Code Name Verity is a compelling, emotionally rich story with universal themes of friendship and loyalty, heroism and bravery. 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.
©2012 Elizabeth Gatland (P)2012 Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd
Addicted to Audible!
I listened to half this book, got confused, because I wasn't really paying attention and had to go back and start over. I am glad that I did or I would have missed a gem. This book was well written, great details and the author did not stereotype her characters, they were all multidimensional. It was hard to believe that the story was fiction. I liked the fact that 2 narrators were used, rather than one changing her accent, it made it less confusing. It's definately worth your time and credit
Two characters told the story and the narrative went back and forth between them. I liked both the characters and the story caught my interest. Both women are placed in extraordinary circumstances because of the war. They were amazing women but the author had me believing that it could be possible. I had tears in my eyes at the end and since I was running while listening to the story I might have looked a bit odd to fellow runners and walkers!
The book reminds me of other action adventure novels except the two main characters are women and men play only a supporting role.
I always think it is almost like a play when there are different characters to listen to.
This is an enjoyable, engaging listen.
Two young women's stories intertwine with the history of WWII, of women pilots and spies, of France, England, Scotland and Germany
Not telling. LOTS of memorable moments--even the small ones.
I think this might be my first. It will not be my last.
No. This is a book I loved listening to every time I got to it--and was glad it was the one on my Ipod.
Believe me when I say, you do not want to read about this book before you actually listen to it. There is absolutely no way to write a review without giving away spoilers..no way at all! All I will say is that it is a poignant story of friendship and survival by turns funny, sad and scary. It is wonderfully written and narrated and it will stay with you long after you have finished listening. In fact, I can almost guarantee it is a book you will listen to a second time.
The voice actors were completely wonderful. I generally don't prefer audiobooks because the narration can be so flat, but I loved the narrators in Code Name Verity.
I loved Verity. She became such a deep character as the story unfolded.
Morven and Lucy both did a fantastic job of bringing their characters to life, but I could have listened to Morven Christie talk all day.
Julie, she would have so much to say. Also for other reasons, but I can't say without spoiling bits of the story.
The book tends to be marketed as YA, but I believe that this is a fulfilling read for any age group.
Retired CFO, Army wife, Mom of five, Grandma of six, two sons who served in combat, love to read books that reflect my values and faith, love mysteries, historical, military stories, and books that don't waste my time . . . if it doesn't have an ending that was worth the wait, I'm not a happy camper.
I usually really like historical fiction, particularly WWI or WWII timeframe. I found this one very fragmented, confusing and hard to follow. I don't feel that it's appropriate for YA readers or listeners. I kept trying to get in to the actual story line and just couldn't get vested in it,
I can find a book to love in any genre -- a beautifully written classic, an interesting mystery or sci-fi, a trashy romance. Bring it!
STORY (historical fiction) - Code Name Verity is the story of two young women who each play a very important role in thwarting Hitler's advances in Europe. The first half is told by Verity, a radio operator who later becomes a spy. She is also referred to as Queenie, Ava Siler, First Officer Beaufort-Stewart and Julie, which can be a little confusing. She becomes a prisoner of war and is tortured into writing a confession, so her story alternates between her life in prison and flashbacks to events as they actually happened. (Her torture wouldn't have been a picnic, but I'm pretty squeamish and it didn't bother me to hear it.)
Maddy's story is approximately the last half of the book. She is a pilot who flies secret missions and is the one who flew Verity to Nazi-occupied France. Her story dovetails with and goes beyond Verity's.
I almost stopped listening several hours into the book because it seemed to be just the story of young women becoming best friends during the war, but as the secret missions started, etc., it got VERY interesting and intense.
PERFORMANCE - There are two young female narrators. Verity sounds Scottish and Maddy sounds more British, in keeping with their characters. There's also singing and a short performance by a male narrator. Everything is well-done.
OVERALL - (Actual rating 3.5) Very exciting book after the slow start. Since it occurs during World War II, there are mature themes. Guys won't like the female bonding part of the story but will enjoy the covert activities and historical background.
This was such a terrific story with the historical backdrop of female pilots in WW II in England. I'm generally not a huge fan of WW II stories but the balance between the setting and the friendship of these 2 women was so well done that it just flowed very nicely. The narrators both did a tremendous job of making the difference between the background of the characters stand out while making the actual friendship so believable. This book kept me thinking about it long after I finished it (very unusual). Now I've been looking for other works by this author. Well done!
* Hated it! **Endured it, hoping it would redeem itself; *** Okay; **** Great listen! ***** Outstanding! I'll be listening to it again!
I spent my formative years soaking up every book I could find about WWII (both fiction and non-fiction), so I knew all about Allied spies, secret Lysander flights into France and other occupied territories, the French Resistance, and the Gestapo’s response to these activities, so I thought I knew what to expect from this book.
My initial reaction was that of disappointment. I’d made the selection based on overall reader ratings and had not read the detailed reviews; had I done so, I would have prepared me for how the book unfolds. The first half of the book is a narrative by a captured female spy, codename Verity. She tells of her relationship to her friend Maddie, a skilled pilot who ultimately ends up flying her into France, and details her treatment by her French and German guards and Gestapo interrogators.
If you’re squeamish and worried about hearing about the sadistic techniques uses by Gestapo torturers, you need have no fear because Elizabeth Wein uses such a light touch that Verity’s plight just does not ring true and I was ready to rate this as a three-star listen.
Halfway through the book, Maddie takes over as narrator, telling the same story from her perspective. That sounds like a bad plot gimmick, but one quickly realizes that not all is at it seems and forces one to rethink everything one has heard from Verity’s hand and mouth. Ultimately, I had to find a quiet corner and listen to this book through to the end – it’s that compelling of a tale, and cleverly written despite my initial misgivings.
The two narrators both do an outstanding job (Verity and Maddie have their own distinct and authentic voices) – full marks to both of them for bringing their characters alive.
Give it a listen – you won’t regret it.
(If you find this review helpful, please click on the button below. Wuff!)
Its in the top mainly bc i loved the narrator so much!
Jamie oddly enough
The narrator was amazing! I will look into the other books that she has done!
"Vividly imagined and beautifully written"
It was a gripping story told in voices that were always convincing
I thought it stood alone though many other books have been written about the lives of undercover agents, for example Charlotte Gray, but this was told from a very different, personal perspective
No but I would like to
It made me smile and feel sad and shocked in equal parts
I love the way the narrative was told by the two protagonists. The structure was quite challenging with first person narrative turning into third person story-telling in the first part but it worked very well. Gut wrenching and moving. Excellent researched and beautifully written.
"A great listen!"
I listened to the audiobook and have to say that it was very well read, with two readers doing the separate sections (there are two narratives, each written by one of the two main characters). It was therefore a very enjoyable listen, and also a rather quick one. The story itself is very engaging. It is aimed at YA readers, but I would say that it no less a novel for adults. It is a historical novel which takes place during the second World War. The novel details the friendship of two young women, one of them a spy and the other a pilot. During a mission to France things go wrong and the spy almost immediately gets apprehended by the Germans. The first half of the novel is her "confession", written out for her interrogator in exchange for more time alive. However, things are not all what they seem here... but I really ought not to give much more away in terms of plot.
There are some fairly graphic descriptions of the methods of torture used by the Gestapo, and other scenes that are similarly shocking. The narrative is rather fast paced and despite the overall horror of the situation that Verity has found herself in, there are moments of humour since she is able - despite her suffering - to crack jokes about her interrogators and herself. There are numerous references to literature, such as Kim by Rudyard Kipling and to the poetry of Robert Burns. Verity is a well read young woman, in addition to her education in a Swiss private school. What I also found interesting about this character is her native background; she is a Scottish aristocrat and a descendant of Mary Queen of Scots and William Wallace (or so she claims - it is implied that perhaps we are not meant to take this at face value). Her Scottish roots are important to the story in some ways, and her insistence on being Scottish, not English, is repeated several times in the narrative. One thing that bothered me, though, is the fact that Verity states that Wallace's execution consisted of him being torn apart by four horses. This is grossly inaccurate, since Wallace was hanged, drawn and quartered (horses were no part of it, except probably to draw the wooden hurdle that Wallace was strapped to and in which he was dragged to the place of execution). As a Scotswoman who is both fiercely patriotic and very much aware of Scotland's troubled and dramatic history, Verity would not make this mistake in reality.
All in all, this is an enjoyable and well written novel, and the story-line is in most parts a convincing one. There are, however, some plot developments for which this reader at least really had to consciously suspend disbelief in order to be able to enjoy the story to the full.
(this review originally published on Goodreads)
There are no listener reviews for this title yet.
Report Inappropriate Content
If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.