For Freedom: The Story of a French Spy Hardcover – May 13 2003
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From School Library Journal
Grade 6-8-Life for Suzanne David, a 13-year-old French schoolgirl and music apprentice, dramatically changes in May, 1940, when she and her best friend witness the brutal death of a neighbor when a bomb drops directly in front of them. Soon the Germans take over Cherbourg, and the Davids are forced from their home into poverty. Then Suzanne is given the opportunity to help the Allies. Bravely, she risks her life, family, and singing career in order to spy for the Resistance. The pace of this suspenseful novel, told in first person and based on a true story, moves swiftly into action within the first chapter, showing the young heroine as strong, courageous, and clever. Filled, but not laden, with the events of the war, and peppered with French language and the culture of music, this novel will appeal to readers who enjoy history and espionage.
Kimberly Monaghan, Vernon Area Public Library, IL
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Gr. 6-12. Teenage Suzanne David is so focused on her dreams of becoming an opera star that she barely notices the growing Nazi presence in her French hometown of Cherbourg, until an air raid in 1940 literally puts the death and devastation at her feet. Her innocent appearance, iron will, and schedule as a singer-performer attract the attention of a local Resistance leader, who recruits her to become a spy and entrusts her to transport encoded Allied messages. Based on interviews with the real Suzanne David (who married an American soldier in 1945 and moved to Tennessee), this taut, engrossing World War II novel instantly immerses readers in the horrors faced by everyday citizens during the Nazi Occupation. The real focus, however, is the skin-crawling suspense story about one of France's youngest spies. Each chapter brings new intrigue and often shocking revelations, made all the more intense by the facts about codes and disguises and the fast-paced, first-person narration. There aren't many accounts for young readers about the French Resistance, and from setup to conclusion, this one resonates with authenticity, excitement, and heart. The teenage hero who must keep her spying a secret, even from her parents, will thrill historical fiction fans. Roger Leslie
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
Top Customer Reviews
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
The main characters in the story were Suzanne David, her parents, her brothers, her singing teacher, and Dr. Leclerc. Suzanne is a strong 13 year old girl, physically and mentally. She is strong physically when she gets her arm cut open and sewn back together, and she is strong mentally when Madame Montage gets blown up with her unborn baby. Suzanne is a spy that Dr. Lecrec has offered her to be. Her parents are cautious and care about Suzanne a lot. They were very worried when Suzanne came home from when Madame Montage was bombed and had blood on her body. They told Suzanne not to trust anyone. Her brothers care about her. They were really happy when Suzanne got a part as Carmen. Suzanne's singing teacher is caring and understandable. She listened to everything Suzanne said carefully. Dr. Leclerc is a man that is kind.
The main problem of the book occurs when Suzanne gets captured by the Nazis and is threatened to be killed if she doesn't tell them if she is a spy and some other information. Will she tell them, or will she not tell and maybe get killed?
My favorite part of this book was when Suzanne tried to hide in a haystack (because she forgot her identification papers) because it was funny and serious at the same time.
I would rate this book with 5 stars because the writing was very clear, it had a lot of suspense, and that it was based on a real Suzanne, which is really cool!
For Freedom is about World War II and how France was using spies to send important messeges in order to win the war. As Bradley's tragic, true story unfolds, you feel as you are there with Suzanne and experiencing the events of World War II. For Freedom is reccomended to ages 9-13.
The main character, Suzanne is thirteen years old and very brave. She and her family are forced to move from their comfortable house and take only the items that they can carry. Suzanne is also a very talented opera singer and hopes to join the opera company. The only way for Suzanne to keep moving on is to sing. Suzanne's best friend, Yvette, is not as strong as her and is in shock after she sees a woman who is friends with the girls die. She never talks after that and stares blankly at everyone.
The Nazis are patrolling every street, all the time. You must have your identification papers with you always or else the Nazis will get suspicious. Almost everyone has been thrown out of their house and is poor. Suzanne's father tells her that she can't trust any one. One day when Suzanne goes to the doctor because she has cut herself, the doctor asks her to make one of the hardest decisions that she has ever had to make. Depending on what she chooses will change her life forever and put her in grave danger. She cannot tell what she is doing to anyone. Not her mother, not her brothers, not even her best friend. If she chooses to do the job, she can never back out.
My favorite parts are when Suzanne has to keep herself hidden so that she won't be discovered when she is doing her job. One time she even sleeps in a moldy old haystack on the side of the road with her music teacher because she forgot her identification papers to show to the Nazis.
I would give this book five stars because the suspense never stops and there is a surprise in every chapter. Anyone who is looking for a fabulous, exciting book is in for a treat!