Oct 22, 2013

Rose Under Fire by Elizabeth Wein Review

Rose Under Fire by Elizabeth Wein
(Code Name Verity, #2)
Release Date: September 10, 2013
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion; 368 pages
While flying an Allied fighter plane from Paris to England, American ATA pilot and amateur poet, Rose Justice, is captured by the Nazis and sent to Ravensbrück, the notorious women's concentration camp. Trapped in horrific circumstances, Rose finds hope in the impossible through the loyalty, bravery and friendship of her fellow prisoners. But will that be enough to endure the fate that’s in store for her?

Elizabeth Wein, author of the critically-acclaimed and best-selling Code Name Verity, delivers another stunning WWII thriller. The unforgettable story of Rose Justice is forged from heart-wrenching courage, resolve, and the slim, bright chance of survival.

I got the chance to meet Elizabeth Wein before finishing this book (I was about halfway through when I attending her signing). She was very gracious about not spoiling this book but she talked about the research that went into this book as well as Code Name Verity and it fascinated me. I have never been one who enjoyed history especially while in high school; it was a class I had to take but I had no interest in it. It's funny that as you get older and history becomes more interesting you wish you would've paid more attention while you were younger and in school. Regardless, Code Name Verity was different from anything I've ever read but it blew me away so when I found out that there would be a companion novel, I was super excited. The mix of fiction and facts is done brilliantly and in a way that makes you feel like you are actually there, in these stories...sitting in the plane with these brave woman pilots.

While I enjoyed Code Name Verity I can say that I loved Rose Under Fire. I was a little nervous about reading this because I wanted to read Maddie's story and was afraid she wouldn't even be in this book but she was; quite a bit. So I was satisfied about not being her story but at least being able to see her (a lot in the beginning and the end of the book).

Rose Justice in a young American pilot who has the unfortunate luck of being captured (while flying) and being sent to a woman's concentration camp because the German's really didn't know what to do with her. Reading about what went on in one of the more tame concentration camps was mind blowing, depressing yet fascinating. We all know the history of the Holocaust and we all know what happened at these concentration camps but nothing like what you read in this book. Like I said, the author did a ridiculous amount of research to make her story as true as possible. She does this flawlessly; though the characters are fiction what they went through was not.

I finished this book almost a week ago and I'm still walking around thinking about it; thinking about Rose Justice and all the girls who survived this camp and even those who didn't. This is a book that will stick with you for a very long time and one that, as depressing as it was, was a beautiful story. You'll get choked up over scenes, you'll want to be sick over other scenes but there's also a perfect amount of humor mixed in that makes you laugh when you really needed it most. To call this book brilliant is a understatement but there's really no other way to describe it.

Whether you've read Code Name Verity or not, this is a book you need to pick up. It's not one you have to read only if you've read Code Name Verity but it's one I strongly suggest reading only after you've read Code Name Verity as it will spoil the first book for you. The first book is one you don't want spoiled; it'll take away from the story. Regardless, add these books to your shelf right this instant.

Thank you so much to Disney-Hyperion for an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thank you to Elizabeth Wein for being so brilliant, kind and full of so much interesting facts that attending your signing was by the far the most enlightening experience for me.

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