Mission France: The True History of the Women of SOE (Hardback)Kate Vigurs (author)
- 10+ in stock
A full account of the 39 female SOE agents sent into Occupied France during World War Two, Vigurs’s exhaustively researched book focuses not just on the famous names but other heroic women whose stories have thus far been neglected.
Formed in 1940, Special Operations Executive was to coordinate Resistance work overseas. The organization's F section sent more than four hundred agents into France, thirty-nine of whom were women. But while some are widely known -Violette Szabo, Odette Sansom, Noor Inayat Khan- others have had their stories largely overlooked.
Kate Vigurs interweaves for the first time the stories of all thirty-nine female agents. Tracing their journeys from early recruitment to work undertaken in the field, to evasion from, or capture by, the Gestapo, Vigurs shows just how greatly missions varied. Some agents were more adept at parachuting. Some agents' missions lasted for years, others' less than a few hours. Some survived, others were murdered.
By placing the women in the context of their work with the SOE and the wider war, this history reveals the true extent of the differences in their abilities and attitudes while underlining how they nonetheless shared a common mission and, ultimately, deserve recognition both collectively and individually.
Publisher: Yale University Press
Number of pages: 328
Dimensions: 235 x 156 mm
'Gripping...Based on new archival research and interviews, these are three-dimensional tales of failure and betrayal, as well as heroism and bravery.' - History Revealed
'Apart from a few names, those of all the women who became SOE agents in France are largely unknown. But, in her compelling new book, Kate Vigurs has brought together the stories of all the women's triumphs and tragedies. Stories that should not be missed.' - Susan Ottaway, author of Violette Szabo: The Life that I Have
'Thirty-nine ordinary women reacting to extraordinary circumstances... Eschewing the glamorous image so often foisted on to the women of the SOE, Vigurs offers a cooler, more perceptive insight into varieties of courage.' - Sian Rees, author of Lucie Aubrac: The French Resistance Heroine Who Defied the Gestapo
'Mission France is an important addition to the story of the female agents of SOE's F Section. It handles the history of these women by means of compassionate analysis and successfully avoids the hagiographical approach so favoured by other writers.' - Mark Seaman, author of Undercover Agent: How one of SOE's youngest agents helped defeat the Nazis
'A riveting and brilliantly researched account of 39 women agents of SOE. Vigurs takes us on a journey of intrigue, betrayal, escape and sometimes tragedy. A must-read for all fans of the secret war, it is the definitive account of the secret underworld of occupation.' - Richard J. Aldrich, author of GCHQ: The Uncensored Story of Britain's Most Secret Intelligence
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“39 brave women fighting for freedom”
Too often the history of the female agents deployed by SOE F Section focusses on a few well-known names. Mission France brings to the forefront the other women who all have stories that should be told and are... More
“Excellent, interesting & informative read”
Great book, giving a fascinating insight into the women who served in SOE during WWII.
I learnt a great deal (including in general about the German occupation of France). There are inevitable dark times in the story... More
espionage, spies, France, WW2, historical-figures, historical-places-events, historical-research, historical-setting, history-and-culture, British-intelligence, resistance-efforts*****
Every one of these women... More
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