Excellent! 5+ stars. You know that you’ve read a powerful book when you still think about it days after you’ve finished reading. Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein is such a book. It is an intense read set against the backdrop of World War II England and occupied France.To fully enjoy Code Name Verity, avoid all spoilers. Do not skip ahead; do not peek at the end. Have a supply of tissues ready; you will need them. Read this book slowly to savor that Scottish girl’s defiance and her sense of humor. Let her voice come out loud and clear as she grapples with her guilt at having to betray her country. Our narrator (notice how I don’t use her name? That would be a spoiler.) must write a “confession” for her German captors and she intricately weaves her own story in a lengthy document written on paper, sheets of music, a Jewish doctor’s prescription pad, and some stolen index cards. Bit by bit, her story comes to life. She’s been captured because of a cultural mistake – she looked the wrong way when crossing the street. Her editorial quips about her keepers Anna Engel and Thibaut are often informative and hilarious. Her playfulness with the prescription pad made me laugh. Yet she knows her time is limited and that she will be shot, sooner than later. The literary references to Scheherazade rang true. As long as she kept writing, the Scottish girl felt that she could get her story down on paper and that she would be kept alive another day. When Engel complains that the girl was not writing what she should be she is told:“Fraulein Engel, you are not a student of literature,” he said. “The English Flight Officer has studied the craft of the novel. She is making use of suspense and foreshadowing.”I loved all the references to Peter Pan. What a nice touch that the girl’s mother always kept a window open when her children were flying, just like Mrs. Darling. The Scottish girl even compared her German commander von Linden to Captain Hook. It gave me hope for a happily ever after. I was fascinated by the women’s role in the war. I had never heard of the ATA – Air Transport Auxiliary, the women who ferried aircraft from one field to another. These were amazing women who flew without instrumentation or GPS. I loved reading about the French Resistance and how they operated. It is truly difficult to imagine the difficult conditions under which they operated, especially today with all of our instant messaging tools. Every bit of information had to be passed by hand. What a scary, dangerous world it was. Code Name Verity is an expertly crafted tale of friendship and loyalty during World War II. It is an inspiring and powerful read. Every little detail has meaning so read carefully and think of all the brave people who fought during World War II. Lest we forget.“I haven’t really told anyone anything of use. I’ve only told a story.But I’ve told the truth. Isn’t that ironic? They sent me because I am good at telling lies. But I have told the truth.”Review posted on Badass Book Reviews.Thank you to Netgalley and Doubleday Canada for a review copy of this book.