Book Talk #5
Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein
“I wanted to be heroic and I pretended I was.” This is the powerful first line.
If you are one that enjoys a little historical fiction, this is the book for you! I love reading books about the wars for some reason so when I saw this book at our recent Scholastic book fair, I couldn’t hardly wait for my library to get it checked in so I could read it! It has been on my list of must reads since February. The writing style of Wein is so captivating, I think that was my favorite aspect of this book. I was able to feel all of the emotions that the characters were encountering.
So this book takes place on October 11, 1943 with two young ladies who crash land in France, Nazi-occupied France. Queenie (the main character) and her pilot friend Maddie crash and the Gestapo come seize Queenie while Maddie is left in the wreckage. Queenie is very knowledgeable and is seen as a spy. She is captured and tortured by interrogators as they are trying to get secret information out of her. They say they will spare her life if she writes daily about the information she knows, otherwise she will be tortured to death.
Queenie is forced to write on any paper available and give information as she is being held at the Chateau de Bordeaux…but she gets wrapped up in the story of her friendship with Maddie; which helps her escape the reality around her that everyone is being tortured and starved. Queenie persists and knows that she is being a traitor but it is the only way to survive.
I don’t want to spoil this one too much because there is so much that goes on that leads up to the ending (which you may need your tissues then) but the strength and persistence of Queenie to put up with the constant interrogation, torture, and starvation is a true testament to the writing style of Wein as she depicts the story so well.