then to concentration camps, Where she endured beatings, starvation, and torture-But never gave them information. She later became World War II's most decorated and A great and interesting book on the life of Odette Sansom who became a SOE agent during World War II and was sent to occupied France after five failed landing attempts. During her missions, she was hunted down by Hugo Bleicher, a top Gestapo agent and finally succeeded in capturing her. Sansom was sent to Frenses prison in Paris and then to concentration camps, Where she endured beatings, starvation, and torture-But never gave them information. She later became World War II's most decorated and the first female spy to receive the Victoria Cross.
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  • RoF
    January 1, 1970
    I received a free copy thanks to Goodreads.This biography is interesting to discover Odette Sansom's life during WWII. However, since it is not the first biography, without reading the previous ones it is hard to evaluate its own value.Indeed, the most interesting part of the book is the last one, the chapter talking about the controversy after the war when different stakeholders published their memoirs and other tried to diminish them. Since this fact-checking portion clearly presents different I received a free copy thanks to Goodreads.This biography is interesting to discover Odette Sansom's life during WWII. However, since it is not the first biography, without reading the previous ones it is hard to evaluate its own value.Indeed, the most interesting part of the book is the last one, the chapter talking about the controversy after the war when different stakeholders published their memoirs and other tried to diminish them. Since this fact-checking portion clearly presents different arguments and points of view, it is a good conclusion.Several technical flaws in the uncorrected proof that I received made it difficult to read sometimes: misplaced words, incorrect translation from English to French, lack of information for few pictures, confusion between real names and aliases (especially "Robert"), etc... Hopefully they will all be corrected for the official release.Overall, it seems that the author could not choose between different genres.It is half a romance novel because there is quite a high dose of chaste feelings between Odette and Peter her commanding officer and it is not a thorough biography because of the lack of supporting documents like letters, official records, pictures, maps (if you are not familiar with the geography of Southern France, you need to find a map to better understand Odette's endeavors) or other elements that an historian would use to support, illustrate and better explain the context. And some important questions remain, for instance about the relationship between Odette and her daughters: how did they feel when they finally reunited with their mom after the war ? Joy ? Resentment ? How did her mom try to explain her choices and re-build a family bond ? And what does she do during 40 years after the war ?It is not a breathtaking action novel because of the too few details about Odette's accomplishments in her Resistance circuits. Also, too many chapters end with phony cliffhangers, above all the preface or the chapter almost at the end when an SS officer gets close to the car where Odette is watching documents. Some situations also look absurd and make the reader step back from the story to try to understand how a person described as a deeply sick skeleton due to starvation and physical and psychological torture can still walk and prefer to do some unnecessary things. Additionally, when she is rescued, nobody seems to feel that the right decision would be to take her to an hospital. This happens in the previously mentioned situation and again in London when they keep Odette waiting in the SOE headquarters until Peter's return.And it would have been useful to get more insight from the main characters with psychological developments about their feelings, their decision-making process and how they dealt with the consequences of their actions.One of the good points that I'd like to highlight from this book is the explanation of the internal rivalries between MI6 and SOE in England and between Abwerh and SS in Germany. That gives credibility to the story, especially when it deals with the German spy chaser "Monsieur Jean".At the end, despite the writing which could be improved, you get Odette's portrait focused on the WWII period and a lot of questions to open discussion about heroism. How do you take bold decisions ? Does a hero have to crave adrenaline and love the thrill ? How do you balance personal and collective interests ? Which values are more important ? What is worth the risk ?
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  • Becky
    January 1, 1970
    First sentence: Major Guthrie looked again at the photographs. Premise/plot: The subtitle of this one tells you essentially everything you need to know to decide if this book is for you: "the true story of the woman who became WWII's most highly decorated spy." Since I seek out fiction and nonfiction set during this time, it was enough for me to put the book on hold. Odette, the spy, in some ways was your average person. She was married. Her husband was in active service--can't remember which br First sentence: Major Guthrie looked again at the photographs. Premise/plot: The subtitle of this one tells you essentially everything you need to know to decide if this book is for you: "the true story of the woman who became WWII's most highly decorated spy." Since I seek out fiction and nonfiction set during this time, it was enough for me to put the book on hold. Odette, the spy, in some ways was your average person. She was married. Her husband was in active service--can't remember which branch now. She had three kids, three YOUNG kids. True, she was a Frenchwoman living in the UK. True, she knew some parts of France quite well and could speak the language fluently without an English accent. But she certainly never saw herself as spy material. But with a little convincing she said yes to serving her adopted country. After some training and a lot of bad luck in actually getting to France, there she was part of the French Resistance. What could go wrong? Just about everything--though not from day one, mission one. For the most part she was a messenger--carrying secret messages back and forth.My thoughts: I was disappointed. I think my disappointment has to do with the grand book I was promised in the jacket copy. The jacket copy makes the book out to be a SWEEPING romance, a true love story. Two spies fall madly, deeply, passionately in love while they work side by side for the Resistance. He's her Commanding Officer, Peter Churchill. They're arrested together. Though separated for years, neither can forget their *love*...The story is well-researched. I won't deny that. It is based on a true story. But I found it less thrilling and less romantic than the jacket copy makes it out to be. I didn't find the man to capture them to be so much "cunning" (according to the jacket copy) as lucky. One of the spies in Peter and Odette's circle or ring was just REALLY stupid, clumsy, gullible, immoral. Odette and Peter were aware of this--that their identities were compromised and they were being pursued--but they reckoned on a few more days of safety. This wasn't so much "thrilling cat and mouse chase" as it was YELL AT THE PEOPLE IN THE BOOK. As for their time in prison and concentration camps...this does make up the majority of the book. I did find both to be strong and resilient--not easily broken. In fact, there was no breaking. As I mentioned it's based on a true story....and the two did marry after the war...but they didn't stay married. This was no life-consuming LOVE to last the ages. The author hints that perhaps she cheated on him and they then divorced. She did marry a third husband--in the 1950s, I believe.
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  • Kat, aka
    January 1, 1970
    This book was amazing. I, like so many others, love reading f stories about the Holocaust. I'm not sure why; it was an ugly, ugly time. I think it's because in the end the good guys won, and we need to understand that sometimes bad things happen to good people. Like it did to Odette and Peter in Code Name: Lise.This book was hard to read, because so much of it was ugly. So many cruelties were inflicted in these pages. But it was beautiful too, because they kept going. They didn't flinch. They ma This book was amazing. I, like so many others, love reading f stories about the Holocaust. I'm not sure why; it was an ugly, ugly time. I think it's because in the end the good guys won, and we need to understand that sometimes bad things happen to good people. Like it did to Odette and Peter in Code Name: Lise.This book was hard to read, because so much of it was ugly. So many cruelties were inflicted in these pages. But it was beautiful too, because they kept going. They didn't flinch. They may have wanted to give up, but they didn't. And they helped see that so many war criminals were put away, which was awesome. After reading it, I have to give the book 4.5 stars, rounded up to five. I'm taking away half a point because there were just so many people, and it was hard for me to keep track - but that was my fault, not the books. Read it and enjoy!
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  • Jen
    January 1, 1970
    Code Name: Lise by Larry Loftis. Odette Sansom Hallowes is also known as Odette Churchill and was recruited by the SOE in 1942.My problem with this biography are the "conversations." While some of these can be documented in general, using this as dialogue feels too much like fiction. I prefer a third person account unless conversations can be documented verbatim with appropriate footnotes.Odette Sansom was a French woman married to an Englishman and joined the SOE in 1942. I did like the referen Code Name: Lise by Larry Loftis. Odette Sansom Hallowes is also known as Odette Churchill and was recruited by the SOE in 1942.My problem with this biography are the "conversations." While some of these can be documented in general, using this as dialogue feels too much like fiction. I prefer a third person account unless conversations can be documented verbatim with appropriate footnotes.Odette Sansom was a French woman married to an Englishman and joined the SOE in 1942. I did like the references to the SOE, Leo Marks, Colonel Buckmaster, and a few others because I was familiar with them from other books about the SOE. It was a bit disconcerting to get to the end and read the criticism of some historians in regard to Odette's service. While I admire the author for including the controversy, it left me a little unsettled about the roles of Odette and Peter Churchill. It was a bit disconcerting to get to the end and read the criticism of historians in regard to Odette's service. While I admire the author for including the controversy, it left me unsettled about the roles of Odette and Peter Churchill. An intriguing look at the lives of some of the agents in occupied France, Code Name: Lise examines the service of one of the most famous of the SOE agents and one who survived Ravensbruck concentration camp.If you are interested in the SOE and the intelligence operations in Europe I can recommend Leo Marks' Between Silk and Cyanide. The purpose of the SOE was "to conduct espionage, sabotage and reconnaissance in occupied Europe (and later, also in occupied Southeast Asia) against the Axis powers, and to aid local resistance movements." Leo Marks, a cryptographer, headed the code department " supporting resistance agents in occupied Europe for the secret Special Operations Executive organisation" while Maurice Buckmaster was the head of "F" section. Also another book about an SOE agent in France is Nancy Wake by Russel Braddon.Read in October.NetGalley/Gallery BooksHistory/WWII/Espionage. Jan. 15, 2019. Print length: 384 pages.
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  • Onceinabluemoon
    January 1, 1970
    4.5 rounding up because I can't even imagine walking a day in her footsteps! And she was a mother... We are all made of different cloth, hers was steel, mine is lint, just stunned at her strength 💪!
  • Rae Bates
    January 1, 1970
    Excellent book. What an amazing story. I am disappointed that I had never heard of this woman before now. This book is well written and engaging.
  • Ivana
    January 1, 1970
    I’ve never heard of the most highly decorated spy woman until I came across this book. What a book! I felt as if I were reading a work of fiction. Incredible story, incredibly well written.
  • Christy
    January 1, 1970
    “Life takes guts.” Lucille Ball is quoted to have said. If anyone knows anything about this statement it is those who sacrifice their own safety, comfort, and sanity for that of their country. During World War II thousands came together to do just this. Odette Sansom was one of those.Odette Sansom is anything but average. Her childhood battles are enough to make most weep. She manages to overcome them and make it to adulthood. Her struggles during childhood may have been what gave her strength t “Life takes guts.” Lucille Ball is quoted to have said. If anyone knows anything about this statement it is those who sacrifice their own safety, comfort, and sanity for that of their country. During World War II thousands came together to do just this. Odette Sansom was one of those.Odette Sansom is anything but average. Her childhood battles are enough to make most weep. She manages to overcome them and make it to adulthood. Her struggles during childhood may have been what gave her strength to survive the pain she endured during her imprisonment. 1942, Sansom leaves her children behind and joins the SOE. This would have been considered unconventional at the time for a woman to leave her children and go off to war for some. She is anything but conventional. She refuses to sit in the safety of the British countryside while her friends and family struggle in France. During SOE training, she learns special hand-to-hand combat, parachute, and weapons training. All of which are new and secret training methods. Her training in the SOE mirrors the training of another unit at the time, the 1st Special Service Force Aka the Devil’s Brigade or “The Black Devil’s” as the German’s called them. (a joint unit of Canadian-U. S members, also protected by secret, activated 9 July 1942.) The training was not average by any standard, even for men. For women to go through it and to excel, took guts. Sansom is sent to France under the command of Captain Peter Churchill. He adds her to his unit when he realizes her merit and determination. They fall in love despite her being married. They complete missions in France. She gets captured by Germans and sent to concentration camps where she suffers unimaginable torture at the hands of the Germans. She doesn’t give up. Her story doesn’t sound believable. How can one person go through so much and survive? Sansom did, but many did not. Her story is an example of one of the many untold stories of men and women who gave up everything during World War II. In 1950, Herbert Wilcox directed Anna Neagle in the British war film, Odette. Neagle and Wilcox produced it. A title card at the end of the film quotes Sansom. Code Name: Lise by Larry Loftis is an extraordinary and detailed story of a courageous mother of three who went on to become an SOE agent, a spy, for Britain and France. This is a great read. Thank you to Anabel Jimenez at Gallery Books, Simon & Schuster, and Larry Loftis for the privilege of reading an advanced reader’s copy!
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  • RMazin
    January 1, 1970
    Odette, code name Lise, would not be anyone’s obvious choice to become the most highly decorated woman of WWII. Born in France, Odette overcomes childhood illness and later marries a Brit. As the war progresses, Odette’s call to patriotism, love of her first country France and the debt she owes her new country, Britain, beckons her to eventually become a member of the Special Operations Executive. This is an intelligence, spy and sabotage organization aiding the French resistance. It is extremel Odette, code name Lise, would not be anyone’s obvious choice to become the most highly decorated woman of WWII. Born in France, Odette overcomes childhood illness and later marries a Brit. As the war progresses, Odette’s call to patriotism, love of her first country France and the debt she owes her new country, Britain, beckons her to eventually become a member of the Special Operations Executive. This is an intelligence, spy and sabotage organization aiding the French resistance. It is extremely dangerous, yet Odette (now Lise) leaves three young daughters and her overseas husband to engage in missions as a courier. Not only does Lise successfully aid the war effort, she eventually finds romance with her fellow officer. But their operation could be compromised at any moment from spies within and without the environment where they ply their spycraft. Loftis relates the perils of her predicament as she forges her new identity, tries to keep her temper and romantic inclinations in check and recalls her young daughters safe in England. Her heroism, courage, intelligence and foresight strengthen her resolve and endurance when captured and tortured. This book reads like a fast-paced thriller as Odette transforms herself into Lise and maintains hope no matter how grave or inevitable the threat and fear. Highly recommended and an excellent choice for many readers who have enjoyed the recent bounty of fiction about women who lived in these times.Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for the opportunity to read this book.
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  • Yvette (bookworlder)
    January 1, 1970
    Shortly after beginning to read Code Name: Lise by Larry Loftis, I had to stop and double check that this was intended to be non-fiction.  The writing was engaging, the story briskly paced, and even when giving brief back story of a new individual or situation, there was a consistent narrative thread.  And that feeling continued for much of the book, even through the torture Odette Sansom, code name Lise, endured at the hands of the SS. This is World War II history that reads like a novel and ma Shortly after beginning to read Code Name: Lise by Larry Loftis, I had to stop and double check that this was intended to be non-fiction.  The writing was engaging, the story briskly paced, and even when giving brief back story of a new individual or situation, there was a consistent narrative thread.  And that feeling continued for much of the book, even through the torture Odette Sansom, code name Lise, endured at the hands of the SS. This is World War II history that reads like a novel and manages to have a personal feel, even when the narrative seems to become split for a time between  Odette, her commander Peter Churchill, and the German 'super spy catcher' Hugo Bleicher.In telling the story of the SPINDLE trio - Odette/Lise the courier, Peter the commander, and their radio-man Arnaud - but focusing primarily on Odette, the author shines a light on a compelling aspect of World War II.  But in focusing on Odette, he brings into focus a woman who, despite her 'nettle rash temperament,' displays the fortitude, determination, loyalty and optimism that made her a survivor.This is a story of dedication, bravery, love, and survival.  And it is an unflinching look at the horrors and atrocities of World War II.  Highly recommended to fiction readers who enjoy stories of the second World War.  In Lise, you will find a flawed but very real heroine.This review refers to an Advance Uncorrected Proof won through GoodReads, courtesy of the publisher.  All opinions expressed are my own.
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  • CoffeeBreakBooks
    January 1, 1970
    I was captivated by this story of Odette Sansom, one of the women specifically recruited by Britain’s SOE, Special Operations Executive, to serve as secret agents. Loftis, through meticulous research including diaries, interviews, and archives, both engages and educates us with this facet of women serving their country. Odette, code name Lise, is determined, as are the other female agents, to "do their part" for the war, just as their brothers, husbands, and boyfriends are heading for the front I was captivated by this story of Odette Sansom, one of the women specifically recruited by Britain’s SOE, Special Operations Executive, to serve as secret agents. Loftis, through meticulous research including diaries, interviews, and archives, both engages and educates us with this facet of women serving their country. Odette, code name Lise, is determined, as are the other female agents, to "do their part" for the war, just as their brothers, husbands, and boyfriends are heading for the front lines. The author paints a picture with words, and the book reads more like a novel. Such a large part of WWII history is revealed in heart-stopping and brutal detail. The Resistance fighters were committed to the overthrow of the Nazi occupation by whatever means possible. Enjoying history, I have read a number of books regarding the war, along with hearing many stories from family members who served. I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher, through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
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  • Tracy
    January 1, 1970
    CODE NAME: LISE tells the true life tale of housewife and mother of two, Odette Sansom beginning in 1942 with her recruitment by the British Special Operations Executive (SOE). Starting with her training, then her missions, including her capture by the Germans, this story is fascinating and compelling. As if that weren’t enough adventure, she finds love along the way. Written from actual mission reports and first-hand accounts, this reads like an action novel. I was both captivated and horrified CODE NAME: LISE tells the true life tale of housewife and mother of two, Odette Sansom beginning in 1942 with her recruitment by the British Special Operations Executive (SOE). Starting with her training, then her missions, including her capture by the Germans, this story is fascinating and compelling. As if that weren’t enough adventure, she finds love along the way. Written from actual mission reports and first-hand accounts, this reads like an action novel. I was both captivated and horrified by Odette’s war experiences, but from the very first page I was hooked and couldn’t get to the end fast enough to know what happened to her. Does she live through the war? Does her romance flourish? Part thriller, part romance and all true. I highly recommend this extremely well written and well-researched story of the spy who became WWII’s most highly decorated woman.
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  • Sean Sims
    January 1, 1970
    From the first page to the last page Code Name: Lise pulled me in to the world of espionage during World War II. Larry Loftis expertly intertwined the suspense and excitement of operating behind enemy lines with a love story. I found that I couldn't put the book down because I always wanted to know what would happen next. At times I felt I was right beside the people in the story given the very descriptive explanations of the situation.While I greatly enjoyed the book it seemed in the end that p From the first page to the last page Code Name: Lise pulled me in to the world of espionage during World War II. Larry Loftis expertly intertwined the suspense and excitement of operating behind enemy lines with a love story. I found that I couldn't put the book down because I always wanted to know what would happen next. At times I felt I was right beside the people in the story given the very descriptive explanations of the situation.While I greatly enjoyed the book it seemed in the end that perhaps the espionage aspect of the book was glanced over in favor of the love story. Overall I greatly enjoyed the book and felt it did well covering the many aspects of espionage and love during World War II.
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  • Julie
    January 1, 1970
    I won this book in a Goodreads giveaway. Shortly before winning this book, I watched the fascinating series, “Churchill’s Secret Agents,” in which present-Day civilians were put through the training for SOE (Special Operations Executive) agents in World War II. So I was quite pleased to read this excellent biography of an actual SOE agent, Odette Samson, who was a Courier for SOE in France. Eventually arrested, she heroically refused to give the Nazis any information about SOE activities, even w I won this book in a Goodreads giveaway. Shortly before winning this book, I watched the fascinating series, “Churchill’s Secret Agents,” in which present-Day civilians were put through the training for SOE (Special Operations Executive) agents in World War II. So I was quite pleased to read this excellent biography of an actual SOE agent, Odette Samson, who was a Courier for SOE in France. Eventually arrested, she heroically refused to give the Nazis any information about SOE activities, even when she was tortured and almost starved to death by them. Her heroism during the War led to her being awarded the George Cross and other honors, and she was, as the book’s subtitle indicates, “WWII’s most highly decorated woman.” This book is very well written and inspiring.
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  • Stuart Ashenbrenner
    January 1, 1970
    This story is a non-fiction book, but with so much thrill, intrigue, and mystery. It has everything that makes for a good book. It took me only two days to finish this book. It bridges suspense into romance, as it chronicles Odette Sansom, who in her father's footsteps, fights for her country during WWII. She then falls in love with Captain Peter Churchill, and they go on mission after mission with one another.This was one of the books that makes you want to drive around the block an extra time This story is a non-fiction book, but with so much thrill, intrigue, and mystery. It has everything that makes for a good book. It took me only two days to finish this book. It bridges suspense into romance, as it chronicles Odette Sansom, who in her father's footsteps, fights for her country during WWII. She then falls in love with Captain Peter Churchill, and they go on mission after mission with one another.This was one of the books that makes you want to drive around the block an extra time to keep listening. For fans of audiobooks, Kate Reading did a fantastic job narrating this exciting story.
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  • Mike
    January 1, 1970
    Wow - what a story - intrigue, suspense, war, spy, romance, betrayal, history - it has everything to keep you engaged in reading until you finish it (and it's all true). Not only does it make a great novel, but also would make a great movie. Well written, flows excellently - great job Larry Loftis ! I eagerly await your next novel.
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  • Jep
    January 1, 1970
    A humbling true account of a female spy. It’s hard to imagine the horrors experienced by Lise, other POWs, prisoners, and Jews during WWII, but the words bring to life the past with vivid and startling imagery. One ordinary woman’s resilience and courage makes me believe that “human beings at their best” can achieve heroic acts for the good of others.
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  • Barbara
    January 1, 1970
    A biography of a famous female spy during World War II, this book was much more like a novel. Odette Sampson ( Code Name: Lise ), became a spy for the British Firces in France. The story was very suspenseful in places, especially during her arrest and residence at the prison in Fresnes, south of Paris.
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  • Marty
    January 1, 1970
    I liked the book, but I did not love it. Way to much drag in the mid section, and then I was somewhat dissapointed in the last part. What happened to the children, what was their view regarding their mother?Yes Odette was very brave, but it seemed her spy carrier was over before it really started. I hope to read more about various opperations.
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  • Miki
    January 1, 1970
    another really good book. some parts were a bit confusing for me though, especially the part when Lise was in France, but that may have been due to the fact that i was binge reading this book at 11:00 at night...
  • Ashley
    January 1, 1970
    Thoroughly enjoyed reading and learning about Britain’s most decorated spy. A piece of history I was unfamiliar with and the author told the story well.
  • Jerry Smith
    January 1, 1970
    I loved the unfolding story of Odette Samson. Fascinating bio and terrifically engaging writing.
  • Jsgenz
    January 1, 1970
    This was a very compelling story. I was sucked in; however, I had to skip some of the description of tortures committed by the SS/Gestapo. It was too much for me.
  • Dawn
    January 1, 1970
    This was a very well written book. This was the first book by this author. I only wish it were longer.
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