In 1942, Charlotte Gray, a young Scottish woman, heads for Occupied France on a dual mission - officially, to run an apparently simple errand for a British special operations group and unofficially, to search for her lover, an English airman missing in action.
As the people in the small town of Lavaurette prepare to meet their terrible destiny, the harrowing truth of what took place in 'the dark years' is finally revealed.
Faulks has taken a very old-fashioned love story - the dashing pilot separated by war from his spirited 'gal' - and made of it an unbearably moving novel. In London, in 1942, Charlotte Gray's linguistic talent and resourceful nature attract the attention of the Intelligence Services. Supposing her lover to be lost somewhere over France, she agrees to leave the black-out and her stifling job to run their 'errand'. What follows is a thrilling tale of secret assignations, bicycling down country roads in the inky-black night, meagre meals taken in draughty outhouses and keeping faith with comrades. The small town of Lavaurette is in the Free Zone but the political landscape swiftly changes and we experience those dark weeks with unflinching immediacy. Faulks writes with humanity and grace about the ambiguities and shortcomings of the human spirit: despite our chilling capacity for weakness and cruelty there is some possibility of redemption. This is a fine book. (Kirkus UK)
Number Of Pages: 512
Published: July 1999
Dimensions (cm): 19.8 x 13.2 x 3.3
Weight (kg): 0.338