Rave Reviews Log: Historical Fiction

January 23, 2012

The Romeo and Juliet Code

By Phoebe Stone
Era: World War II, Maine
Rating: 3 3/4 stars

Eleven year old Felicity is brought from England to Bottlebay, Maine when the bombings in London become too destructive.  Her parents Danny and Winnie leave her with Danny's mother, brother and sister and then they return to England.  Felicity is miserable, but when a letter arrives in her father's handwriting for her uncle from Portugal, she is mad with curiosity.  Even worse, her Uncle Gideon snatches the letter away and won't let Felicity read it.  Why are her parents in Portugal instead of London?  Mystery abounds in the house, but Felicity makes a friend in Derek, the adopted 12 year old who lives with the Bathburns, too.  Slowly, slowly, Felicity, now nicknamed "Flissy," begins to settle into her new life, but she has so many questions.  Why won't Uncle Gideon let her read the letters?  Why is the piano nailed shut?  Why won't anyone tell her about the fight her father and uncle had?  Then Flissy gets a glance at one of the letters and discovers it is entirely in code.  What exactly ARE her parents up to?  As Flissy and Derek unravel the code, they also unravel the other mysteries in the house, but was it better not to know the truth?  An interesting twist on a World War II story, focusing on the efforts made in America before we entered the war officially.  


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