The true story of an audacious resistance campaign undertaken by an unlikely pair: two French women--Lucy Schwob and Suzanne Malherbe --who drew on their skills as Parisian avant-garde artists to write and distribute wicked insults against Hitler and calls to desert, a PSYOPs tactic known as 'paper bullets,' designed to demoralize Nazi troops occupying their adopted home of Jersey in the British Channel Islands.
... a captivating tale of queer love and resistance during World War II ... Jackson’s research is impeccable and his writing is lively. Even though this is a Holocaust biography, the trajectory of the women’s lives, and their artistic symbiosis, make for fascinating reading. The book’s clean, crisp language incorporates needed historical context well ... Full of struggles, triumphs, and intimate knowledge of a complex relationship, Paper Bullets is a gem of a historical text about two women who stood up to power defiantly, living on their own terms.
As Jackson expertly describes, Cahun and Moore may have seemed unlikely candidates for the resistance ... Jackson does an excellent job in piecing together their story to depict the deprivations of their time in jail. The book’s interrogation scenes are surprisingly flat, but the drama leading up to them is intense, as are scenes after which they are sentenced to death ... As this skillfully constructed book shows, art may not end a war or pandemic, but it can provide receptive audiences with needed clarity.
... fascinating ... [Jackson] is adept at bringing the vibrancy of 1920s and 1930s Paris to life, including the cafes, nightclubs and personalities that were part of the thriving gay and lesbian community to which Lucy and Suzanne belonged ... This carefully researched volume also includes fascinating photographs, artwork and excerpts from the women’s letters and articles. The author’s attention to detail and prodigious research skills are also on display as he recounts the saga of the German occupation of Jersey and the women’s growing determination to do something to resist ... Impeccably researched and meticulously sourced, Paper Bullets is a welcome and timely portrait of courage and creativity.