Code Name: Lise: The True Story of the Woman Who Became WWII's Most Highly Decorated Spy (Paperback)

Code Name: Lise: The True Story of the Woman Who Became WWII's Most Highly Decorated Spy By Larry Loftis Cover Image

Code Name: Lise: The True Story of the Woman Who Became WWII's Most Highly Decorated Spy (Paperback)


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A Goodreads Choice Awards semifinalist
Florida Book Awards Silver Medalist
Featured in The New York Times, The Atlantic, Time, New York Newsday, and on Today!
Best Nonfiction Books to Read in 2019—Woman’s Day
The Best Nonfiction Books Coming Out This Year—BookBub
“A nonfiction thriller.”—The Wall Street Journal

From New York Times and international bestselling author of the “gripping” (Michael Connelly, #1 New York Times bestselling author) Into the Lion’s Mouth comes the extraordinary true story of Odette Sansom, the British spy who operated in occupied France and fell in love with her commanding officer during World War II—perfect for fans of Unbroken, The Nightingale, and Code Girls.

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. With this amazing testament to the human spirit, Loftis proves once again that he is adept at writing “nonfiction that reads like a page-turning novel” (Parade).
Larry Loftis is the New York TimesWall Street JournalUSA TODAY, and internationally bestselling author of the nonfiction spy thrillers The Princess Spy, Code Name: Lise, and Into the Lion’s Mouth. A two-time winner of the Florida Book Award, his books have been translated into numerous languages and can be found in Spain, Portugal, Netherlands, Italy, Serbia, Czech Republic, Taiwan, India, Australia, New Zealand, and throughout the UK.
Product Details ISBN: 9781501198663
ISBN-10: 1501198661
Publisher: Gallery Books
Publication Date: November 12th, 2019
Pages: 400
Language: English

Goodreads Choice Awards semifinalist
Florida Book Awards Silver Medalist
Best Nonfiction Books to Read in 2019—Woman's Day
The Best Nonfiction Books Coming Out This Year—BookBub
The 10 Best Nonfiction Books Coming Out In January 2019—Bustle
Best Books of January 2019—Amazon
7 Essential True Crime Books for January—CrimeReads
Book of the Month (Jan.)—Palm Beach Book Festival
January 2019 Book Recommendations —Book Riot

Best Audiobooks of the Year So Far—AppleBooks

"A nonfiction thriller."—Wall Street Journal

"This is a great book! ... A remarkable story. I hope someone's bought the movie rights." The TODAY Show

“Reading like a thrilling spy novel and the most exciting sort of non-fiction—well researched, well written, and fast paced enough to keep the pages turning—this will interest fans of the history of espionage, World War II history, military history, women’s history, and biography.”—Library Journal (starred review)

“With evident sympathy, Loftis tells a well-researched, novelistic story of a heroine and patriot…Swift and entertaining, Loftis’s work reads less like a biography and more like a thriller.”—Publishers Weekly

"A true-life chapter ends on a cliffhanger...A vivid history of wartime heroism."—Kirkus Reviews

"Larry Loftis, who seems to specialize in World War II espionage, relates [Odette Sansom's story] in thriller style." —New York Times Book Review 

"Extraordinary bravery ... made this woman one of World War II's most remarkable spies.  That she survived the war was almost miraculous."TIME

"The stuff of classic World War II thrillers."—Newsday

"A story of sheer bravery and survival that should astound even an avid reader of military history.  A splendid read about a splendid woman." —Washington Times

 "At last the unsung upstarts are getting their due. Sansom ... survived being burned and having her toenails pulled out. She never divulged the information the Germans wanted." —The Atlantic

"This World War II spy story crackles with suspense. It had us in knots—and it's all true!" —Apple Books

 "How an 'ordinary' mom of three became Britain's most decorated WWII spy."New York Post

“Continues the scholarly thriller style of Into the Lion’s Mouth.”Orlando Sentinel

"Written in the style of a thriller, this is a thrilling account of the exploits of World War II’s most highly decorated spy, Odette Sansom."Daily Mail (UK)

 "Loftis brings history to life, shining a light on a truly remarkable woman, reminding us of her spirit, determination and courage… Bravo!"—Woman’s Weekly (UK)

 "Incredibly brave, Odette showed super-human courage, intelligence and perseverance after she and the man she loved were captured.  Peter and Odette's love story is central to Code Name: Lise, [and] Loftis describes the depth of affection that unfolded between them as they risked their lives for their country."  —Daily Mirror (UK)

"Near the end of this wartime tale about a clandestine couple, you hope somebody will make a movie out of the thriller-like plot." —Military Times

"Loftis gives Sansom the epic story her experience warrants, full of spycraft, complex and important missions, incredible feats of bravery, and love."—CrimeReads

"Fascinating ... A page-turner, especially the final third of the book which provides a riveting account of the mayhem of the final days of WWII ... Loftis’ meticulous research is evident throughout." —The Cipher Brief

"Readers will not want to put this book down...A spy thriller instead of a dry biography."—

"[A] fascinating story of resistance and romance." —Daily Beast

"Nonfiction that is written like a novel ... If you like spy novels/biographies don’t miss this one." —Book Riot

"This is a well-written book, almost a romance novel, almost a horror story, almost a war story, that can leave the reader somewhat breathless. The author has that knack of shifting the emphasis onto another detail just when the narrative gets exciting. This enhances the book greatly ....  A cracking book from one end to the other." —NB Magazine (UK)

"Reads like a thriller and a romance, yet is solid history.” —Galveston County Daily News

"Captivating. Odette was one helluva fighter. Loftis is one helluva writer, who tells her story like a novel. ... I'm calling it now: This will be a movie." —Lauren Daley, South Coast Today

"Code Name: Lise is impossible to put down. Suffused with romance, told with a novelist’s eye for page-turning thrills and the historian’s acumen for facts, Loftis brings to colorful life a hero for our time, Odette Sansom.  Like Unbroken and Code Girls, Odette Sansom’s story is epic, intensely personal, emotionally rich, and hard to forget.”—Doug Stanton, #1 New York Times bestselling author of 12 Strong and In Harm’s Way

"An exciting, suspenseful, inspirational tale. You will love this book." —Brad Thor, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Backlash

"An astonishing story of love, survival, and almost unimaginable courage.  Code Name: Lise is non-fiction that reads like a thriller and will keep readers riveted."—Tilar Mazzeo, New York Times bestselling author of Irena’s Children

Code Name: Lise is a grand adventure, part thriller, part love story, and full of wonderful details about the tradecraft of wartime espionage and the bravery of unsung heroes. A remarkable achievement that does honor to its subject. I hope someone takes it to the big screen as it has everything.—Joseph Finder, New York Times bestselling author of The Switch and Judgment

"Larry has a knack for finding untold stories that read more like fiction than fact, and he's done it again with Code Name: Lise.  Having grown up reading about the Jedburgh teams - the forerunners of US Special Forces - I found the story riveting, not the least because it's true, and Larry's relentless research makes Odette Sansom's heroics leap off the page, putting her in the pantheon of our own Special Forces heroes."—Brad Taylor, New York Times bestselling author of Daughter of War

“Loftis delivers a tale of courage, daring, valor—and love—for the ages. Code Name: Lise is the closest history comes to a romance novel.”—Elizabeth Cobbs, New York Times bestselling author of The Hamilton Affair

“Larry Loftis brings the past to life with a brilliantly researched and executed tale of one woman's unparalleled heroism in occupied France during World War II. A riveting true story of love, betrayal and sacrifice, as engaging as any thriller, and not to be missed.”—Mark  Greaney, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Mission Critical

“Larry Loftis has crafted a true thriller, a highly entertaining account of the most highly decorated spy of WW2. A great read.”
–Alex Kershaw, New York Times bestselling author of  The First Wave and Avenue of Spies

"Another masterpiece from Larry Loftis, the king of nonfiction thrillers. If you try just one nonfiction book this year, there's no question ... it should be this one." —The Real Book Spy

"Loftis's detail of Sansom's life reads like a spy thriller, but with the research of a nonfiction narrative, covering one of the best stories of clandestine heroism during the Second World War." —

“Impressively researched … [A] Hitchcockian true story … with dashing flair.  It’s an inspiring listen, reminding us that anyone can become a hero.” —Apple Books Review


"Gripping ... This one will keep you planted in your reading chair from start to finish."—Michael Connelly, #1 New York Times bestselling author

"A work of non-fiction that's more thriller than biography."USA Today

"A sensational book, telling a remarkable true story that few know, even those in the intelligence business. Written in the style of the best spy thrillers, the book is impossible to put down."—Michael Morell, CIA Director (acting 2011, 2012-13)