Shadowed by Death by M. A. Adler – My Review!!

Shadowed by Death – My Review!!

Shadowed by Death Cover

I’m trying to expand my reading preferences, and I found Shadowed by Death (An Oliver Wright World War II Mystery #2) by M. A. Adler. I’m usually not any kind of historical fiction reader, but I liked the blurb. Read on for my thoughts!

Synopsis (from the author):

San Francisco, 1944. Sophia Nirenska, a Polish resistance fighter who survived the Warsaw ghetto uprising, finds safety in California until someone tries to kill her. She insists political enemies want to silence her, but homicide detective Oliver Wright, on medical leave from the Marines, believes the motive is more personal. He and his German shepherd, Harley, try to protect Sophia, but she insists on doing things her own way—a dangerous decision. 

Oliver guards Sophia as they travel from an Italian cafe in Richmond to communist chicken farmers in Petaluma where her impetuous actions put them both in mortal danger. 

When Oliver rescues a girl and her dog who are running for their lives, he discovers the dark secret at the heart of the threat to Sophia, a secret with its roots in Poland. When he does, he is forced to choose between enforcing the law as he knows it and jeopardizing Sophia or accepting a rougher kind of justice.

Shadowed by Death accurately portrays the fears and troubles of the communities of northern California as they bear the burdens of World War II and celebrate the gift of finding family among strangers.

What I liked:

World War II novels are sometimes difficult reads, especially when the story deals with horrific events like the Warsaw ghetto. M. A. Adler did an excellent job of working the events into the story and using it to explain Sophia’s motivations. Sophia and Oliver are great characters, but my favorites are Harley and Blue! I also appreciated the research work into the blind eye turned by the world to Russia’s atrocities.

What I didn’t like:

There wasn’t much to dislike about the book. If I had to pick something, there were a couple of slow spots. Other than that, no complaints from me!

Overall impression:

Shadowed by Death was an enjoyable read despite the background subject matter. Good characters, intriguing plot, plenty of twists and turns, and a satisfying conclusion kept me involved and interested. If you like historical mysteries, read this one!

My rating:

5 Stars

Connect with M. A. Adler:

Find M. A. Adler on her Amazon Author page or her website. Visit, find out about her books, maybe buy one or two, and consider leaving a comment or a review!

Connect with me:

I’m on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and Tumblr. Say hi and let’s connect!

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About Bill Stuart

William Stuart is a ten-year veteran of the US Navy Submarine Force, works in the animal health field, and is the proud father of his daughter Laura and grandfather of two wonderful grandchildren, Aidan and Maggie. When he isn’t working, he enjoys rock-hunting, gold prospecting, playing softball, playing golf, and dabbling in woodworking. He lives in the Greater Atlanta area with Lana, his lovely and adorable wife of more than twenty-five years.

2 Responses to Shadowed by Death by M. A. Adler – My Review!!

  1. Mary Adler says:

    Thank you for the lovely review, Bill. It was a challenge to include enough about the heartbreaking background of the novel to explain the characters’ motivations without exploiting it or battering the sensitivities of the reader. I am most pleased that you enjoyed the book despite the subject matter. Harley is my favorite character, too. He is my first Rotttweiler disguised as a GSD. (There were no Rottweilers in the Marine K-9 Corps.) Blue was inspired by a very young dog I found in the middle of traffic. Thankfully, a pickup truck stopped traffic going one way, and I stopped it going the other and was able to lure Blue into my van and eventually reunite him with his owner. He was a wonderful dog and I fell in love with him in the day that I had him and still think of him and hope he is safe and loved.
    I received the notice of your review out of the blue. Thank you again for the wonderful surprise. Mary A

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