You Read What? Book Review: Code Name Verity

Author: Elizabeth Wein

Publisher: Egmont Press

Date Published: February 6th 2012

Format: Hardcover

Source: Toronto Public Library

Synopsis:

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.

Number of Days It Took to Read: 6

Cover:

Code Name Verity

 

When people saw this cover, the first thing that came to their mind was “Is this a lesbian, fifty shades of grey type of book?”. That’s not the first thing that came to my mind and it surprised me that it did for them even though, after a second look, I kind of understand why they would. I liked this version of the cover. It reflects the book’s themes well.

The Writing Score:  4.5 out of 5

Recommendation: A Must Read

Memorable or Forgettable: Memorable

Rating:  4 out of 5

Review:

This book was such a refreshing read and I’m so happy to have read it.

I talk about this a lot but I get annoyed when young adult novels mostly seem to be about romance. There are varying degrees of emphasis on the subject of romance in the young adult genre but, let’s be honest, it’s the driving force of the story whether it’s contemporary, horror, dystopian etc. In Code Name Verity, romance is not the driving force (and I’d go as far as saying non-existant but that can be left up to debate). The emphasis is on the relationship between two female friends during WW2 and the strength of the friendship being tested.

Verity and Maddie are young women to be looked up to and are a couple of badasses in their own right. I’m limited in what I can say regarding the plot but it’s the type of plot that you underestimate halfway through only to have it dawn on you how unbelievably smart Wein is in her storytelling. I promise you that a second re-read would be in order  to clear up how you could possibly miss the not-so-obvious-at-the-time signs. The characters are rich in the depth, the description is vivid and the subtle humour gave it life.

I wasn’t stirred emotionally as I thought I was going to be but, damn, did I read a great tale.

Wein did a sensational job well done.

A. A. Omer

The opinions expressed here are mine and readers are welcome to disagree. In fact, I encourage it! I never believed in putting particular books or authors on some sort of universal pedestal but you’re free to put it on your individualized pedestal because I most certainly will.

One thought on “You Read What? Book Review: Code Name Verity

  1. LOVED this book. It was unique and beautiful and I loved that it didn’t fall into the trap of the common YA tropes. I would recommend it to everyone. Glad you enjoyed it!

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