So, I may have teared up just writing the title of this book. Because, you know, I have problems.
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.
I bought this book awhile ago I don’t remember exactly why. Someone had recommended it I guess. And then it sat on my shelves for awhile because I am, admittedly, a shallow reader. I like my books fast paced, entertain, with romance and a happy ending.
But sometimes, you just want to read something with substance. And sometimes you just want a good cry.
This book was not fast paced. There were times, especially after the point of view shift, where I was SCREAMING at it to go faster. That I didn’t care about all this stuff I just needed to know what happened to…well…someone. But I didn’t skim or skip ahead. I still read every single word as if my life depended on it.
I love that this is a book with an agenda but still manages to tell an amazing, entertaining and sometimes funny story. It’s obvious the author loves planes and flying and wanted to write a book about the hsitory of women pilots. And she weaves in so much detail about that side of things that, if you don’t care about women in WWII or about airplanes/piloting you might find it a little boring. I found it quite interesting and Wein’s writing is such a joy to read that I didn’t mind.
You know how I mentioned that I preferred my books with romance? Well, Code Name Verity doesn’t really have any (I mean, I still found an OTP as you can see by viewing this twitter conversation) but it is still a book about a relationship. The relationship just happens to be friendship based instead of romance based but that does not stop it from being powerful and amazing and real and heartbreaking.
Also! I wanted to say that though this book is sad and horrible (in a good way) and there’s misery and torture and hopelessness, there is still humour. Which was awesome. I loved Verity so much because she had the ability to be sarcastic and funny while in a Gestapo prison. And it didn’t feel forced or anything.
Everything else that I have to say about this book would completely spoil it and there’s no way I’m going to do that. Lets just say that it gives you all this hope and then snatches it away in the most horrible way and then shows you the aftermath of that. And I cried and cried. So, I would say that’s pretty accurate where war is concerned