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The Codebreaker's Secret

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A brilliant female codebreaker. An “unbreakable” Japanese naval code. A pilot on a top-secret mission that could change the course of WWII. The Codebreaker's Secret is a dazzling story of love and intrigue set during America’s darkest hour. 1943. As war in the Pacific rages on, Isabel Cooper and her codebreaker colleagues huddle in “the dungeon” at Station HYPO in Pearl Har A brilliant female codebreaker. An “unbreakable” Japanese naval code. A pilot on a top-secret mission that could change the course of WWII. The Codebreaker's Secret is a dazzling story of love and intrigue set during America’s darkest hour. 1943. As war in the Pacific rages on, Isabel Cooper and her codebreaker colleagues huddle in “the dungeon” at Station HYPO in Pearl Harbor, deciphering secrets plucked from the airwaves in a race to bring down the enemy. Isabel has only one wish: to avenge her brother’s death. But she soon finds life has other plans when she meets his best friend, a hotshot pilot with secrets of his own. 1965. Fledgling journalist Lu Freitas comes home to Hawai'i to cover the grand opening of the glamorous Mauna Kea Beach Hotel, Rockefeller's newest and grandest project. When a high-profile guest goes missing, Lu forms an unlikely alliance with an intimidating veteran photographer to unravel the mystery. The two make a shocking discovery that stirs up memories and uncovers an explosive secret from the war days. A secret that only a codebreaker can crack.


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A brilliant female codebreaker. An “unbreakable” Japanese naval code. A pilot on a top-secret mission that could change the course of WWII. The Codebreaker's Secret is a dazzling story of love and intrigue set during America’s darkest hour. 1943. As war in the Pacific rages on, Isabel Cooper and her codebreaker colleagues huddle in “the dungeon” at Station HYPO in Pearl Har A brilliant female codebreaker. An “unbreakable” Japanese naval code. A pilot on a top-secret mission that could change the course of WWII. The Codebreaker's Secret is a dazzling story of love and intrigue set during America’s darkest hour. 1943. As war in the Pacific rages on, Isabel Cooper and her codebreaker colleagues huddle in “the dungeon” at Station HYPO in Pearl Harbor, deciphering secrets plucked from the airwaves in a race to bring down the enemy. Isabel has only one wish: to avenge her brother’s death. But she soon finds life has other plans when she meets his best friend, a hotshot pilot with secrets of his own. 1965. Fledgling journalist Lu Freitas comes home to Hawai'i to cover the grand opening of the glamorous Mauna Kea Beach Hotel, Rockefeller's newest and grandest project. When a high-profile guest goes missing, Lu forms an unlikely alliance with an intimidating veteran photographer to unravel the mystery. The two make a shocking discovery that stirs up memories and uncovers an explosive secret from the war days. A secret that only a codebreaker can crack.

30 review for The Codebreaker's Secret

  1. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader

    I say this every summer when I review one of her books, but I’m such a huge fan of Sara Ackerman. I won a copy of her debut from her almost five years ago, and it’s been book love ever since. She is adept at highlighting the strong women of Hawaii during World War II. Every story is as immersive as the last, and there’s always a touch of romance. About the book: “A brilliant female codebreaker. An “unbreakable” Japanese naval code. A pilot on a top-secret mission that could change the course of W I say this every summer when I review one of her books, but I’m such a huge fan of Sara Ackerman. I won a copy of her debut from her almost five years ago, and it’s been book love ever since. She is adept at highlighting the strong women of Hawaii during World War II. Every story is as immersive as the last, and there’s always a touch of romance. About the book: “A brilliant female codebreaker. An “unbreakable” Japanese naval code. A pilot on a top-secret mission that could change the course of WWII. The Codebreaker's Secret is a dazzling story of love and intrigue set during America’s darkest hour.” Set across 1943 and 1965, The Codebreaker’s Secret highlights Isabel and other Codebreakers. It also includes the mystery of what happened to a high profile guest at a lavish hotel in the second timeline. The two plots merge in a great way. As ever, Hawaii during these time periods is brought to life with every nuance of atmosphere. Lu and Isabel are inspiring main characters. The added mystery elements and tension made The Codebreaker’s Secret quite the page-turner. Every year it seems Ackerman tops herself, and I think this is her very best work! Highly recommended to fans of historical fiction with a dash of romance and mystery. I received a gifted copy. Many of my reviews can also be found on my blog: www.jennifertarheelreader.com and instagram: www.instagram.com/tarheelreader

  2. 5 out of 5

    Marilyn

    4.5 very strong stars for this unforgettable book! The Codebreaker’s Secret was the first book that I had the privilege of reading by Sara Ackerman but I will definitely go back and read some of her prior books in the future. I was very impressed with her vivid storytelling, impeccable research and development of believable characters in The Codebreaker’s Secret. Sara Ackerman wrote The Codebreaker’s Secret using the dual time lines of 1943 and 1965 while she used the Big Island of Hawaii as the 4.5 very strong stars for this unforgettable book! The Codebreaker’s Secret was the first book that I had the privilege of reading by Sara Ackerman but I will definitely go back and read some of her prior books in the future. I was very impressed with her vivid storytelling, impeccable research and development of believable characters in The Codebreaker’s Secret. Sara Ackerman wrote The Codebreaker’s Secret using the dual time lines of 1943 and 1965 while she used the Big Island of Hawaii as the backdrop for this captivating story. It was refreshing for me to read about World War II events as they unfolded and occurred in the Pacific and Pearl Harbor rather than in Europe. In addition to learning about the highly demanding and essential jobs that code breakers held during World War II, it was surprising to learn how few women were given the opportunity to do this. I also enjoyed Sara Ackerman’s stunning descriptions of The Big Island of Hawaii including the beautiful beaches, secluded waterfalls, lush lands with exclusive vegetation and remarkable sunsets. It almost made me feel like I was in Hawaii with the characters. Sara Ackerman, based her book,The Codebreaker’s Secret, on real historic people, places and events even though it was a work of fiction. Set twenty-two years apart, Sara Ackerman, expertly wove the two stories together. The two women protagonists worked relentlessly to solve two different murder mysteries. At the conclusion, the two storylines collided into a stunning and satisfying ending. In 1943, Isabel Cooper was a brilliant codebreaker who was employed through the United States Navy. Her talent and skills earned her a place in “the dungeon “ at Station HYPO in Hawaii. Isabel was the only woman that worked in “the dungeon “ but that did not bother her at all. Her dearest older brother, Walt, lost his life on December 7 when Pearl Harbor was attacked by the Japanese. Isabel was determined to revenge her brother’s death by deciphering as many secret codes as possible from the Japanese. She also had another motive for wanting to work in Hawaii. After her brother’s death, Isabel received several letters from her brother’s war buddies that expressed their sorrow for her brother’s death. Isabel wanted to meet these war buddies so she could find out more about Walt’s final few days. One letter in particular stood out to her. It was from someone named Matteo. Walt had mentioned him in his letters to her before his tragic death. Apparently, Walt and Matteo had become best friends. Isabel, with the help of her roommate, sought Matteo out. Matteo offered to take Isabel to all the places he and Walt had frequented together. He hoped by doing this and sharing the stories of their discoveries Isabel would find solace. Isabel and Mateo began to develop feelings for each other but neither one of them was brave enough to admit it to the other. Isabel was instrumental in breaking several very important codes during this time. She had to keep her work a secret from all the people she knew. While Isabel became increasingly involved with Matteo and started spending more time with him, her roommate also became involved with someone. Then her roommate disappeared. She had been out swimming with her boyfriend and was ruled drowned. Her body was never discovered. Isabel was not buying this explanation but no one was willing to listen to her concerns or suspicions. In 1965, Lu Freitas, a newly hired journalist, landed the best story of her career. She talked her way into being allowed to write a story about Rockerfeller’s new Mauna Kea Beach Hotel in Hawaii. To Lu’s surprise, Matteo, world famous photographer and journalist was invited as well. Lu and Matteo slowly formed a working friendship. When a high profile guest was reported missing, Lu and Matteo joined forces to help discover what could have happened to her. While searching for clues about the guest’s disappearance, Lu and Matteo discovered something even more shocking. The Codebreaker’s Secret by Sara Ackerman was about secrets, romance, friendships, ambition, challenges that women faced of being accepted in certain fields of work, the difficulty of breaking and deciphering codes during World War II,, grief, hope and longing. I was immediately pulled into this story and enjoyed it very much. I highly recommend this book. Publication was August 2, 2022. Thank you to Mira Publishers for allowing me to read The Codebreaker’s Secret by Sara Ackerman through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Marilyn

    4.5 very strong stars for this unforgettable book! The Codebreaker’s Secret was the first book that I had the privilege of reading by Sara Ackerman but I will definitely go back and read some of her prior books in the future. I was very impressed with her vivid storytelling, impeccable research and development of believable characters in The Codebreaker’s Secret. I listened to the audiobook that was performed very well by Jennifer Robideau. Sara Ackerman wrote The Codebreaker’s Secret using the 4.5 very strong stars for this unforgettable book! The Codebreaker’s Secret was the first book that I had the privilege of reading by Sara Ackerman but I will definitely go back and read some of her prior books in the future. I was very impressed with her vivid storytelling, impeccable research and development of believable characters in The Codebreaker’s Secret. I listened to the audiobook that was performed very well by Jennifer Robideau. Sara Ackerman wrote The Codebreaker’s Secret using the dual time lines of 1943 and 1965 while she used the Big Island of Hawaii as the backdrop for this captivating story. It was refreshing for me to read about World War II events as they unfolded and occurred in the Pacific and Pearl Harbor rather than in Europe. In addition to learning about the highly demanding and essential jobs that code breakers held during World War II, it was surprising to learn how few women were given the opportunity to do this. I also enjoyed Sara Ackerman’s stunning descriptions of The Big Island of Hawaii including the beautiful beaches, secluded waterfalls, lush lands with exclusive vegetation and remarkable sunsets. It almost made me feel like I was in Hawaii with the characters. Sara Ackerman, based her book,The Codebreaker’s Secret, on real historic people, places and events even though it was a work of fiction. Set twenty-two years apart, Sara Ackerman, expertly wove the two stories together. The two women protagonists worked relentlessly to solve two different murder mysteries. At the conclusion, the two storylines collided into a stunning and satisfying ending. In 1943, Isabel Cooper was a brilliant codebreaker who was employed through the United States Navy. Her talent and skills earned her a place in “the dungeon “ at Station HYPO in Hawaii. Isabel was the only woman that worked in “the dungeon “ but that did not bother her at all. Her dearest older brother, Walt, lost his life on December 7 when Pearl Harbor was attacked by the Japanese. Isabel was determined to revenge her brother’s death by deciphering as many secret codes as possible from the Japanese. She also had another motive for wanting to work in Hawaii. After her brother’s death, Isabel received several letters from her brother’s war buddies that expressed their sorrow for her brother’s death. Isabel wanted to meet these war buddies so she could find out more about Walt’s final few days. One letter in particular stood out to her. It was from someone named Matteo. Walt had mentioned him in his letters to her before his tragic death. Apparently, Walt and Matteo had become best friends. Isabel, with the help of her roommate, sought Matteo out. Matteo offered to take Isabel to all the places he and Walt had frequented together. He hoped by doing this and sharing the stories of their discoveries Isabel would find solace. Isabel and Mateo began to develop feelings for each other but neither one of them was brave enough to admit it to the other. Isabel was instrumental in breaking several very important codes during this time. She had to keep her work a secret from all the people she knew. While Isabel became increasingly involved with Matteo and started spending more time with him, her roommate also became involved with someone. Then her roommate disappeared. She had been out swimming with her boyfriend and was ruled drowned. Her body was never discovered. Isabel was not buying this explanation but no one was willing to listen to her concerns or suspicions. In 1965, Lu Freitas, a newly hired journalist, landed the best story of her career. She talked her way into being allowed to write a story about Rockerfeller’s new Mauna Kea Beach Hotel in Hawaii. To Lu’s surprise, Matteo, world famous photographer and journalist was invited as well. Lu and Matteo slowly formed a working friendship. When a high profile guest was reported missing, Lu and Matteo joined forces to help discover what could have happened to her. While searching for clues about the guest’s disappearance, Lu and Matteo discovered something even more shocking. The Codebreaker’s Secret by Sara Ackerman was about secrets, romance, friendships, ambition, challenges that women faced of being accepted in certain fields of work, the difficulty of breaking and deciphering codes during World War II,, grief, hope and longing. I was immediately pulled into this story and enjoyed it very much. I highly recommend this book. Publication was August 2, 2022. Thank you to Mira Publishers for allowing me to read The Codebreaker’s Secret by Sara Ackerman through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Madeline Martin

    The Codebreaker’s Secret is a brilliantly written dual timeline narrative with a mystery that will keep you reading late into the night. Between ‘the dungeon’ in Pearl Harbor where codes are broken to the stunning sugar-white sand of the Kohala Coast in Hawaii, Ackerman’s settings blossom with stunning imagery as she brings to life characters that will stay with you long after you’ve finished the book. A fabulous read that makes me want to drop everything and travel to Hawaii!

  5. 5 out of 5

    "Avonna

    Check out all my reviews at: https://www.avonnalovesgenres.com THE CODEBREAKER’S SECRET by Sara Ackerman is an engaging historical fiction/mystery story told in the two intertwining timelines of 1943 and 1965 and both beautifully depicted on the lush Hawaiian Islands. This is a standalone story filled with intrigue, murder, and HEA love. In 1943, Isabel “Izzy” Cooper has finally realized her dream to work as a codebreaker in Hawaii to avenge her brother’s death when Pearl Harbor was attacked. She Check out all my reviews at: https://www.avonnalovesgenres.com THE CODEBREAKER’S SECRET by Sara Ackerman is an engaging historical fiction/mystery story told in the two intertwining timelines of 1943 and 1965 and both beautifully depicted on the lush Hawaiian Islands. This is a standalone story filled with intrigue, murder, and HEA love. In 1943, Isabel “Izzy” Cooper has finally realized her dream to work as a codebreaker in Hawaii to avenge her brother’s death when Pearl Harbor was attacked. She meets her brother’s best-friend and pilot, Mateo Russi and as the two share their stories of her brother, they begin to get closer, but Russi has secrets of his own. In 1965, Luana “Lu” Freitas lands her first big assignment covering the grand opening of Louis Roosevelt’s Mauna Kea Beach Hotel. Lu meets the famous Time magazine photographer, Mateo Russi who give her publishing advice as they become friends. When a famous singer goes missing and is believed dead, Lu and Russi begin to uncover secrets which have ties all the way back to Izzy and her codebreaking during WWII. I enjoyed both timelines in this story and the mystery conclusion which tied them both together. Izzy and Lu are both strong, intelligent female lead characters. Russi is a man who has been shaped by loss and the war and I loved that he ultimately found peace and his HEA. All the characters were fully fleshed and believable. The plot starts a bit slow, but it does pick up and pulls you in so you cannot put the book down. The author does an amazing job of painting word pictures of Hawaii and the culture which makes for another layer to the story. The WWII history and the descriptions of the codebreaking failures and successes were interesting, also. This is an intriguing historical fiction read with mystery and romance included.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews

    1943 - We broke the code….we broke the code…well everyone didn’t….Isabel broke the code that the team had been working on for months. Breaking the code opened a position for Isabel in Hawaii where her brother’s plane was shot down during the attack on Pearl Harbor. It was interesting to learn about how they intercepted messages and decoded them during the war. Isabel couldn’t wait to get there so she could find the places where her brother had been. She meets his best friend, Matteo Russi. 1965 - 1943 - We broke the code….we broke the code…well everyone didn’t….Isabel broke the code that the team had been working on for months. Breaking the code opened a position for Isabel in Hawaii where her brother’s plane was shot down during the attack on Pearl Harbor. It was interesting to learn about how they intercepted messages and decoded them during the war. Isabel couldn’t wait to get there so she could find the places where her brother had been. She meets his best friend, Matteo Russi. 1965 - We meet Lu Freitas who is a journalist that gets no credit and is writing stories about the new Mauna Kea Beach Hotel. We met Matteo Russi again. While she is investigating, a friend, Joni Diaz, goes missing. The tension heats up when a body and a ring are found. Is it Joni’s or Gloria’s from 1943. Is there a connection between someone at Pearl Harbor in 1943 and today? THE CODEBREAKER’S secret will appeal to historical fiction fans, mystery fans, and women’s fiction fans because of some romance, but it mostly will keep your interest for the history part. I never knew about the codebreaker team at the Pearl Harbor site. 4/5 This book was given to me by the publisher via NetGalley for an honest review.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Julia Kelly

    I always look forward to a new Sara Ackerman book, and The Codebreaker's Secret did not disappoint! Ackerman weaves together the worlds of World War II and 1960s Hawaii with intrepid, smart female characters who must uncover a decades-old mystery that is sure to keep readers guessing to the end. This book is a triumph! I always look forward to a new Sara Ackerman book, and The Codebreaker's Secret did not disappoint! Ackerman weaves together the worlds of World War II and 1960s Hawaii with intrepid, smart female characters who must uncover a decades-old mystery that is sure to keep readers guessing to the end. This book is a triumph!

  8. 4 out of 5

    Addison Armstrong

    I read this in twenty-four hours! The characters are likable and true, the settings are vivid and lush, and the two timelines collide in spectacular fashion. THE CODEBREAKER'S SECRET will tug on your heartstrings with its heartfelt grief and longing as well as its enduring hope and resilience. "Maybe that was the secret to dying—to live a life with so much heart that, when you go, you are never really gone." I read this in twenty-four hours! The characters are likable and true, the settings are vivid and lush, and the two timelines collide in spectacular fashion. THE CODEBREAKER'S SECRET will tug on your heartstrings with its heartfelt grief and longing as well as its enduring hope and resilience. "Maybe that was the secret to dying—to live a life with so much heart that, when you go, you are never really gone."

  9. 4 out of 5

    Shannon

    This is one of my fav genres of historical fiction and I love how I always learn something new reading Sara’s books. The Hawaiian setting is tropical and atmospheric while also underscoring the important war work that went on there and the everyday men and women who made big and small differences. In this book we get to know more about Isabel, a smart, socially anxious young codebreaker who’s grieving her dead brother and falls for his best friend while he shows her around the island. Highly rec This is one of my fav genres of historical fiction and I love how I always learn something new reading Sara’s books. The Hawaiian setting is tropical and atmospheric while also underscoring the important war work that went on there and the everyday men and women who made big and small differences. In this book we get to know more about Isabel, a smart, socially anxious young codebreaker who’s grieving her dead brother and falls for his best friend while he shows her around the island. Highly recommended for fans of The Rose code by @katequinn5975 or the movie Pearl Harbor. My favourite part of the book was the surfing lesson scene (so swoony!). Much thanks to Netgalley and Mira Books for an early digital copy and Libro.fm for an ALC!!

  10. 5 out of 5

    Carol (Reading Ladies)

    4.5 Stars Welcome to my stop on the Harlequin Trade Publishing 2022 Summer Blog Tour for Historical Fiction. Thank you #Netgalley @HarliquinBooks (Mira) @HTPBooks @BookClubbish for a complimentary e ARC of #TheCodebreakersSecret upon my request. All opinions are my own. Set in 1943, The Codebreaker’s Secret by Sara Ackerman is a story about Isabel and the codebreakers who work in the “dungeon” at Station HYPO in Pearl Harbor. They are in a race to retrieve data from the airwaves to help bring down 4.5 Stars Welcome to my stop on the Harlequin Trade Publishing 2022 Summer Blog Tour for Historical Fiction. Thank you #Netgalley @HarliquinBooks (Mira) @HTPBooks @BookClubbish for a complimentary e ARC of #TheCodebreakersSecret upon my request. All opinions are my own. Set in 1943, The Codebreaker’s Secret by Sara Ackerman is a story about Isabel and the codebreakers who work in the “dungeon” at Station HYPO in Pearl Harbor. They are in a race to retrieve data from the airwaves to help bring down the enemy. Isabel is grieving the loss of her brother as she faces sexism and other difficult working conditions. Circumstances look a little brighter when she meets her brother’s best friend, a hotshot pilot. A second timeline takes place in 1965 as journalist Lu Freitas covers the grand opening of a glamourous Mauna Kea Beach Hotel and meets a veteran photographer. As a team, they uncover a secret from the war days. I look forward to Sara Ackerman’s compelling and page-turning stories because I’ve come to trust her as a solid author. In her trademark style, her books (so far) are set in Hawaii around the time of Pearl Harbor. Her stories are a perfect blend of historical fiction/women’s fiction that feature island descriptions, strong, independent women, friendship and women supporting women themes, and sprinkles of intrigue and romance. I appreciate no profanity (or very very limited), closed-door romance, and uplifting content.. I’m proud to be an Ackerman completist and I can recommend her books to anyone! Ackerman’s main characters are likable, determined, inspiring, and brave. I feel like Isabel and I would be friends if I were a codebreaker, and I cheered for her as she held her own in a field dominated by men in the 1940s. I especially appreciate Ackerman’s themes of women helping women and friendship present in The Codebreaker’s Secret and in her other work. Ackerman has an easy reading and pleasant writing style: thoughtful character development, page-turning plot, and vivid, descriptive details without being overwritten. In her recent releases, she has been stretching herself as a writer by implementing dual timelines. She handles the transitions well, and I’ve enjoyed the more complex storylines. The Codebreaker’s Secret is perfect for readers who appreciate a historical fiction/women’s fiction mashup, for fans who love a sprinkling of (closed door) romance and mystery, for readers looking for a vacation or weekend read, and for book clubs who enjoy discussable themes. This is a heartfelt, compelling, pageturning, and uplifting story that women of all ages will enjoy! For more reviews visit my blog www.readingladies.com where this review was first published.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Literary Redhead

    Thrilled to get this wonderful ARC thanks to Sara Ackerman, Harlequin, and NetGalley! I love Sara's histfic novels set in Hawaii where she lives. They're immersive character-driven gems, with covers that rival the most gorgeous in print. And her latest is her very best yet! Highly recommended for histfic fans, lovers of books that make history come alive, and gripping stories that stay with you. Synopsis: 1943. As war in the Pacific rages on, Isabel Cooper and her codebreaker colleagues huddle i Thrilled to get this wonderful ARC thanks to Sara Ackerman, Harlequin, and NetGalley! I love Sara's histfic novels set in Hawaii where she lives. They're immersive character-driven gems, with covers that rival the most gorgeous in print. And her latest is her very best yet! Highly recommended for histfic fans, lovers of books that make history come alive, and gripping stories that stay with you. Synopsis: 1943. As war in the Pacific rages on, Isabel Cooper and her codebreaker colleagues huddle in “the dungeon” at Station HYPO in Pearl Harbor, deciphering secrets plucked from the airwaves in a race to bring down the enemy. Isabel has only one wish: to avenge her brother’s death. But she soon finds life has other plans when she meets his best friend, a hotshot pilot with secrets of his own. 1965. Fledgling journalist Lu Freitas comes home to Hawai'i to cover the grand opening of the glamorous Mauna Kea Beach Hotel, Rockefeller's newest and grandest project. When a high-profile guest goes missing, Lu forms an unlikely alliance with an intimidating veteran photographer to unravel the mystery. The two make a shocking discovery that stirs up memories and uncovers an explosive secret from the war days. A secret that only a codebreaker can crack. #thecodebreakerssecret #netgalley

  12. 4 out of 5

    Nursebookie

    TITLE: The Codebreaker's Secret: A WWII Novel AUTHOR: Sara Ackerman PUB DATE: 08.02.2022 Now Available Top reasons to read The Codebreaker’s Secret 🌺 The gorgeous setting of Hawaii will transport and immerse you into the story 🏔 The historical detail and research that built up in the story - the women code breakers whose role during the war needed to be recognized 📚 Two wonderful stories in a dual timeline that weaved into a great historical fiction and a murder mystery, with a touch of romance - amaz TITLE: The Codebreaker's Secret: A WWII Novel AUTHOR: Sara Ackerman PUB DATE: 08.02.2022 Now Available Top reasons to read The Codebreaker’s Secret 🌺 The gorgeous setting of Hawaii will transport and immerse you into the story 🏔 The historical detail and research that built up in the story - the women code breakers whose role during the war needed to be recognized 📚 Two wonderful stories in a dual timeline that weaved into a great historical fiction and a murder mystery, with a touch of romance - amazing twists and turns kept me turning those pages 🌺 Well written - exciting premise with code breaking Japanese cipher, highlighting strong women protagonist set in the Pacific - Pearl Harbor. 📚 This is a must read for historical fiction fans!

  13. 5 out of 5

    Renee

    "Maybe that was the secret to dying, to live a life with so much heart that, when you go, you are never really gone." This story has it all--men in uniform, intelligent women stepping in to save the day, exotic locals, second chance at love, spies, a murder mystery . . . and did I mention men in uniform? 😂 A fast, engrossing read/listen. I really enjoyed it! "Maybe that was the secret to dying, to live a life with so much heart that, when you go, you are never really gone." This story has it all--men in uniform, intelligent women stepping in to save the day, exotic locals, second chance at love, spies, a murder mystery . . . and did I mention men in uniform? 😂 A fast, engrossing read/listen. I really enjoyed it!

  14. 5 out of 5

    Andie Newton

    What a fantastic book! Historical fiction fans will love this atmospheric WWII book from Sara Ackerman. I read it in a matter of days (rare for me) and by the end of it I was looking up flights to Hawaii. This book has 2 timelines, equally engrossing with characters I fell in love with. Meticulously researched, rich and immersive, The Codebreaker’s Secret will have you enthralled. A must-read for all fans of the genre. I absolutely loved it.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Elise Hooper

    The Codebreaker’s Secret is Sara Ackerman at her best! In this clever dual-timeline novel, she writes about two smart, adventurous women solving a captivating historical mystery, all set against the tropical beauty of Hawaii during World War II and the 1960s, two fascinating eras. When I finished this book, I was more than ready to book a one-way ticket to the Big Island.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Elliot A

    Thank you to the publisher, MIRA and NetGalley, for providing me with an ARC of The Codebreaker’s Secret in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own. The Gist It is again written in the perspective of two women living in two different time periods but are still connected. The Details We have two female protagonists. Isabel Cooper works as a codebreaker at Station HYPO in Pearl Harbor, in 1943 and in her free time she retraces the last days of her brother who was killed during the at Thank you to the publisher, MIRA and NetGalley, for providing me with an ARC of The Codebreaker’s Secret in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own. The Gist It is again written in the perspective of two women living in two different time periods but are still connected. The Details We have two female protagonists. Isabel Cooper works as a codebreaker at Station HYPO in Pearl Harbor, in 1943 and in her free time she retraces the last days of her brother who was killed during the attack on Pearl Harbour by Japanese flight fighters. And then we are brought to 1965 and meet the young journalist Lu Freitas. She is sent to her home island Hawai’i to report about the grand opening of Rockefeller’s glamorous Mauna Kea Beach Hotel. Both women are soft, likable and a bit plain. They are, no doubt, intelligent and highly talented. Unfortunately, the author could not bring the powerful facetes of their characters to full life. I found myself looking for a deeper connection with them, but was disappointed, because there was nothing more to find. The writing was equally soft. It had a nice flow, was easy to follow, but about half through the book, I had to push through some boring sections. It was idling in the middle of the story and I was debating if I should continue or not. At the end I was glad that I didn’t give up, because the story picks up in tempo and entertainment. Yes, it is a historical fiction, but also a mystery. That is the charm of this story. We are faced with a similar destiny of both women, they are connected without knowing, and even closer than they imagine. There is a nice twist, and a reminder that life has a mind on its own more often than we think. The Verdict Overall, this story is a pleasant read. You will not be faced with cruel descriptions. As an historical fiction I would describe it as safe; as a mystery as subtle.It is a novel you can pick up, enjoy and read before bedtime. I recommend this book to everybody who is looking for a bit more than historical fiction, loves soft romance and is still not bored by the historical elements.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Molly Jaber (Page Turners And Sweet Tea)

    When it comes to historical novels, I want a beautifully written WWII novel. I’ll be content! And, let me tell ya. 𝑻𝒉𝒆 𝑪𝒐𝒅𝒆𝒃𝒓𝒆𝒂𝒌𝒆𝒓’𝒔 𝑺𝒆𝒄𝒓𝒆𝒕 by 𝖲𝖺𝗋𝖺 𝖠𝖼𝗄𝖾𝗋𝗆𝖺𝗇 was absolutely a beautifully penned historical novel! As with 𝑹𝒂𝒅𝒂𝒓 𝑮𝒊𝒓𝒍𝒔, this story is filled with an intriguing plot line, and masterfully chiseled characters. I loved the mystery & the romance that’s weaved into the story. The dual time like of the story was intriguing and beautifully done! This 4 ⭐️, well researched, fantabulously chise When it comes to historical novels, I want a beautifully written WWII novel. I’ll be content! And, let me tell ya. 𝑻𝒉𝒆 𝑪𝒐𝒅𝒆𝒃𝒓𝒆𝒂𝒌𝒆𝒓’𝒔 𝑺𝒆𝒄𝒓𝒆𝒕 by 𝖲𝖺𝗋𝖺 𝖠𝖼𝗄𝖾𝗋𝗆𝖺𝗇 was absolutely a beautifully penned historical novel! As with 𝑹𝒂𝒅𝒂𝒓 𝑮𝒊𝒓𝒍𝒔, this story is filled with an intriguing plot line, and masterfully chiseled characters. I loved the mystery & the romance that’s weaved into the story. The dual time like of the story was intriguing and beautifully done! This 4 ⭐️, well researched, fantabulously chiseled novel is one that should not be missed! The history comes alive within the pages & the characters steal your heart! Once again, I’m pleased with the outcome of another historical novel from the talented hands of 𝖲𝖺𝗋𝖺 𝖠𝖼𝗄𝖾𝗋𝗆𝖺𝗇! * I received a complimentary copy of this book from the Author/Publisher and was under no obligation to post a review, positive or negative.*⁣

  18. 4 out of 5

    Kira

    I have read my fair share of World War 2 books so far this year and I was expecting to love this just like all the others I've read but it turned out to be a bit disappointing for me. The whole premise of the book was not something that completely grabbed my attention, Isabel being a codebreaker and posted to Pearl Harbor had my attention at the start but I quickly lost interest tbh. The dual timeline with Lu's story played a part in making it less appealing for me as well. This had a great potent I have read my fair share of World War 2 books so far this year and I was expecting to love this just like all the others I've read but it turned out to be a bit disappointing for me. The whole premise of the book was not something that completely grabbed my attention, Isabel being a codebreaker and posted to Pearl Harbor had my attention at the start but I quickly lost interest tbh. The dual timeline with Lu's story played a part in making it less appealing for me as well. This had a great potential imo but I simply couldn't connect with any of these characters despite such a beautiful setting and a strong plot and this may completely be solely because of my own headspace rn, I may have to give it another try someday.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Carla

    I have read and enjoyed previous books written by Sara Ackerman, so was delighted when I received both an audiobook and ebook for review. This book did not disappoint and will be in my top books for 2022. There have been several books about female codebreakers during WWII, but this is the only one I have read set in Hawaii. In 1943, Isabel Cooper worked hard in Washington, in order to secure a spot in Hawaii. She and her co-workers are stationed in "the dungeon" at Station HYPO in Pearl Harbor. I have read and enjoyed previous books written by Sara Ackerman, so was delighted when I received both an audiobook and ebook for review. This book did not disappoint and will be in my top books for 2022. There have been several books about female codebreakers during WWII, but this is the only one I have read set in Hawaii. In 1943, Isabel Cooper worked hard in Washington, in order to secure a spot in Hawaii. She and her co-workers are stationed in "the dungeon" at Station HYPO in Pearl Harbor. Isabel wants to do everything she can to avenge her brother's death. While there, she meets his best friend, Mateo Russi, a hotshot pilot with secrets, and they begin a friendship that has a lot of chemistry, but they are both afraid to move forward. The second timeline is set in 1965, when a young reporter, Lu Freitas gets the opportunity to return home to Hawaii to cover the grand opening of the glamorous Mauna Kea Beach Hotel, Rockefeller's newest and grandest project. While there, she meets a well known and a bit grizzled photographer, Mateo Russi. The two work together when a celebrity guest and friend of both of them disappears. They also stumble upon some other information that takes them back to wartime. Can they decipher the clues they find? Will they find out what happened to their friend? I enjoy historical fiction, especially if there is a mystery or secret to be solved. Both of these timelines were well written and I am unable to say which I preferred more. The characters in the past and present were well drawn and developed. The story was realistic, especially when we saw the way Isabel (Izzy) was treated by the men she worked with and for. Izzy tried to be a good friend to her female colleagues and warned her roommate about some of the men she dated, but she wouldn't listen. Both Izzy and Lu are characters that are smart, brave, independent, fight for what they want, hard working and loyal. The males are more of supporting characters, but flesh out the book well. This story is a good mix of history and women's fiction, including themes of sexism, friendship, working hard, family and a smidgeon of romance. I love the Hawaiian setting, a constant in the books of Sara Ackerman that I have read. I definitely recommend this one. Jennifer Robideau narrated this story and did a wonderful job. She does a great job with the various voices and added expression, tone and emotion to make this a great book to listen to. I have listened to one other book she narrated (Red Sky Over Hawaii by Sara Ackerman) and will not hesitate to listen to others.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Barb in Maryland

    Best one yet from Sara Ackerman. The back cover description sets it up so well that I'll quote it here: 1943. As war in the Pacific rages on, Isabel Cooper and her codebreaker colleagues huddle in “the dungeon” at Station HYPO in Pearl Harbor, deciphering secrets plucked from the airwaves in a race to bring down the enemy. Isabel has only one wish: to avenge her brother’s death. But she soon finds life has other plans when she meets his best friend, a hotshot pilot with secrets of his own. 1965. Fl Best one yet from Sara Ackerman. The back cover description sets it up so well that I'll quote it here: 1943. As war in the Pacific rages on, Isabel Cooper and her codebreaker colleagues huddle in “the dungeon” at Station HYPO in Pearl Harbor, deciphering secrets plucked from the airwaves in a race to bring down the enemy. Isabel has only one wish: to avenge her brother’s death. But she soon finds life has other plans when she meets his best friend, a hotshot pilot with secrets of his own. 1965. Fledgling journalist Lu Freitas comes home to Hawai'i to cover the grand opening of the glamorous Mauna Kea Beach Hotel, Rockefeller's newest and grandest project. When a high-profile guest goes missing, Lu forms an unlikely alliance with an intimidating veteran photographer to unravel the mystery. The two make a shocking discovery that stirs up memories and uncovers an explosive secret from the war days. A secret that only a codebreaker can crack. The author cleverly weaves together the two different timelines and stories; both storylines are well developed, with lovely supporting characters. Izzy and Lu, our two heroines, are such real women that I had no trouble believing in them. One connection between the two stories is soon obvious; however, I will confess to being very slow on the uptake regarding a second and then a third link. The author's afterword clears up what history she tampered with to best serve her story. I'm old enough to remember that hotel opening and all the hoop-la, though never plump enough in the wallet to have actually stayed there. I'm not old enough to have walked on Kailua Beach in 1943, though I did walk that beach for years and I can verify that the author got the part bit the Pacific (Portuguese) man-o-war just right.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Sophia

    Two intrepid women, a shared mystery, war codebreaking, and a tropical island paradise make the latest Sara Ackerman historical fiction a lush and layered story for readers. I’ve only experienced one other book from the author, Radar Girls, so was expecting something of the same sort, but The Codebreaker’s Secret surprised me with a dual timeline and a murder mystery beyond the expected women’s history, side romance, and war elements set in Hawaii that are usual to her books. Once I adjusted to t Two intrepid women, a shared mystery, war codebreaking, and a tropical island paradise make the latest Sara Ackerman historical fiction a lush and layered story for readers. I’ve only experienced one other book from the author, Radar Girls, so was expecting something of the same sort, but The Codebreaker’s Secret surprised me with a dual timeline and a murder mystery beyond the expected women’s history, side romance, and war elements set in Hawaii that are usual to her books. Once I adjusted to this change in structure, I settled into the separate and then merged tales of Isabel and Lu. At first, I was more taken with Isabel’s tale set in the WWII period as a crack codebreaker who was sent to the top secret ‘basement’ in Hawaii after she earned the highest codebreaking status and felt the fulfillment that she has likely saved many American lives. Walt, her Navy pilot brother came down there in the Pearl Harbor attack and so there she must be to go up against the Japanese herself and crack their codes to beat them on behalf of her brother. Matteo, Walt’s best friend and fellow pilot who is eaten by a secret is someone she grows close to while doing her important work. Then, she stumbles over a dangerous possibility- a spy for the enemy among their own? Lu’s side was seeing her ambitions of being a successful journalist thwarted because she’s a woman, but has her chance to come home and cover the big hotel grand opening. Her friend disappears and a certain photographer named Matteo helps her, but the disappearance leads to a murder and a dark secret of the WWII days exposed. At first, as I said, I was drawn to Izzy’s time line, but Lu’s time line got going about half way and the two merged since a code turns up and Isobel is needed once again. I was glad to see the author’s writing pulled me in this second book and I was engaged with her characters and their situations. The mystery added a layer of suspense that is always a welcome element to me though it does end up rather pat. I was a sucker for the romance and was touched to see the author wrote in Matteo’s war and PTSD struggles that were only vaguely acknowledged or understood back then. There is a nice layered story as a result of it all. More than ever, I want to go back and hit Sara Ackerman’s backlist. WWII historical fictions with women protagonists set in the Pacific Theater are harder to find so that is a big compelling draw, but, in truth, it is her writing. She is slipping toward my favorite author list and I’m happy to see it. Do go, historical fiction fans, and put this on the reading stack. I rec'd an eARC from Net Galley to read in exchange for an honest review. My full review will post at Caffeinated Reviewer Aug 3rd.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Meg

    I was so excited to read the latest from Sara Ackerman! Things I loved about The Codebreaker's Secret: -Hawaii. Sara Ackerman's descriptions make me want to go back there -Strong female characters. I love that both Izzy and Lu are talented women who fight to use their skills in a man's world. -I really appreciated the portrayal of Matteo's PTSD, especially since it wasn't acknowledged during that time period. Things I didn't love as much: -I enjoyed the dual timeline, but things dragged a bit. I def I was so excited to read the latest from Sara Ackerman! Things I loved about The Codebreaker's Secret: -Hawaii. Sara Ackerman's descriptions make me want to go back there -Strong female characters. I love that both Izzy and Lu are talented women who fight to use their skills in a man's world. -I really appreciated the portrayal of Matteo's PTSD, especially since it wasn't acknowledged during that time period. Things I didn't love as much: -I enjoyed the dual timeline, but things dragged a bit. I definitely preferred the WWII timeline to the 1965 timeline. -Things wrapped up a bit too nicely at the end, it was a bit of a stretch for me. -The swearing was a bit more than I prefer in a book. Overall, I enjoyed this story a lot. It was interesting learning about codebreakers, the experience in Hawaii during WWII, and the hotel in the 60s. I recommend this story to anyone who loves dual timeline and historical fiction novels! Thanks to Harlequin Trade Publishing, NetGalley, and Sara Ackerman for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for my honest opinions!

  23. 5 out of 5

    The Lit Bitch

    I have adored Sara Ackerman’s books over the years. She writes such interesting novels about WWII that are set in Hawaii. Her passion for the island and its history really shine under her pen plus there is always a little bit of romance to entertain readers. I really enjoyed reading all of her books and find that each has been between a 4 and 5 star rating for me. When I saw this one was coming up, I made room on my review calendar for it. I hadn’t actually planned on reading it as soon as I did I have adored Sara Ackerman’s books over the years. She writes such interesting novels about WWII that are set in Hawaii. Her passion for the island and its history really shine under her pen plus there is always a little bit of romance to entertain readers. I really enjoyed reading all of her books and find that each has been between a 4 and 5 star rating for me. When I saw this one was coming up, I made room on my review calendar for it. I hadn’t actually planned on reading it as soon as I did but I knew I would read it before the summer was out. I had an excerpt on my blog and once I read the excerpt I found that I simply needed to just read the rest of the book so I picked it up much earlier than I anticipated. Ackerman’s book offer readers escapism and untold stories. If you love WWII novels but find the genre saturated with similar stories over and over again, Ackerman’s books are a fantastic option! This book itself offers a bit about female codebreakers during the war (a top topic in WWII era historical fiction) but in this book, the codebreaker isn’t in some London bunker trying to break German codes, she is on an exotic island trying to break Japanese codes while trying to grieve the loss of her brother. Admittedly this is the first book of Ackerman’s that I struggled with. It’s not that it wasn’t a good book it’s more that it just took it’s time getting there if that makes sense. It started out really strong, the first couple of chapters were well written and set readers up for an engrossing tale. But then somewhere around the 20% mark it started to lose steam for me. I had a hard time believing that Isabel wanted to go to Hawaii to basically retrace the footsteps of her deceased brother. On the surface it made sense but as we got into the story where she meets Mateo and retracing her brother’s favorite spots as a catalyst for their romance just felt weird and off to me. For me it just didn’t work and felt a little off. The first half of the book mostly covered Mateo and Isabel going to her brother’s favorite spots and Mateo documenting those spots and the whole time I was thinking “Why???? What’s the point of this???”. And Mateo’s devotion to all those spots and memories felt a little weird too. Can’t explain it but it just didn’t feel fitting some how. I struggled with Lu’s parts of the book too. There seemed to be zero connection between Lu and Mateo later on in the book and I just really struggled to get into that part of the story. For some reason this whole book felt very mismatched and strung together but not in a good way. After the 50% mark things eventually picked up and got better (no spoilers!) but by that point I was already feeling disconnected and bored with some of the story. It took too long getting there and getting to the interesting parts for my taste. This was unexpected for me because Ackerman’s books have generally been really good. This book started out with her trademark love of Hawaii and it’s war time history. I loved that part and I loved the descriptions of the island and it’s rugged beauty. But the characters felt lacking for me. While this book didn’t excite me as some of Ackerman’s other novels, I think it’s still worth a read. It’s not bad but for me, I felt like her other novels were stronger and I think this one could have been better than it was. Ackerman is still an author that I recommend a lot to readers looking for ‘off the beaten path’ WWII novels. She is a marvelous writer and I love how she writes and the stories she tells, but in this one I think it could have been better.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Linda Zagon

    Sara Ackerman, Author of “The Codebreaker’s Secret” has written a captivating, intriguing, and suspenseful novel. The Genres for this novel are Historical Fiction, World War Two Historical Fiction, Women’s Fiction, and Mystery. There also is a dash of Suspense, and Romance. There are two timelines for this story set in Hawaii, 1943, and 1965. I love the way Sara Ackerman vividly describes the beautiful, threatening, and dangerous landscape. I would love to pack my bags and travel to the islands Sara Ackerman, Author of “The Codebreaker’s Secret” has written a captivating, intriguing, and suspenseful novel. The Genres for this novel are Historical Fiction, World War Two Historical Fiction, Women’s Fiction, and Mystery. There also is a dash of Suspense, and Romance. There are two timelines for this story set in Hawaii, 1943, and 1965. I love the way Sara Ackerman vividly describes the beautiful, threatening, and dangerous landscape. I would love to pack my bags and travel to the islands of Hawaii. The author is a wonderful storyteller, and I appreciate the detailed colorful, and dramatic description of the characters. The characters are described as complex and complicated. In 1943, after the tragic bombing of Pearl Harbor, Isabel Cooper became one of the top codebreakers, who is instrumental in deciphering Japanese secret codes with a group of men. Isabel is mourning the loss of her brother, Walt who died during the initial bombing of Pearl Harbor. She meets her brother’s best friend, a pilot, and a dare-devil in many things. Both of them have secrets that they can’t share. In 1965, Lu Freitas, a young journalist, who had lived in Hawaii, covered the opening of Rockefellers’ Mauna Kea Beach Hotel. There are prominent and famous people. A Veteran Photographer does give her suggestions. He seems arrogant and mysterious. Lu also recognizes that something is troubling this man. One of Lu’s friends, who is a special guest goes missing. Hawaii seems to harbor some danger and mystery. Sara Ackerman seamlessly weaves the two timelines together. I enjoyed this intriguing novel and highly recommend this to other readers.

  25. 5 out of 5

    C. McKenzie

    The Codebreaker's Secret hops back and forth between the WWII era and the 1960s. It carries a love story and an unsolved murder across those decades, developing characters over these twenty years and introducing new ones as well as complications. This was a satisfying and enjoyable read that, while set in two highly charged periods of history, deals mostly with the human factors--courage, betrayal, murder, and love. The Codebreaker's Secret hops back and forth between the WWII era and the 1960s. It carries a love story and an unsolved murder across those decades, developing characters over these twenty years and introducing new ones as well as complications. This was a satisfying and enjoyable read that, while set in two highly charged periods of history, deals mostly with the human factors--courage, betrayal, murder, and love.

  26. 4 out of 5

    theliterateleprechaun

    I love Ackerman’s WW2 Hawai’i stories! I’m amazed how much she’s able to reveal about what it was like to live on the islands during wartime. I loved reading about the origins of the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel! Venture capitalist Laurance S. Rockefeller was inspired to create this great hotel and Ackerman reveals the process of narrowing it down from 9 winning designs, to the challenges along the way to completion. It’s with the third opening celebration, the House Party where only a select few are i I love Ackerman’s WW2 Hawai’i stories! I’m amazed how much she’s able to reveal about what it was like to live on the islands during wartime. I loved reading about the origins of the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel! Venture capitalist Laurance S. Rockefeller was inspired to create this great hotel and Ackerman reveals the process of narrowing it down from 9 winning designs, to the challenges along the way to completion. It’s with the third opening celebration, the House Party where only a select few are invited, that we meet Joni Diaz and journalist Lu Freitas who works for Sunset Magazine. Lou has been hired to cover the opening and is digging into the stories of the hotel and its people, who it seems are more interesting than the guests. I’m a lot like Lou, I don’t function without coffee, but I’d like to be more like Joni, flamboyant and carefree! Ackerman’s characters feel like my best friends when I’m reading. Equally wonderful and fully satisfying my geeky side, is the plot featuring Station Hypo at Pearl Harbour. This was one of the main codebreaking units in the Pacific and Isabel Cooper, the only female, works as a cryptoanalyst here. She’s gifted with narrowing down cribs (a way to unlock a code) and is essential in her work with the Japanese cipher machine, Magenta. I loved her personal growth and watching her balance her grief, work and romance. The setting is spectacular because the author was born and raised in Hawai’i. She unlocks the land of colour for readers, has us longing for chicken long rice and lomi lomi salmon, allows us to breathe in the rich plumeria and the oiled hardwood, and gently cools us down with warm breezes and swaying palms. I loved learning about the difference between the naval code JN-25 and the diplomatic code as well as Operation Vengeance. Neither of these felt like an info dump, but were well infused in the narrative. Last, but not least, let’s agree that this is a spectacular cover! Now I’m craving shave ice… I was gifted this advance copy by Sara Ackerman, Harlequin Trade Publishing, MIRA, and NetGalley and was under no obligation to provide a review.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Annie McDonnell

    Sara Ackerman does it again with THE CODEBREAKER’S Secret. I love heading to Hawaii and learning more about the history there. Sara always brings up things that I never knew existed. Sara introduces us to another sensational part of the history Through a dual timeline that relations. In the earlier years bringing Isabell Cooper I’m on the codebreakers reading the code from the enemy during World War II. She lost her brother and it’s full of vengeance but then she meets her brother’s best friend M Sara Ackerman does it again with THE CODEBREAKER’S Secret. I love heading to Hawaii and learning more about the history there. Sara always brings up things that I never knew existed. Sara introduces us to another sensational part of the history Through a dual timeline that relations. In the earlier years bringing Isabell Cooper I’m on the codebreakers reading the code from the enemy during World War II. She lost her brother and it’s full of vengeance but then she meets her brother’s best friend Mateo and things start to change course. 1965 is a year when a Hawaiian hotel owned by the Rockafellers has a guest go missing and only a couple breakers I can figure things out. I had fun reading about something that involves the Rockefellers boating, being from Long Island, New York. Sara is always teaching me about “firsts”. Thank you Sara Ackerman for bringing Hawaii to life and taking me away with a book I did not want to put down.

  28. 5 out of 5

    E

    Another good book by Sara Ackerman. This one also takes place in Hawaii during WWII and 1965; it flips back and forth. The characters are great, and the story just flows.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Cassie’s Reviews

    I cannot stop thinking about this book I was so grateful to have received this book early for my book club! This book takes place during two time periods, the first part takes in 1943 and then in 1965. It’s 1943 and we meet Isabel Cooper she lost her older brother whom she loved very much in the attack on Pearl Harbor. She’s now working as a code breaker, she’s helping solve Japanese Naval codes. Woman are not given the credit as their mail counter parts, but she knows if she solves the codes it I cannot stop thinking about this book I was so grateful to have received this book early for my book club! This book takes place during two time periods, the first part takes in 1943 and then in 1965. It’s 1943 and we meet Isabel Cooper she lost her older brother whom she loved very much in the attack on Pearl Harbor. She’s now working as a code breaker, she’s helping solve Japanese Naval codes. Woman are not given the credit as their mail counter parts, but she knows if she solves the codes it will save many lives. When Isabel is offered a chance to go to Hawaii and help solve codes there, she knows this is the chance to track down her brothers friend he was close too, and also see the life he lived before he died. While in Hawaii Isabel stumbles into a mystery that will stick with her for many years and her life changes overnight. In 1965 Lu Freitas is aspiring to become a journalist that’s taken seriously, when she’s given the chance to prover herself she grabs it. Now she’s headed to the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel for its grand opening. While heading to the hotel she meets a famous woman and befriends her. Lu is shocked when her new friend disappears, determined to uncover what happened Lu begins to investigate and soon uncover a missing link to the past. This book was unbelievable I was so immersed in the characters and their story I couldn’t put it down! Five stars!

  30. 5 out of 5

    Laura Hill

    Thank you to Harlequin Trade Publishing and NetGalley for providing an advance copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. The book will be published on August 2nd, 2022. Writing: 4/5 Plot: 3.5/5 Characters: 4/5 Very engaging story about Isabel Cooper — a crack codebreaker serving in Hawaii during WWII. While the plot is a little clunky, the writing draws you in, the characters are wonderful, and the descriptions of Hawaii, code breakers, and smart women playing chess were lots of fun. I t Thank you to Harlequin Trade Publishing and NetGalley for providing an advance copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. The book will be published on August 2nd, 2022. Writing: 4/5 Plot: 3.5/5 Characters: 4/5 Very engaging story about Isabel Cooper — a crack codebreaker serving in Hawaii during WWII. While the plot is a little clunky, the writing draws you in, the characters are wonderful, and the descriptions of Hawaii, code breakers, and smart women playing chess were lots of fun. I thought the author did a decent job of portraying intelligent, working women at the time: no heavy handed agenda — just women getting along as well as they could (and that was pretty well!) given their situation. Decent male characters as well. Very enjoyable!

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