Undercover by Danielle Steel is a contemporary romantic thriller and I enjoyed it. The action moves from America to Argentina, Paris and London. It moves at quite a pace and the reader marvels at the locations – as diverse as the jungle and the White House.
Undercover tells the parallel stories of Marshall and Ariana. They live worlds apart but have similar experiences. They are both in the world but do not feel at home in the place they inhabit. “He felt like a stranger in his own country.” Both are seeking for a place to call home. “She was no longer sure where home was.” The novel explores this search to belong. “He felt like he had been sucked into a vacuum and was hanging in space between two worlds.”
There are also the twin themes of forgiveness and guilt. Circumstances arise and things happen for which both characters feel guilty. They each experience survivors guilt which only heightens their sense of isolation. “She needed to seek refuge and find forgiveness.” They each need to forgive themselves for something which was never their fault to begin with.
Both characters have loved and lost. Danielle Steel shows how grief can affect us all differently. Some need to withdraw. Some search for answers when there are none. Children are powerful aides on the road to recovery. There are some delightful scenes and exchanges in the novel involving small children. “A little girl in braids and sparkly pink shoes had touched his heart.”
Undercover is a fast paced thriller that will give the reader a roller coaster ride. It is the first novel that I have read by Danielle Steel in about twenty years. I certainly intend to haunt our local library for more.