cotton_peter4 Cotton_Peter1 cotton_peter_nv_r Cotton_Peter2 Cotton_Peter3
Full Name: Peter Cotton
Nationality: British
Organization: British Intelligence
Occupation Agent

Creator: Aly Monroe
Time Span: 2008 - 2014


Peter Cotton is an agent with British Intelligence.

The Second World War is nearing an end as the series opens though hostilities are still extremely high as one side senses victory and the other worries about its fate. A relatively young man, at least in years if not in experience, Cotton has been moved from the military, where he had held the rank of Captain in the British Army, to the Intelligence field. Further, he has been sent into the field where he must operate alone with only his wits to keep him alive.

Though Cotton is a British citizen, life in Europe is viewed from a different vantage point as he had been raised mostly in South America where his father had a job. As a result of his upbringing, he speaks Spanish like a native although it is far more gutteral dialect from the streets southern and western hemisphere than is spoken in Spain. His first solo assignment, chronicled in the first book, finds that out.

At 25 years old, Cotton is a bit shy at times, or at least that is how he appears. He is tall, standing 6'1", having fair hair and blue eyes. His relative youth, when posed against people considerably older and more experienced, makes him look naive and untested. His years in combat before he came to the Intelligence field, though, show a different story.

Cotton is single but bears the scars of an engagement that ended with the death of his fiancee in an air raid earlier in the war. While he appreciates the beauty of ladies he meets, he still remembers what he lost. He is respectful to ladies and does not press his attentions but he is not a shrinking violet and he is not at all shy.

As the series progresses, so does the learning by Cotton. His rank in the military he is only nominally a part of increases and his responsibilities in the Intelligence community grows as well.

The series takes place during the last days of WWII and the period after the global conflict, though it is written very recently. The author has managed to capture a great deal of the atmosphere from that period and even has the feel and vibe of a series actually penned back then. There is action but it is often subdued, not exploitative. There is far more mystery and day-to-day life in these pages than bouts of explosion and mayhem. The mayhem does go on, however, and it jumps up to bite you just when you think the case is winding down.


Number of Books:4
First Appearance:2008
Last Appearance:2014

1 The Maze Of Cadiz The Maze Of Cadiz
Written by Aly Monroe
Copyright: 2008

In 1944 new agent Peter Cotton is sent to southern Spain on what he thinks is a simple assignment but finding his contact murdered right after he arrives lets him know nothing in spy-filled Spain is simple.

2 Washington Shadow Washington Shadow
Written by Aly Monroe
Copyright: 2009

With WWII just over, in the early autumn of 1945 Peter Cotton is sent to the States to check on the changing Intelligence services but finds a conspiracy that could change the world.

3 Icelight Icelight
Written by Aly Monroe
Copyright: 2011

The year is 1947 and Peter Cotton is given several tasks including protecting a nuclear scientist from attacks due to his homosexuality. As he does so, he has to contend with MI5 fighting itself and MI6 full of traitors.
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4 Black Bear Black Bear
Written by Aly Monroe
Copyright: 2014

In New York to assist in creating an intelligence branch of the new United Nations, Peter Cotton wakes up in a private hospital where he is told he recovering from an attack consisting of several truth-inducing drugs. Still suffering from their debilitating effects, he seeks who did it, why they did it, and why is he still alive.
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Number of Stories:1
First Appearance:2013
Last Appearance:2013

1 Redeemable Redeemable
Written by Aly Monroe
Copyright: 2013

In July, 1945, Peter Cotton is pulled from Spain to Germany to help investigate the growing black market there, an illegal trade that many British soldiers are taking part in. The question facing him is how how up the chain of command the activity goes.


As I consumed the pages of this series, and continued to enjoy them, I realized that the comments about there being a feeling like they were written back in the late 40's held true and it is a wonderful change of pace from the modern style of global doom and gloom with the fate of everyone hanging on the actions of one incredible hero. I enjoy those types of books a great deal but to get something with the quality that Ms. Monroe brings to this series, with its concentration of letting the reader experience the setting and the times, is wonderful.

One pitfall that Ms. Monroe does NOT succomb to that many other writers of "historical" fiction often do is to make the characters far smarter and prescient about future events than anyone likely ever would be. In this regard she is in the same wonderful league as fellow WWII-period modern day writer, Alan Furst. They both avoid this atmosphere-destroyer by making the character intelligent and occasionally fallible but mostly just people who live in the now. And when you are reading a suspense-filled novel, you want the character worried about surviving today, not concerned with twenty years from now. Ms. Monroe achieves this.

And gives a few darned good tales while doing so.


My Grade: A


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