Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 5
Genre: Historical fiction
What did you like about the book? Thought you’d read everything about World War II? I thought I had. Then I read Night Witches and took a heart-stopping ride on a flimsy U-2 biplane with a teen-aged pilot during the Russian efforts to repel the Nazis from Stalingrad. This novel opens during an air raid with tragic consequences for 16-year-old Valya, and follows her as she tries to make her way out of Stalingrad to join the Night Witches, all-women flying battalions charged with bombing Nazi depots and encampments. She wants to join her older sister, Tatyana, who is already flying missions. This is a thrilling, fast paced war story in a compelling historical setting. It is also a story of the bond between sisters.
Anything you didn’t like about it? No
To whom would you recommend this book? This reminds me of Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein, about a teen-aged spy in Nazi-occupied France.
Who should buy this book? Middle school and public libraries
Where would you shelve it ? Teen fiction
Should we (librarians/readers) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? Yes
Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City and State: Stephanie Tournas, Robbins Library, Arlington, MA
Date of review: April 20, 2017