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(Mal Peet)

A story of betrayal and espionage and the costs of war are the ingredients in ?Tamar?, an exciting novel by Mal Peet.   Two British young men toward the close of WWII have been sent by the SOE to Holland to try to get the various resistance groups operating there to work as one unit, instead of separately as they have been.  Code named Tamar and Dart, the men parachute in under cover of night. Tamar has been in this region before, and is happily welcomed back to the Maarten?s farm, especially by the Maarten?s granddaughter Marijke. These two rekindle their romance. Dart, meanwhile, is sent to an insane asylum pretending to be a doctor. In reality, he is the radio operator for the group. Dart is able to survey what is occurring in the nearby town, pretending to treat Bibi, the wife of a marionette shop owner where his radio operation is set up.   Eventually Dart meets Marijke, falling in love with her at first sight. He does not realize Marijke and Tamar already have a relationship. When he learns of the romance, he feels betrayed that Tamar never told him about the relationship. His anger slowly begins to grow, helped along by the drugs he takes which allow him say awake and alert.   The chapters telling Tamar and Dart?s story are interspersed with the story of the girl whose grandfather is responsible for naming her Tamar. Tamar?s father, Jan, and mother, Sonia, agreed to the name. They have no idea why the grandfather suggested it. When Tamar?s father disappears and Sonia begins a new romance and working full time, Tamar begins spending time at her grandparent?s house almost exclusively. When her Grandfather commits suicide, he leaves Tamar a box. After years, Tamar opens the box to reveal money, maps, and identification card amid other items. The maps are of the river Tamar in Holland. Tamar enlists the aid of Yoyo, a family friend, to help her figure out the puzzle of the box contents.   Meanwhile, in Holland in 1945, Dart is compelled by some Nazi guards to give minor treatment to a higher Nazi official. Dart plays the doctor role perfectly, which helps him survive a later Nazi raid on the mannequin shop. With the drug taking a bigger and bigger hold over Dart?s mind, he hatches a plan to get rid of Tamar (the SOE agent) and escape with Marijke.   Jan has already begun his own search for the truth in modern day Holland. The betrayal he learns will leave a uneaserable mark on him and his daughter, Tamar.

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