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Elena Likes Books

I am an avid reader of YA, fantasy, and romance, a librarian, and a writer of fantasy short fiction.

Currently reading

Cut & Run
Abigail Roux, Madeleine Urban
Where the Sidewalk Ends
Shel Silverstein
The Mad Scientist's Guide to World Domination: Original Short Fiction for the Modern Evil Genius
John Joseph Adams
The Thousand Names
Django Wexler
The Duchess Hunt
Jennifer Haymore

Rose Under Fire

Rose Under Fire - Elizabeth Wein Rose is an ATA pilot, shuttling planes and people around England in service of the WWII war effort. She's been flying since she was twelve, and she knows she has more skill and experience than many of the green boys flying planes over in France on the front lines. So when her uncle, a hotshot military engineer with connections, arranges for her to fly to Paris shortly after it's been liberated, she's thrilled. But Rose gets more than she bargained for on her jaunt to France, and what comes next will test her in every way the human spirit can be tested.I was not expecting this to be a sequel to [b:Code Name Verity|11925514|Code Name Verity|Elizabeth Wein|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1337034341s/11925514.jpg|16885788], so I was startled to start reading and discover that Maddie is a prominent secondary character. Honestly, I think that was one of the downsides for me reading this, because there were so many bits where Elizabeth Wein did little call-outs to Code Name Verity, and seriousface WWII historical fiction does not need cutesy little shout-outs and recurring characters in "companion novels." I'm not saying Maddie is a bad character, but I do think this book would have been stronger without her.This book was not as good as Code Name Verity. I just have to get that off my chest. It was, however, pretty damned good.Like Code Name Verity, it took me a while to get into this book. Specifically, Wein's quickly-becoming-trademark unusual narrative style choices, which aid the book as a whole, make the first 60 pages really, really boring. But all the boring, chipper, girl-who-really-wants-to-be-on-the-front-lines-because-she's-a-hotshot-pilot-and-craves-excitement blandness serve as a stark contrast to what comes later.What comes later is...well. If you read Code Name Verity, brace yourself for that kind of intensity. This book was horrifying, and beautifully written. I didn't think Rose was that great of a character, but I did love all the relationships she forms through her ordeal, and how her friendships keep her going. She also had some interesting internal conflicts throughout the book, and some of them were really fascinating to think about.Overall, if you liked Code Name Verity, you will probably enjoy this as well. If you didn't like Code Name Verity, this book also probably isn't for you (unless your issue with CNV was the unreliable narrator, because there's none of that here). I don't think Rose is a particularly compelling or lovable character, but the situations she finds herself in are compelling in and of themselves, and make the book worth reading.Thanks to NetGalley and Disney-Hyperion for providing an ARC of this title.