Tag Archives: historical fiction

Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein

My RSS feed is full of great book blog posts. I find these posts are a excellent way to discover new reads and authors. When something catches my eye, I add it to my “to-read” list. The next time I unexpectedly find myself with nothing new to read, I’ll check one of these blog discoveries. Last week I saw a book on Steph Su ReadsCode Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein–that I knew I needed to read right away.

From Goodreads.com

I have two weeks. You’ll shoot me at the end no matter what I do.

That’s what you do to enemy agents. It’s what we do to enemy agents. But I look at all the dark and twisted roads ahead and cooperation is the easy way out. Possibly the only way out for a girl caught red-handed doing dirty work like mine — and I will do anything, anything, to avoid SS-Hauptsturmführer von Linden interrogating me again.

He has said that I can have as much paper as I need. All I have to do is cough up everything I can remember about the British War Effort. And I’m going to. But the story of how I came to be here starts with my friend Maddie. She is the pilot who flew me into France — an Allied Invasion of Two.

We are a sensational team.

I have been in a reading rut recently. Most of the books I have picked up have been dystopian trilogies or tales of how the girl gets the boy. I enjoyed these stories but sometimes just need something different. Code Name Verity was the perfect change. Instead of the typical love story–or more common love triangle–this book told of the adventures and friendship between two woman during WWII.

I will admit that it took me a while to get use to the narration style. Once I did I was hooked. I stayed up reading this book way past my bedtime just to know how the book ended. The fact that the plot was so different meant that it was unpredictable. It was impossible to guess what would come next. Sentences that were throwaway lines at first became huge plot points later. I wished that I had purchased a physical copy of this book instead of the E-Reader version so I could have flipped back and forth between the pages. I finished the book knowing that a re-read was in order in an attempt to catch all the small details I missed initially.

The characters of the story were also a refreshing change. It seems common these days to have a protagonist who has a special ability. Generally this skill is something they are born with, or happen to realize they have right in time for a crucial plot point. It is nice to see that this is not the case for the women in this book. You see the hard work and training that it takes for them to get to where they are. Their skill is not something they happen upon by luck or chance. This made the characters believable. It added a certain realism that enabled me to imagine the protagonists on their journey as the story unfolded.

Review: This book is wonderful. It is a refreshing change from the pile of dystopian love triangles on the shelves. Despite its YA categorization, I really believe this book will appeal to anyone who enjoys a good story. The fast pace and unique characters made it impossible to put down. I highly recommend this story.

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