Proud Sorrows (A Billy Boyle WWII Mystery #18) (Hardcover)

Proud Sorrows (A Billy Boyle WWII Mystery #18) By James R. Benn Cover Image
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In the eighteenth installment in this fan-favorite WWII mystery series, US Army Captain Billy Boyle investigates a murder in a charming English village, where personal vendettas tangle with wartime espionage.

Norfolk, England, November 1944: After a series of dangerous missions in the South of France, US Army Captain Billy Boyle is finally on leave, and is settling into a peaceful rest at the country estate of Sir Richard Seaton, the father of Billy’s British lover, Diana. Seaton Manor is a comfortable haven, and Billy is eager to spend a few precious days in Diana’s company pretending the war is far away.

Unfortunately, Billy’s leave is cut short when a crashed German bomber resurfaces off the coast with the corpse of a British officer in the pilot seat. The nearby village of Slewford hosts a top-secret military intelligence operation, home to high-ranking German POWs, and so the crash is a matter of national security. Billy is assigned by the commander of the POW facility to investigate. After the plane is discovered, a local villager is murdered—and suddenly what had appeared to be a failed enemy military operation takes on an even more sinister aspect. All Billy’s ex-Boston cop instincts are put to the test as he interviews the grieving, angry, and conniving citizens of this idyllic English country village in search of the truth.

About the Author

James R. Benn is the author of the Billy Boyle World War II mysteries. The debut, Billy Boyle, was selected as a Top Five Book of the Year by Book Sense and was a Dilys Award nominee, A Blind Goddess was longlisted for the IMPAC Dublin Literary Award, The Rest Is Silence was a Barry Award nominee, and The Devouring was a Macavity Award nominee. Benn, a former librarian, lives on the Gulf Coast of Florida with his wife, Deborah Mandel.

Praise For…

Praise for Proud Sorrows

A Barnes & Noble Best Book of 2023

“Benn’s Billy Boyle series has enchanted readers for many years and Proud Sorrows is an excellent addition. Benn is a master of suspense; his work builds to the end and never loosens its grip upon the reader. Even if this is your first Billy Boyle Mystery you will find Proud Sorrows a satisfying read!”
—Charles Todd, author of the Inspector Rutledge mysteries and the Bess Crawford mysteries

“Perfect for fans of WWII fiction and historical mysteries, the Billy Boyle series is always a favorite. Not only is this a compelling mystery, but the level of historical research makes this a fascinating window into one of the most tumultuous times in modern history.”
—Barnes & Noble

“A thrilling and ingenious plot . . . [Proud Sorrows] is in many ways Benn’s most beautifully conceptualized and realized book.”
The Day

“An exhilarating and often emotional adventure.”
—Beth Kanell, Stories That Matter

“The dialogue, settings, and the many characters all feel authentic. Tension builds to a rousing conclusion in Boyle’s Poirot-like quest to find the killer or killers and the motives . . . An interesting page-turner about little-known aspects of WWII.”
Historical Novels Review

“Benn’s meticulously plotted and suspenseful books are always full of historical detail and character development with a great mystery at the center.”
Mystery Scene

“Benn has a sure hand with pacing, and his way with character is nothing short of brilliant. This is an incredible series, worthy of being savored.”
Deadly Pleasures Mystery Magazine

“The mystery is first-rate, the dialogue is period correct and the series as a whole is the best set of wartime novels since those of the legendary Nevil Shute.”
BookPage, Starred Review

“Masterful . . . Benn combines the best elements of traditional small-town mysteries and WWII thrillers, developing a firm sense of place and never letting the suspense flag. This long-running series shows no signs of fatigue.”
Publishers Weekly, Starred Review

“This long-running series grows in breadth and depth with every installment.”
Kirkus Reviews

Praise for the Billy Boyle Mysteries

“Full of action, humor and heart.”
—Louise Penny

"This book has got it all—an instant classic."
—Lee Child

“Billy Boyle has been to some awesome places in James R. Benn’s adventurous World War II series . . . As historical detective series go, this one is extremely well tended by an author who clearly dotes on his hero. As do we.”
The New York Times

"Consistently entertaining."
WWII Magazine
“Fans of historical mysteries and World War II buffs will savor Evil for Evil . . . Rich in its exploration of Irish history and politics, this is also a character study of brash young man trying to balance personal, family, and political loyalties while staying true to himself.”
The Boston Globe
“James Benn has written a gripping and entertaining mystery (think early Ken Follett), but also—and perhaps just as importantly—he realistically and sensitively explores the rarely discussed race relations and power struggles in the U.S. Armed Forces in World War II Britain. A thrilling read.”
—Susan Elia MacNeal, author of His Majesty’s Hope and the Maggie Hope mystery series
“What a great read, full of action, humor and heart . . . Equal parts spy thriller, war story and murder mystery, with a dollop of romance that’s never sweet, this is just a terrific book. More please!”
—Louise Penny

“A harrowing adventure that delivers on suspense and, quite movingly, on emotional registers too.”
—Megan Abbott
“It is a pleasure marching off to war with the spirited Billy Boyle. He is a charmer, richly imagined and vividly rendered, and he tells a finely suspenseful yarn.”
—Dan Fesperman, author of Winter Work

“A triple dose of excitement with a murder mystery within a spy thriller within a World War Two adventure story. . . . A ‘rattling good read.’”
—Rhys Bowen

"Pervasive racism in the U.S. Army during WWII frames Benn’s excellent eighth Billy Boyle whodunit . . . The superior plot and thoughtful presentation of institutional racism directed against American soldiers about to risk their lives for their country make this one of Benn’s best." 
Publishers Weekly, Starred Review

“A smart, fast-paced, action-packed historical mystery series replete with liberal dashes of humor and romance providing broad appeal to readers of military history, thrillers and mysteries. He deftly combines a mélange of edge-of-your seat suspenseful situations with historical accuracy and engaging literary references.”

“The painstaking research is evident, the story crackles with life, and the overlay of fictional characters onto very real historical events is seamless.”

Product Details
ISBN: 9781641294157
ISBN-10: 1641294159
Publisher: Soho Crime
Publication Date: September 5th, 2023
Pages: 360
Language: English
Series: A Billy Boyle WWII Mystery