“Retirement” means something altogether different to a spy. It means someone in authority over you has decided that “coming in from the cold” is out of the question. It means you’d better run.
Laynie Portland has masqueraded as Swedish citizen Linnéa Olander for more than two decades, the last seven years as companion to Vassili Aleksandrovich Petroff, senior technology advisor to the Secretary of the Russian Federation’s Security Council.
Life as Petroff’s mistress is lonely and difficult, even brutal, for Petroff has a pathological need to master what is “his.” But the woman Petroff knows as “Linnéa” is not the compliant, deferential woman he believes her to be. She is Laynie Portland—spy extraordinaire—and Laynie has stolen a wealth of secrets from Petroff and fed the treasure to her Marstead agency handlers.
As Petroff’s abuse intensifies, Laynie fears for her life, and she petitions her agency to pull her out. Instead, her agency declares that she is too well-placed to decommission. Laynie is dismayed to learn that her Marstead chain of command would rather risk her death under Petroff’s hand than lose the valuable intel she provides.
Out of options and faced with no viable alternative, Laynie runs.
Enraged by her betrayal, Petroff vows to capture and punish her, a certain death sentence. And when Laynie disobeys orders, Marstead issues her a “retirement package”—a short walk off the deck of a ferry into the icy black rollers of the Baltic Sea.
Pursued by Russian assassins and hunted by her own agency, Laynie scrambles, fights, and claws her way toward freedom—although she knows that it is only a matter of time before her pursuers overtake her. Desperate and despairing, Laynie is stunned to sense a higher presence at work, acting on her behalf. Could it be the God in whom her sister, Kari, trusts?
No. Why would he help me, Laynie asks herself, given the life I have lived?
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In a small Welsh village, naïve Michelle Warbutton is devastated by a shocking family secret. Forced to rethink her future, she longs to leave her world.
In Yorkshire and already world-weary, Guy Halfpenny is desperate to escape his miserable life.
Both have limited choices.
Their paths aren’t destined to cross until they join the British Army – where their futures are determined by the decisions of others.
Buy now to discover how lives are shaped, friendships forged, and loves won and lost in this gripping, coming of age adventure of love, humour, and tragedy.
Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers’ Favorite – 5 stars!
“A fascinating and enthralling look at Great Britain in the 1970s as experienced through the eyes of Guy, a North Yorkshire teen, and Mouse, a Welsh girl. I had a marvelous time reading Unlikely Soldiers and am looking forward to the next book in the series. It’s most highly recommended.”
Goodreads and Amazon Reviewer
“Deb McEwan has created a beautiful portrait of the times, with just the right touch of romance.”
Goodreads and Amazon Reviewer
“Deb McEwan puts passion, skill and dedication into every page. This one will have you teary, hooked and feeling all the wiser. For the older readers, you’re in for a special trip down memory lane. For the younger readers, get ready to have your eyes opened to how the world used to be.”
The Unlikely Soldiers Series comprises four books:
Book 1: Civvy to Squaddie
Book 2: Secrets & Lies
Book 3: Friends & Revenge
Book 4: Murder & Mayhem