The Doktor's Daughter - Book Review

The Doktor's Daughter

Author: Nancy McDonald
Genre: Young Adult - General
Publisher: Iguana Books
Date Published: 00 , 0000
ISBN-10: 1771805757
ISBN-13: 9781771805759

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Book Review of :  The Doktor's Daughter


Nancy McDonald, author of The Doktor’s Daughter, is a Canadian freelance writer in several genres. This historical novel is a prequel to the "Girl on the Run." Her research into Hitler’s secret Weapons led to this engaging novel. However, this is more than a coming-of-age story of seventeen-year-old Amelie in pre-WWII Berlin, Germany.  

Amelie and her younger sister, Gigi, have been living in Paris with their aunt since the traumatic death of their mother and their father’s remarriage to Eva. Amelie is anxiously awaiting an acceptance letter from an art school, but instead, she is shocked by a brief telegram informing her of her father’s unexpected death. Amelie, her sister, and her aunt travel to Berlin for the reading of her father’s will and his funeral. From the tragedy of being an orphan with no chance to reconnect with her beloved father, she now must face their cold, heartless stepmother. 

A seemingly chance meeting with an acquaintance of her father after the funeral adds suspense. Anthony knows Amelie’s secret heritage and convinces her that his relationship with her father was genuine. Her father had been a well-loved biology professor. 

Amelie learns her father was a spy for Britain, with some very important connections and information that was lost with his death. Anthony convinces her that she must try to complete her father’s mission. However, the police have ruled her father’s death was an accident with no witnesses, therefore, there is no investigation. She suspects a coverup. Was her father killed? Amelie becomes aware of the political control Hitler’s regime has taken when local police and the Gestapo confront her for no apparent reason. Is she under surveillance?    

Amelie is quick-witted and brave in her search for her father’s killer. Her doubts and fears are realistic. She learns to trust only her contact, Anthony. As a spy, she learns to be observant and not draw attention to herself. She should stick to the truth when questioned but don’t offer information, 

She is brave and fearless, planning to be smuggled out of Germany and into France using the World’s Fair in Paris as a cover. 

Exciting and fast-paced, the young adult book looks into pre-WWII Germany as Hitler begins to take over. Amelie faces Hitler’s brutality and brainwashing techniques by observing her young cousin’s indoctrination into the Jungvolk (young people). She learns of the Bride’s School from a friend.  

The Doktor’s Daughter is a beautifully crafted novel that explores a range of themes. The poignant story revolves around a young girl during the events leading up to World War II. It delves into issues of self-discovery, familial loyalties, the transformative power of love, and the diverse facets of courage. This heartfelt and inspiring tale is earned through nuanced storytelling.  It provides important early 20th-century history, as do the author’s other excellent novels.  

Reviewed by: carole

About Nancy McDonald


Nancy McDonald began her career as a journalist working on Canadian television programmes, which include W5, Canada AM and Marketplace before going on to become a sought-after freelance writer, penning everything from documentaries to live-action scripts to comic books. Nancy lives in Stratford, Ontario where she revels in Shakespeare, takes theatregoers on tours of the Costume Warehouse, and treads the boards with the Perth County Players. She also works part time at Fanfare Books, Stratford's only independent bookseller. Visit her at

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