After her mother is shot at a checkpoint, fifteen-year-old Sarah–blonde, blue-eyed, and Jewish–finds herself on the run from a government that wants to see every person like her dead.
Then Sarah meets a mysterious man with an ambiguous accent, a suspiciously bare apartment, and a lockbox full of weapons. He’s a spy, and he needs Sarah to become one, too, to pull off a mission he can’t attempt on his own: infiltrate a boarding school attended by the daughters of top Nazi brass, befriend the daughter of a key scientist, and steal the blueprints to a bomb that could destroy the cities of Western Europe.
With years of training from her actress mother in the art of impersonation, Sarah thinks she’s ready. But nothing prepares her for her cutthroat schoolmates, and soon she finds herself in a battle for survival unlike any she’d ever imagined.
Orphan Monster Spy sees 15-year-old Sarah take on a mission that no one else would dare to try. She’s orphaned at the beginning of the book when her mother is murdered at a checkpoint. Terrified, she runs from the catastrophe site and finds her way to Captain Floyd, also known as Herr Haller. Unlikely friends, the two unite to take down a common enemy – the Nazis.
Sarah enrolls in a Nazi boarding school, with the help of Captain Floyd, to befriend the daughter of a Nazi scientist to uncover secrets about a deadly weapon he is creating.
It’s a gripping, action-packed read from start to finish. There are many disturbing twists and turns in this novel. From sadistic teachers to vile teenage bullies, Sarah is thrown into literal hell and fights against all odds to make it out alive.
Sarah is a strong female protagonist due to her strong-willed, determined and independent nature. Even when things look horrific, she battles on and fights against adversity. I find her character to be somewhat empowering. I also enjoyed seeing the development of the Captain’s and Sarah’s relationship
There are hair-raising moments that made my heart race and stomach churn. It’s a very dark story, so some may prefer to put it away and read it at a different time when things in the real world aren’t so bleak.
With themes such as child abuse, violence, and war, be cautious before you read it if you find these themes upsetting/triggering. For YA historical fiction, it is extremely powerful and I’m almost unsure that some parts of this book are suitable for younger readers.
I rate this a solid 4/5. Whilst it was a great book, I found some things too convenient and far-fetched which is why I couldn’t rate it 5/5. Still, I do highly recommend this if you’re interested in WWII fiction and Spy thrillers.
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