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Winter 2020 Kids Indie Next List
“Elizabeth Wein yet again humanizes history by taking the true story of the Allies capturing the first enigma machine in World War II and using that background to tell the deeply personal stories of three disparate young people who find each other in the midst of war. With characters familiar and new, Wein’s story captures both the danger and turbulence of a world at war, and the moments of happiness that still emerge in spite of that.”
— Mackenzie Van Engelenhoven, The King's English Bookshop, Salt Lake City, UT
The hair stood up at the back of my neck. Those letters meant something. And with the cipher machine, I'd worked it out myself.
1940. Facing a seemingly endless war, fifteen-year-old Louisa Adair wants to fight back, make a difference, do something-anything to escape the Blitz and the ghosts of her parents, who were killed by enemy action. But when she accepts a position caring for an elderly German woman in the small village of Windyedge, Scotland, it hardly seems like a meaningful contribution. Still, the war feels closer than ever in Windyedge, where Ellen McEwen, a volunteer driver with the Royal Air Force, and Jamie Beaufort-Stuart, a flight leader for the 648 Squadron, are facing a barrage of unbreakable code and enemy attacks they can't anticipate.
Their paths converge when a German pilot lands in Windyedge under mysterious circumstances and plants a key that leads Louisa to an unparalleled discovery: an Enigma machine that translates German code. Louisa, Ellen, and Jamie must work together to unravel a puzzle that could turn the tide of the war? but doing so will put them directly in the cross-hairs of the enemy.
Featuring beloved characters from Code Name Verity and The Pearl Thief, as well as a remarkable new voice, this brilliant, breathlessly plotted novel by award-winning author Elizabeth Wein is a must-read.