Secrets of Malta

An escapist historical novel of women, spies and a world at war

Malta, 1943.

The war in the air above Malta is over, but the battle for Europe is about to begin. Margarita, a young singer in a Valletta nightclub, has not seen her former lover Henry Dunn since breaking off their affair. His wife Vera, an enigmatic archaeologist, arrives at the club to tell her that Henry has disappeared, presumed dead.

While investigating, Margarita stumbles upon the hunt for a notorious and dangerous Nero. As an unlikely bond develops between the two women, and strange secrets emerge, an urgent quest to unmask Nero starts – before he can enact a deadly plan that may threaten the course of the war.

Cecily Blench is a freelance writer and editor with a particular interest in travel writing, wartime history, intrepid women and Southeast Asia. She grew up in Herefordshire, attended the University of York, and now lives in London. She has written for a number of publications including Reader’s Digest, Slightly Foxed, The London Magazine, and Hinterland. Her first novel won the 2019 Wilbur Smith Adventure Writing Prize and is under contract with Bonnier Zaffre.

Her first novel, The Long Journey Home, is a historical adventure set in Burma during the Second World War and will be published by Bonnier Books in June 2021. Her new novel, a WW2 espionage thriller, is being published by Bonnier Books in 2024.