Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein: Audio Review

Posted June 20, 2012 by Emily in book review, Uncategorized / 22 Comments

Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein: Audio ReviewCode Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein
Narrator: Morven Christie, Lucy Gaskell
Series: Code Name Verity #1
Published by Disney-Hyperion, Brilliance Audio on May 15, 2012
Genres: Young Adult, Action & Adventure, General, Historical, Europe, Holocaust, Military & Wars, Mysteries & Detective Stories, Social Issues, Friendship
Pages: 352
Format: Audio
Source: Brilliance Audio

I received this book for free from Brilliance Audio in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

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Oct. 11th, 1943—A British spy plane crashes in Nazi-occupied France. Its pilot and passenger are best friends. One of the girls has a chance at survival. The other has lost the game before it's barely begun.When “Verity” is arrested by the Gestapo, she's sure she doesn’t stand a chance. As a secret agent captured in enemy territory, she’s living a spy’s worst nightmare. Her Nazi interrogators give her a simple choice: reveal her mission or face a grisly execution./DIVDIVAs she intricately weaves her confession, Verity uncovers her past, how she became friends with the pilot Maddie, and why she left Maddie in the wrecked fuselage of their plane. On each new scrap of paper, Verity battles for her life, confronting her views on courage and failure and her desperate hope to make it home. But will trading her secrets be enough to save her from the enemy? Harrowing and beautifully written, Elizabeth Wein creates a visceral read of danger, resolve, and survival that shows just how far true friends will go to save each other. Code Name Verity is an outstanding novel that will stick with you long after the last page.

Audio Review:  This audio is going on my list of most favorites. Both narrators are superb and bring this story to life in a way that I would not have experienced if I hadn’t listened to the audio. Their beautiful accents and diversity of voices were such a treat for the ears. There is even a point where one of the narrators, Morven Christie, sings two German songs. It absolutely took my breath away. Not only is her reading voice beautiful, but her singing voice as well. Even without any accompaniment! This is one I definitely recommend for an audiobook.

Review: You may think that you’ve read all you care to read about World War II. But, like The Book Thief, Code Name Verity gives a whole new perspective on the human condition during this conflict that changed the world. Choosing not to focus on the holocaust, but on the bonds formed by those who would not have ever met in peace-time conditions, Code Name Verity will move you. Both Verity and Maddie are some of the most beautiful characters that I’ve ever read. Both of them, through stories about their friendship, exhibit pure compassion and caring. Each experience that is told adds another layer to their perseverance to protect each other even in the most dire of circumstances.

In the author’s note at the end of the audio, Wein explains some of the research that went into Code Name Verity to make it as realistic as possible. I was astounded at the level of detail, including some very interesting tidbits about the origins of the ballpoint pen. Though not every element of the story is airtight in regards to the historical accuracy, I think it provides a unique perspective on women’s roles in the war effort.

Beware, this book will make you cry. I am usually pretty tough-skinned with books. But, I had several mornings where make-up had to be re-applied when I got into work. But, like I said, it’s a book that will move you. And a few tears are always worth it.


22 responses to “Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein: Audio Review

  1. I tried this one on audio while driving to my parents, but couldn't get into the audio … the story sounds amazing and I've put it on hold at the library, but the physical copy. I think it was the narrator's accent that got me & the fact that the story goes from past to present AND certain names and dates were hard to understand in the audio.

    The book sounds great, though! Great review. 🙂

    • That's too bad that you couldn't get into this book on audio. It has some very beautiful moments. Particularly one part where the narrator sings. It was absolutely amazing.

  2. I'm reading the print version now, I was super excited to see it just came in at my library. I had a hard time getting into it at first but I'm starting to get the vibe and the narration style. It's one I can tell will be worth hanging on until the end.

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