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Noor-un-nisa Inayat Khan: Madeleine Hardcover – May 1, 1972


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 280 pages
  • Publisher: Littlehampton Book Services Ltd; New edition edition (May 1972)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0214653056
  • ISBN-13: 978-0214653056
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,853,749 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Cooley peninsula on November 28, 2011
Format: Hardcover
In the forward to this 1971 edition, the author mentions the difficulty she had getting a publisher in the 1950s because of the space she gave to Inayat Khan's family background. It became a bestseller nonetheless. This edition has the same divided character and I found myself skimming the early chapters covering her Indian background and family history.

However, about half way through this becomes a real page-turner. It's a rivetting story of what 'Nora Baker' (or 'Madeleine') experienced after being flown into occupied France as a radio operator. Shortly after she landed the Germans made a mass arrest and Madeleine became the only radio operator left. She was diligent in her duties but seemed to take enormous risks. For instance, she carried her radio everywhere and also a notebook with all her decyphered messages. She struck other members of her network as a naive person, yet she lasted four months before she was betrayed.

The author was a friend of Khan's and captures much of the human side of her life through interviews with many people in France who worked with her and met her, even her German captors. It's a very exciting read. On one occasion a network member is suspected of being turned and makes a rendez-vous with Madeleine. A friend drives by and notices six tall men in raincoats positioned around the waiting member. Madeleine also watches from a distance and sees the same. There's a real sense of immediacy and danger in the story.

This is a very good read after the opening chapters. It follows her fate to Dachau where she was shot in November 1943.
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