Our January pick for the Portsmouth Book Club meetup is Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein. This novel has won thirteen prized literary awards in the young adult genre. Here is the description from GoodReads:
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.
Here are a number of reviews from different sources:
'It has been a while since I was so captivated by a character ... Code Name Verity is one of those rare things: an exciting - and affecting - female adventure story.' The Guardian '[a] tale of espionage, torture and female derring-do.' The Times
'It's a compelling, uncompromising read which makes few concessions to the age group it's written for - either in subject matter or narrative technique. The bits about flight and women in the war are well researched and the terrifying, but exciting, atmosphere is good.' The Independent
'This is a remarkable book, which had me horrified and totally gripped at the same time, and although it is billed as a Young Adult title, don't be put off - it is a very grown-up story.' The Daily Mail
'... a rare young adult novel entirely about female power and female friendship...' New York Times '[It] does more than stick with me. It haunts me. I just can't recommend it enough.' -- Maggie Stiefvater, bestselling author of Shiver
'This is a rich and rewarding adventure story with multi-layered heroines and complicated emotions. All 450 pages really do fly by. Expect to see Wein's name in the running for the Older Readers Category of the Scottish Children's Book Awards next year.' The Scotsman
'If you want an original read that will challenge your perceptions about truth, lies, bravery and deception, this is one for you.' Sugarscape
'... passionate writing with an utterly compelling story.' -- Manda Scot, Chair of the Historical Writers' Association
'... full of convincing detail, heart-stopping emotion and tension.' The Bookseller
Thank you to everyone who came out this evening to discuss Bad Monkey. Here is my review: Bad Monkey Book Review (please be advised that my book review column should be renamed the Drunken Book Review column - as I tend to imbibe while reviewing.)
Unfortunately, I was so excited that Code Name Verity was picked, I accidentally left the list of books we voted on at the table. So, no list this evening. If you care to add any of the books in the comments below, please do so!