A section of the trail toward Col-de-Mantet (France) in May (copyright by Author)

Walking with Virginia Hall

In discovering and walking Virginia Hall’s trail through the Pyrenees, I imagined Virginia inching her way up steep, snow-covered slopes with her prosthetic left leg, “Cuthbert,” dragging behind her.

The Challenges She Faced

I thought of her other challenges: a guide, who was willing to leave her in the snow; the Gestapo, chasing her from behind, and the uncertainty of what lay ahead.

Then I understood what it took to make this climb, her immense mental strength, determination, and perseverance, and saw Virginia as she was, a remarkable, differently-abled woman.

Virginia Hall’s Trail (copyright by the author)

Hardships that Shaped Virginia’s Outlook

After days of hiking more than fifty miles in rugged, unforgiving terrain, Virginia crossed the border into Spain. Mentally and physically exhausted, she made her way to the train station, where she planned to take an early morning coach to Barcelona. No doubt, she was looking forward basking in the warm Mediterranean sun and tending to her prosthetic limb, “Cuthbert,” before meeting her British colleagues at the consulate.

But on arriving at the station Virginia made a mistake, unusual for a seasoned spy.  She arrived far too early–4:30 AM for the 5:15 AM train to Barcelona–and the police were waiting. Without an entrance stamp in her passport, the police knew Virginia crossed the border illegally.  Virginia was thrown into Spanish prison.

To see photos and learn more about Virginia’s life of espionage, click here: Virginia Hall blog.

“Hall of Mirrors” has been called:

“A fascinating, electric account of a heroic woman.”Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

“Riveting . . . A tremendous read!”Gen. David Petraeus (former CIA Director)

 “An extraordinary accomplishment . . . A stunner!”—Peter Earnest, Founding Exec. Director, International Spy Museum

“Enthralling!”Sarah Megan Thomas, Actress/Producer, “A Call to Spy.”

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