Thursday, June 21, 2012

Book Review: Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein

I am not head over heels in love with historical fiction as a general rule, but I love Elizabeth Wein's Mark of Solomon series, set in sixth-century Ethiopia, and when I saw that she had a book set in WWII Europe coming out, I knew it would be good.  And indeed it was.  It was excellent.  It was the best historical fiction I've read in a long time, the best friendship story, the best adventure story, the best short, the best book I've read in a long time, period. 

Here's the publisher's description:

Oct. 11th, 1943—A British spy plane crashes in Nazi-occupied France. Its pilot and passenger are best friends. One of the girls has a chance at survival. The other has lost the game before it's barely begun.

When “Verity” is arrested by the Gestapo, she's sure she doesn’t stand a chance. As a secret agent captured in enemy territory, she’s living a spy’s worst nightmare. Her Nazi interrogators give her a simple choice: reveal her mission or face a grisly execution.

As she intricately weaves her confession, Verity uncovers her past, how she became friends with the pilot Maddie, and why she left Maddie in the wrecked fuselage of their plane. On each new scrap of paper, Verity battles for her life, confronting her views on courage and failure and her desperate hope to make it home. But will trading her secrets be enough to save her from the enemy?
If that doesn't make you want to go immediately to your local library and track Code Name Verity down, I don't know what's wrong with you.


  1. I have to admit that I struggled with Code Name Verity at first; it was a slow read for me, one that I found difficult to get into but one that with an ending so powerful and unforgettable that it redeemed itself and made my experience completely turnaround!

    Although this story is set in World War II, it's really a story about two girls who become best friends and what was most likely the period in their life that had the great impact on them. It's also written in journal format, which is something I've mentioned before that I never seem to take to well as a reader. But the story itself is a beautiful tale that leaves a mark on your heart.

  2. i love reading your book reviews! i am going to check out the "Mark of Solomon' series. how have i missed it?

    wish we lived closer esp. now that we have little boys close that are the same age!