Wednesday, March 13, 2013

BOOK REVIEW: THE ROMEO AND JULIET CODE


Phoebe Stone
Arthur A. Levine Books
2011

Available: Hardcopy, paperback, Kindle

Up until now, Felicity has lived the high life with her glamorous parents Danny and Winnie in Europe. But because of the war, it's not safe for Felicity to remain in London with them. The Germans are bombing the city. That's why her parents have dropped her off to live with distant relatives in Maine in the United States of America. She has to adjust to a strange new country and relatives that seem even stranger__ as in odd. Her uncle Gideon is secretive. Her aunt Miami reads and recites Shakespeare. All the time. The Gram is closed mouthed and practical. Plus there's a captain living behind a closed door upstairs. He never comes out and she is sternly warned not to disturb him. She can't wait for her parents to return and rescue her, but they don't. And when letters begin to arrive addressed in her father's handwriting, they're not to her. Instead, they're for her uncle and he's not sharing. When she finally gets a sneak peak at one of them, they're written in a secret code. She just knows they're in trouble, but how can she help when the code is a mystery?
There are several mysteries woven into the story, all of which are compelling. Felicity is a likable and spunky heroine who's determination to set things right, drives the plot forward. During the course of the story, she manages to impact every member of her new found family. It was an enjoyable read. Although World War II is the backdrop of the story, it is truly seen through the eyes of a young girl and does not overpower the novel.

Target audience: Grades 6-9
Mystery/suspense: on several layers
Kid appeal: good



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