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Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein
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Code Name Verity (edition 2012)

by Elizabeth Wein (Author)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
1,8622023,713 (4.35)248
Member:MaowangVater
Title:Code Name Verity
Authors:Elizabeth Wein (Author)
Info:Hyperion Book CH (2012), Edition: First Edition, Hardcover, 352 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:*****
Tags:Female friendship, Fiction, France, History, German occupation, 1940-1945, Germany. Geheime Staatspolizei, Great Britain, 1936-1945, Spy stories, Women air pilots, World War, Aerial operations, British, Prisoners and prisons, German, Underground movements

Work details

Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein

  1. 30
    Tamar: A Novel of Espionage, Passion, and Betrayal by Mal Peet (faither)
  2. 20
    Firebirds Soaring: An Anthology of Original Speculative Fiction by Sharyn November (Herenya)
    Herenya: Firebirds Soaring contains "Something Worth Doing" (by Wein) about Theo, a pilot and minor character from Code Name Verity.
  3. 20
    Flygirl by Sherri L. Smith (rarm)
    rarm: Set on opposite sides of the pond, but both are about wartime aviatrices and wonderfully depict female friendship.
  4. 31
    Life After Life by Kate Atkinson (amysisson)
    amysisson: Both are about the unusual ways in which women may impact the tides of war
  5. 00
    How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff (amysisson)
    amysisson: Young adults struggling to survive in war-torn England -- although different wars (one real, one fictional) in different times! These books are different, yet I really feel that if you love one, you'll love the other.
  6. 00
    A Brief History of Montmaray by Michelle Cooper (calmclam)
    calmclam: Both focus on girls in/around England adapting to the changing circumstances of World War II via their journals.
  7. 00
    Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson (BookshelfMonstrosity)
  8. 01
    Violins of Autumn by Amy McAuley (saraOm7)
    saraOm7: These are both about teenage girls working as spies in France during WWII, though one has a much happier ending than the other.
  9. 01
    The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas by John Boyne (keeneam)
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» See also 248 mentions

English (199)  German (1)  All languages (200)
Showing 1-5 of 199 (next | show all)
This is the second World War II book I've read in the past week, the first being The Book Thief. I hesitate to compare the two- the subject matter is not that similar, except the setting- but I found Code Name Verity much more well done.

The capacity of humans to be so cruel to fellow humans always astounds me. In the past, in the present, and, I'm sure, in the future, there are and will be stories which will stretch my ability to comprehend how somebody could behave towards another person, or group of people. One of the most compelling facets of Code Name Verity is that while the story itself is fiction, you know (because we all know what a tragedy and horror World War II was), you just know that something like it could have happened.

And in the face of that tragedy, you also see examples of amazing bravery and resistance to the evil. And again, while it is fiction, you know that there were brave, everyday people such as ourselves, who acted out in a variety of ways to defy the Nazis. Books with stories such as these always make me turn a mirror back on myself and I wonder if I could ever be as courageous. This, in my opinion, is what makes a good story a great book.

Code Name Verity had parts where I laughed out loud, where I was scared, where I was astonished, and where I was sad. If you're looking for a light and fluffy book, this is not going to be what you want. But if you're looking for something that will make you think, this is it. I'm of the school of thought that we should never, ever forget the atrocities of our collective human history, lest we repeat them. And if stories such as these make them more real to people, make them contemplate the fact that awful things happened to good people, then it is worth the read. ( )
  kateminasian | Nov 22, 2014 |
I'll admit it - when I first started this book, I detested the main character so, so much that I just wanted to put it down and walk far, far away without looking back. But as I am reading it for the Carnegie 2013, and I didn't want another repeat of Revolver 2010 (oh god) I forced myself to the second half of the book.
And I am so glad that I did.
I enjoyed seeing the events from a different perspective, i.e. that of Maddie, Verity's best friend, and I must admit that I did quite like the mystery surrounding the main character's real name, which, in the second half of the book, we FINALLY discover to be Julie. The ending of the book almost made me cry, and I can't even imagine what Maddie must have been feeling at that point.
And then she read Julie's written story.
I was so happy to discover that Julie had written a novel of lies! I suspected it from the moment that it was mentioned 11 wireless radios were placed in the plane wreck (as Julie had given away 11 pieces of code) but I was uncertain until the very end of the book, which gave a satisfying sense of finality and closure to the book.
I think it comes above Wonder, too. ( )
  ellsie98 | Nov 16, 2014 |
Lovely book. Terribly sad at some points. This is the story of a special operations executive and her best friend, a pilot, during WWII. Julie, the SOE, gets captured by German forces who begin to torture her for allied information. Her best friend, Maddie, a pilot is stuck in German held France. The novel depicts both girls' lives before the war up until the present. The writing is captivating and the book is chock full of relevant details and information. I felt as though I were there with the girls. Worth it. ( )
  Rosenstern | Oct 25, 2014 |
(115)
  activelearning | Oct 21, 2014 |
I really enjoyed this book. This was definitely a girl-power story. Although, it was girl-power in a way that has depth, women doing what has to be done rather than just "I told my man to get lost..." stuff. I mean, there was a bit of that - but it wasn't the crux of the story. And, it wasn't girls competing with each other, they were working together. My favorite quote from the book reflects that - "It's like being in love, discovering your best friend."

It was accurate for the time period. I did some fact checking and was happily surprised by the interesting tid-bits mentioned. Another great line was, "Our reconnaissance planes are tarted up in a lovely salmony-mauve camouflage to match the clouds." So I googled "pink spitfire" and just thought that was the coolest thing ever, both the pink spy plane and the way the author described it.

The best thing about this book is that it was not superficial like some other YA works. There was emphasis placed on Julie's beauty, but more emphasis on her intelligence, goodness and bravery. Those were really the most important character traits of all of the females mentioned in this novel. ( )
  kbarber | Oct 10, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 199 (next | show all)
If you pick up this book, it will be some time before you put your dog-eared, tear-stained copy back down. Wein succeeds on three fronts: historical verisimilitude, gut-wrenching mystery, and a first-person voice of such confidence and flair that the protagonist might become a classic character if only we knew what to call her. Alternately dubbed Queenie, Eva, Katharina, Verity, or Julie depending on which double-agent operation she's involved in, she pens her tale as a confession while strapped to a chair and recovering from the latest round of Gestapo torture. The Nazis want the codes that Julie memorized as a wireless operator, and she supplies them, but along the way also tells of her fierce friendship with Maddie, a British pilot. Though delivered at knifepoint, Julie's narrative is peppered with dark humor and minor acts of defiance, and the tension that builds up is practically unbearable.
added by kthomp25 | editBooklist, Daniel Kraus
 

» Add other authors (2 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Elizabeth Weinprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Christie, MorvenNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gaskell, LucyNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Manger, WhitneyDesignersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
November, SharynEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
"Passive resisters must understand that they are as important as saboteurs." –SOE Secret Operations Manual, 'Methods of Passive Resistance'
Dedication
For Amanda

we make a sensational team
First words
I AM A COWARD. I wanted to be heroic and I pretended I was. I have always been good at pretending.
Quotations
I have told the truth.
"Kiss me, Hardy!"
The soaring mountains rose around here, and the poets' waters glittered beneath her in the valleys of memory - hosts of golden daffodils, "Swallows and Amazons", Peter Rabbit. (p. 28)
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Two young women become unlikely best friends during WWII, until one is captured by the Gestapo. Only in wartime could a stalwart lass from Manchester rub shoulders with a Scottish aristocrat, one a pilot, the other a special operations executive. Yet whenever their paths cross, they complement each other perfectly and before long become devoted to each other. 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. Truth or lies? Honour or betrayal? Everything they've ever believed in is put to the test...
Haiku summary
Two girls, one friendship
we concealed in blood and ink.
I have told the truth. (octopedingenue)

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In 1943, a British fighter plane crashes in Nazi-occupied France and the survivor tells a tale of friendship, war, espionage, and great courage as she relates what she must to survive while keeping secret all that she can.

(summary from another edition)

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