102. An Unlikely Spy by Terry Deary

Synopsis (as taken from Amazon) is as follows:

World War II has begun. Brigit has been evacuated to Wales from her home near the aeroplane factories in Coventry. But when it’s revealed that her father is German, Brigit runs away to join her mother in a very special training cam, where Churchill is building a secret army of spies and saboteurs known as the Special Operations Executive.

Brigit and her mother soon find themselves on the front line in Nazi-occupied France, where they search for double agents and meet with danger at every turn in their efforts to support the French resistance. But no-one will suspect Brigit is a spy, will they? After all, who would suspect a child?

Ability to read – I had no difficulty with reading this and I enjoyed how much I learnt from the story. The language was simple enough for me to understand and yet also complex enough to get across the seriousness of the situations presented within the story.

Characterisation – Brigit put up with a lot and that was before the War started. I knew that the attitude towards German’s living in the UK were bad but this book offered an account of how bad things really were. I can understand the thought process behind the actions but that doesn’t make hearing about them any better. I am forever thankful that I did not live during the War and that I live in a society that was shaped by the heroics of the war. Brigit was more of a hero to me than the heroes in fantasy mega novels or series. I thought she was a bright young girl with more sense on her shoulders than a lot of the adults depicted in this story. Her bravery and determination saw her well and her fearlessness in the face of danger took her far. It was interesting seeing the story unravel and to see all the different characters and the parts they played, good or bad, that got Brigit to the end of her story and the end of the world. Learning about the SOE’s was an informative and exciting experience and one that led me down many Wikipedia pages last night. Her Mother, Aimee, was very obviously a hero in Brigit’s eyes, that Aimee was a intricate player in both Wars made her character more integral and made her appear more real and raw in my eyes. I didn’t realise there was a book ‘The Silver Hand’, that tells the story of Aimee’s youth and the help she did in the First War. I shall have to read that as well!

Visualisation – I found it very easy to visualise what was happening. Though I had no knowledge of some of the places, I was able to construct a good image with the details given. I saw the characters very clearly and understood their actions with each other and the scenes around them.

Enjoyment – I picked this up in Watersones, where I went a little crazy with book buying. I thought the premise of this book sounded intriguing but I couldn’t help but wonder at its target audience. I think because back when I was between the ages of 9-12, this wouldn’t have been something that I’d want to read or something that I would perhaps be allowed to read (on account of my very over active imagination giving me nightmares and weird dreams.) On that bases, I couldn’t understand why this book had such a young target audience. Logical, I disregarded that and the imagination of my childhood and read this with as much gusto as I could manage. I am a bit of a history nerd and I loved that in this book I got to learn about a side of the war that I wasn’t knowledgeable in. It was a riveting story and I learned from it, which I love in a book.

This book is quite story, with large print and yet, I found it more immersive than some larger books I have read recently. The plot was the heart of this story and it was Brigit that led the way. It was informative and imaginary and a delight to read in a couple of hours.

Star Rating – ★★★★★

2 Comments Add yours

  1. I really like the artwork on the cover. Reminds me of some of the adventure books back when I was a child.
    Nice review.


    1. hshattock29 says:

      It’s nice isn’t it? It reminded me of the cover of the Railway Children that was given to me by a station worker at Waterloo a couple of years ago


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