If you are looking for a book with rich emotional content, heart-pounding adventure, fascinating history, and deeply involving characters, look no further. This story, based on the real-life adventures of a young Norwegian spy during World War II, has all those things in spades. The action begins when Nazi Germany invades Norway, and fourteen-year-old Espen is pulled little by little over the next five years into the resistance movement. In addition to this dangerous central fact of Espen’s life are the everyday indignities of existence under German occupation, worries over his younger sister (who is likewise involved in resistance activities), a blossoming romance, and conflicts with his best friend, who has sided with the occupying soldiers. Espen’s humanity (and that of his family and most of his friends) shines determinedly through and the last thirty pages or so will keep readers riveted. An author’s note at the book’s end talks about the actual people and events that form the basis of the story, and fills in what happened afterward. Do not miss this one.
Shadow on the Mountain
June 12, 2013
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