Review: ‘Conspiracy of Blood and Smoke’ by Anne Blankman

I received this book for free from Edelweiss, requested from publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: ‘Conspiracy of Blood and Smoke’ by Anne BlankmanConspiracy of Blood and Smoke by Anne Blankman
Series: Prisoner of Night and Fog #2
Published by Balzer + Bray on April 21st, 2015
Genres: Historical, Love & Romance, Young Adult
Pages: 416
Format: eARC
Source: Edelweiss, requested from publisher
The girl known as Gretchen Whitestone has a secret: She used to be part of Adolf Hitler’s inner circle. More than a year after she made an enemy of her old family friend and fled Munich, she lives with a kindly English family, posing as an ordinary German immigrant, and is preparing to graduate from high school. Her love, Daniel Cohen, is a reporter in town. For the first time in her life, Gretchen is content.

But then, Daniel gets a telegram that sends him back to Germany, and Gretchen’s world turns upside-down. And when she receives word that Daniel is wanted for murder, she has to face the danger she thought she’d escaped-and return to her homeland.

Gretchen must do everything she can to avoid capture and recognition, even though saving Daniel will mean consorting with her former friends, the Nazi elite. And as they work to clear Daniel’s name, Gretchen and Daniel discover a deadly conspiracy stretching from the slums of Berlin to the Reichstag itself. Can they dig up the explosive truth and get out in time-or will Hitler discover them first?

About Anne Blankman

Anne Blankman may have been meant to be a writer because her parents named her for Anne of Green Gables. She grew up in an old house with gables (gray, unfortunately) in upstate New York. When she wasn't writing or reading, she was rowing on the crew team, taking ballet lessons, fencing and swimming. She graduated from Union College with degrees in English and history, which comes in handy when she writes historical fiction.

After earning a master's degree in information science, Anne began working as a youth services librarian. Currently, she lives in southeastern Virginia with her family. When she's not writing young adult fiction, she's playing with her daughter, training for races with her husband, working at her amazing library branch, learning to knit (badly), and reading.

Anne Blankman is the author of PRISONER OF NIGHT AND FOG, the first in a three-book deal slated for publication in spring 2014 from Balzer + Bray | HarperCollins. She is represented by Tracey Adams of Adams Literary.

The Book DepositoryChapters/IndigoGood Reads


I was perusing Edelweiss for some book covers when I decided to checkout the review copies. HarperTeen always has e-ARCs for review and I always want each and every one of them but when I saw this book there, I knew I had to read it already.

This book.. It had my heart pumping and my forehead sweating. I felt all the feels and was also freaked out all at the same time. Being on the run from Hitler will have you paranoid. When your country is turning into something no one can recognize, and you have to look over your shoulder the entire time.. This is what Gretchen was going through, through her eyes we experience the terror and the immediate pressure to topple the Nazi regime. We all know how it ends in real life, but in this fictional world, I kind of wanted a different ending.

Gretchen and Daniel are just so sweet to one another and I dare say they are both loving and very mature and considerate of each other’s feelings. Being in that world and what they had to go through, I love that it drove them to take action and to do something even if it meant their own lives were at risk. Very brave.

The writing is still as wonderfully written in the sequel as it is here. You immerse yourself in her words and her life and forget everything else. That’s what Blankman does well. And her research is just as strong here too. I wanted a twist ending but I knew I was just being hopeful.

Grab this one if you’re looking for an intense nail-biting read set on WW2.

reading progress



Silence means someone’s waiting to hurt you.
He knew what reaction he wanted from his followers and how to provoke it. There was very little he did that was unrehearsed.
You deserve a man who’s proud to be with you, not a man who hides you away.
We are each our own person, separate from our family, not wholly formed by our experiences. We decide who we want to be.
I choose you, Gretchen. Every time, I’ll choose you.
What Hitler had always promised—the Party and Germany were becoming one. The union that she had once thought sounded so perfect. Now it terrified her.
It’s such a slippery slope. You begin with one little lie, and the next one gets bigger and easier, and then the next, until you don’t even know anymore what’s real and false.
I cannot give you forever.
I wish I’d never met you.





  1. Bookish Glamma

    May 3, 2015 at 3:17 PM

    Great review. This sounds like a book that I would like. I haven’t been to EW in a long while, but should. They have some great offerings. Is this one of those books that I have to read the first in series before reading this one?
    Bookish Glamma recently posted…Review: Untraceable by S.R. JohannesMy Profile

    • giselle

      May 6, 2015 at 1:34 PM

      Oh you’re lucky you haven’t been on EW in a while. I’m such a sucker her for their e-ARCs.

      Yes you’ll have to read the first one to understand the second because there are events that needs to happen first

  2. Carina Olsen

    April 21, 2015 at 3:56 PM

    Gorgeous review Giselle. <3 But aw. Everyone is loving this book 🙁 And I hated it, lol. But still. I'm glad you liked it 😀 Sort of, hah. Your review is awesome, either way. <3
    Carina Olsen recently posted…Cress Tuesday #78My Profile

    • giselle

      April 23, 2015 at 2:31 PM

      That’s okay Carina! I really like history and her writing is just great

  3. Kelsey

    April 20, 2015 at 10:54 AM

    I read and loved the first one. I grabbed this from Edelweiss too but I just never got around to reading it, but I hope to soon. I’m so glad you liked it though! 🙂
    Kelsey recently posted…The Sunday Post #8My Profile

    • giselle

      April 20, 2015 at 11:28 AM

      Yes me too! Had to get it off EW after reading the first one, hope you like Kelsey

  4. Daniela

    April 20, 2015 at 10:25 AM

    Giselle, I absolutely love your reviews! The author profile, quotes the progress report all so good! Im adding this book to my tbr list 🙂
    Daniela recently posted…Where on Earth? [1]My Profile

    • giselle

      April 20, 2015 at 11:27 AM

      Aww thanks so much Daniela! I’m glad you’re going to, it’s such an interesting and thought provoking issue

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