‘I have two weeks. You’ll shoot me at the end no matter what I do. That’s what you do to enemy agents. It’s what we do to enemy agents. But I look at all the dark and twisted roads ahead and cooperation is the easy way out. Possibly the only way out for a girl caught red-handed doing dirty work like mine – and I will do anything, anything to avoid SS-Hauptsturmführer von Linden interrogating me again. He has said that I can have as much paper as I need. All I have to do is cough up everything I can remember about the British War Effort. And I’m going to. But the story of how I came to be here starts with my friend Maddie. She is the pilot who flew me into France – an Allied Invasion of Two. We are a sensational team.’ (Goodreads) (441 pages, 6th february 2012, Egmont Press)
I loved this book so much. I already heard so many great things about it from other bloggers and booktubers, but I just wanted to see for myself how good this book actually is. And I must say I was happily surprised.
It was a bit strange at first of how the book was constructed. Of how the story was divided in two. First from one perspective and then we got the same exact story or period of time, from her friend’s perspective. But after a while I got used to it and enjoyed it immensely. I thought we would go between the characters, but the way she told the story made so much more sense at the end. Because it’s at that point we really understand what happened and what impact it will have or had on their friendship.
First we get the story from Maddie’s point of view. She is, at first glance, the stronger of the two. She flies and flies and just wants to fly, taking every opportunity to go into the skies and sometimes even at her own peril. But it’s there that she meets Julie, and while she thinks (no spoilers) that some events are her fault, after getting all the information, you really see that she cares so deeply for Julie. This friendship is the main premise of the story and for this reason alone it’s great.
Then we have Julie. She is quieter, a small girl with a quick wit. At first I didn’t really like her honestly, because I felt like we didn’t really have all the information or we didn’t get that much from her character and reasons. This makes sense though because she is a secret agent and she learns not to divulge information. But I really came to care for her at the end of the book, when everything felt into place. You see that, although they both think they are not strong, they care deeply for each other and their friendship makes them both better persons.
That was what made this book so great. Next to the brilliant characters and the history (it really felt like the second World War), it’s the way Elizabeth Wein told the story. All the information we got from Maddie’s story fit perfectly with Julie’s story and so much made sense after reading everything. Reading it a second time, I think, will give so much more out of it because you now know how it’ll end and, for me personally, it will be great to see how it all blends together.
This is a book I will cherish for the rest of my life. I read it in one setting and I just couldn’t put it down. It stuck to me for months afterwards. Even now, writing my review of it (I think) a year later, it just all comes back and I feel the tears on my cheeks. I can perfectly remember how I felt reading this book. I can see where I was when reading this book. It took me this long writing a review about it, because I wanted to give it the best one possible and I just couldn’t do it so soon after reading it. Needless to say that this book left an impact and I immediately gave to everyone in my family to read it. (My sister did, and she enjoyed it as well.)
5 out of 5 stars! A perfect blend of female friendship, history and a thriller. There are elements for everyone. Give it a go and let me know what you think of it!