The novel begins in June of 1940 when the Germans march into Paris, moves to Lisbon, and evolves in Lourenço Marques. With Rudolf and Aleece Bamberger, a young German-French Jewish couple fleeing the Nazis who become embroiled in intrigue and espionage.
Lourenço Marques is the neutral East African colonial capital of Portuguese Mozambique. But with the advent of World War II it is now an intelligence listening-post and a hotbed of secret agents and spies reporting on shipping, funding pro-Axis factions in neighboring South Africa, and all the while engaged in skullduggery, deceit and espionage against rival intelligence services.
Safe at last—or so it seems at first—the Bamberger’s settle warily in Lourenço Marques. Aleece, a French citizen, finds work at the British consulate while Rudolf, her German husband, but an emigrant to France before the war and a former perfume chemist in Paris, drifts helpless into the hands of the Abwehr spymaster, Ludwig Janke. His tentacles run deep through the tranquil colonial capital and his fearsome espionage operation soon ensnares Rudolf and threatens him into cooperating.
With spy-thriller plotting the novel re-creates with vivid flourishes Axis and Allied operatives in their effort to bring to their respective foreign capitals the latest intelligence from this once quiet, but now vast neutral harbor situated at the forefront of Indian Ocean shipping lanes.
Header photo http://memoria-africa.ua.pt/