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The Compulsive Reader: Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein

Monday, June 25, 2012

Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein

When she's caught by the Nazis in Occupied France, Scottish agent Verity knows that she is as good as dead. The only weapons she now possesses are her wits and select bits of information that the Nazis desperately want. In order to buy herself time, she makes a deal with the Germans: they give her some time, and she'll tell them everything. But Verity's confession is not what they expected. She begins not with herself, but with Maddie, her best friend and the pilot of the plane that brought her to France. And the result is not so much a confession, but a glimpse into the friendship between two strong and courageous girls in the face of evil, and how much each of them are willing to sacrifice for their country, beliefs, and each other.

Code Name Verity is a tremendous and moving novel about friendship, sacrifice, and love. The first half is told from Verity's perspective; as a narrator, she is engaging and strong, even as she reveals her weaknesses and fears. Her spirited, bright nature conceals the less evident fact that she is a very unreliable narrator. From the very beginning Verity is up to something in how she constructs her confession, centering it on her best friend, but her intentions and motives aren't clear. Readers don't see just how creative, resilient, and brilliant she is until the second half of the novel, told from Maddie's perspective. Between the two young women, Wein presents a vibrant and oftentimes tragic account of what World War II was like for countless of young people, how it changed them, how it forced them to re-evaluate their fears, and what those experiences demanded of them. As the story unfolds, not every situation is black and white, not every character is either good or evil, and truth becomes a slippery thing. This meticulously written and emotionally charged novel demands your complete attention until the shocking end and won't be easily forgotten.

Cover Comments: I like all of the elements of this cover! It's striking, dark, and a bit mysterious. Perfect for this book.

Review copy purchased.

9 comments:

Nicole said...

I can't decide if this is really as good as everybody is making it out to be. I suppose I should read it and find out...

The Compulsive Reader said...

Oh, it is. Trust me!

nerdybookreviews said...

I'm reading this now, I'm finding it really good. Glad you enjoyed it so much. I think it's a really emotional and raw book.

Caroline Starr Rose said...

A gal who works at my local indie just gushed about this one. If that's not praise, I don't know what is!

Charlotte (The Book on the Hill) said...

This book sounds good! I'd seen it around but hadn't read any reviews yet. :)

So thanks for your lovely review!

Andrea @ Cozy Up said...

I really loved this book, I wasn't sure I would, but the narration was amazing. I had trouble at first with Verity but I did end up falling in love with it. Great review

Liviania said...

Yet another good review for this one.

Bookworm1858 said...

Great review! I loved this one so much but had trouble writing a review beyond "go read it!" It's just that good!

marybelle said...

I've already got CODE NAME VERITY on my wish list. It does look like an amazing read. Thank you for your review.