Monday, 23 July 2012

Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein

Code Name VerityCode Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein

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Source: Bookurious Blog It Forward program!
Publisher: Doubleday Canada, Hyperion (US)
Format: Hardcover, 339 pages
Release Date: May 15, 2012

Two young women from totally different backgrounds are thrown together during World War II: one a working-class girl from Manchester, the other a Scottish aristocrat, one a pilot, the other a wireless operator. Yet whenever their paths cross, they complement each other perfectly and before long become devoted friends.
But then a vital mission goes wrong, and one of the friends has to bail out of a faulty plane over France. She is captured by the Gestapo and becomes a prisoner of war. The story begins in “Verity’s” own words, as she writes her account for her captors.

Code Name Verity is a beautiful, beautiful story.

Captured by the Gestapo and held for information, "Verity" begins the long task of writing out the story of Maddie, a female pilot in the war, in exchange for a bit of extra time before her inevitable death. It sounds morbid. It is.

But also in this novel is friendship and bravery, loyalty and strength. It's the historic tale (although "Verity's" story is fictional) of what people are forced to do in times of war and of how far people will go for what they believe in. Reading this novel was like being pulled through a blender in the best possible way. My emotions were are in tatters and I felt so connected to everything that was happening. For the few days that it took me to read this book, I was there in WWII. I felt so utterly immersed in the Nazi prison and all of the other locations constantly shadowed by the war. This book will transport you to times past -- with emotions and feelings and history -- and it is an amazing thing.

I will say though that this novel was not an easy one for me to get into. I really struggled at the beginning (before getting completely hooked!) with all of the nitty gritty, technical details of aircrafts and flight manoeuvres and war operations. If you find yourself feeling it too, I really hope that you'll power through! The book picked up insanely for me as I got further into it.

"Verity" is such a complex narrator. She is not entirely reliable which adds a nice bit of suspense (ha, as if there wasn't enough) to the book and even as she is confessing everything she knows and therefore betraying her country, she still has these small moments of rebellion and humour and just life.

I did not see the twists in this novel coming at all and each one was equivalent to a train knocking me flat. I so cried while reading Code Name Verity and I felt emotionally drained at the end of it but I would do it all again in a heartbeat.

Cover Comments: Simple and striking with actual significance to the story -- more so, in my opinion, for the feel of it than the actual event.

4.5/5 because of the beginning!

Changed rating to 5 stars (Sept. 18) because if I can get the urge to yell out "KISS ME, HARDY!" and sob months later... that's sure as hell worthy of all the stars.


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  2. I can't heard too much about this book, but it does sound great! Nice review!

  3. Awesome review! This book sounds so emotional and engaging. The historic setting and the heroine's unique personality both sound so engaging. I am glad to hear you enjoyed the novel!!! Thanks for sharing. I haven't heard much about it and although it was difficult for you to get into it it sounds like it is worth the read!

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  5. I've been hearing a lot of good things about this book! It definitely sounds like an emotional roller-coaster, and Verity (or "Verity" as I assume there is something else going on :P) sounds like an interesting narrator! Great review, Sonia! :)

  6. AMAZING review, Sonia! Seriously, I heart it so much. That's exactly how I felt while reading Code Name Verity- involved, there with Verity and I sobbed like a baby towards the end. Totally agree about the cover too! It haunts me!

  7. Great review!! This book sounds awesome!!