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The Secrets Act by Alison Weatherby

Publication Date 06 01 2022

Codebreaker. Friend. Spy?


Pearl and Ellen work at top-secret codebreaking HQ, Bletchley Park.

Pearl is the youngest. A messenger at sixteen, she’s untidy, lively, bright, and half in love with the wrong boy, Richard. Her circle of friends overlaps with his – the dashing young men on their motorcycles who courier the secrets that Bletchley deciphers.

Ellen is a codebreaker. Reserved, analytical and beautiful. She never expected to get close to a girl like Pearl – or fall for a chap like Dennis.

But when tragedy strikes, their logical world is upended, with both friends caught in a spy plot that rocks the very heart of the war effort. Who can they turn to now? Who can they trust? And above all, can they unmask the traitor in their midst before it’s too late?

Five Star Review

Accomplished prose combined with a beautiful and tender tale of female friendship make The Secrets Act a gripping read.

Naïve Ellen travels to Buckinghamshire, eager to assist the war effort. A slightly abrasive and street-wise Pearl meets her at the train station. Their initial introduction is awkward but is a defining moment in their lives. When tragedy strikes, they are unsure of who to trust but they have each other right?

Weatherby’s Young Adult debut is a stunning historical mystery, elevated above other titles by authentic insights into the time period which add to the plot’s pace and suspense. As a grandparent and teacher it is especially wonderful to see Ellen, who is autistic, portrayed in such a heroic and beautiful way. Please do read the acknowledgements for more insight.

It’s easy to become swept up in the romance of the time but the author succeeds in making us deeply invested in the disclosure of the culprit and the endearing friendship that develops between these two wonderful young women.

A thrilling mystery with strong female characters and a hint of romance, perfect for Young Adults as well as the more mature amongst us. Click on the image to buy.

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