'The Secrets We Kept' Tells a Story of Spies, Secretaries and Classic Literature

"The Secrets We Kept" by Lara Prescott
Lara Prescott's debut novel focuses on spy craft at the beginning of the Cold War.

In 1942, the United States created the Office of Strategic Services. It centralized spy craft and espionage throughout World War II. At the end of the war, and the beginning of the Cold War, members of the OSS returned to Washington. There male spies continued to work while female spies were retired, or sent to the secretarial pool. These secretaries are at the heart of Lara Prescott’s debut novel The Secrets We Kept. The Ivy League men in charge of the burgeoning CIA believe that literature will win the hearts and minds of the Russian people. They plot to get Boris Pasternak’s banned novel, Dr. Zhivago, into the hands of ordinary Soviet citizens. Pasternak’s mistress Olga Ivinskaya and the women in the secretarial pool alternately narrate this riveting tale of suspense. Readers will want to plan an October getaway to read both books.

Maureen Millea Smith is a librarian at the Edina Library and Minnesota Book Award-winning novelist