cover image Rescue


Jennifer A. Nielsen. Scholastic Press, $17.99 (400p) ISBN 978-1-338-62099-3

Meg Kenyon and her British father have always shared a love of deciphering secret codes, so when he is called away from their home on the France-Germany border on a mysterious WWII mission with the Allies, he leaves a jarful of codes for her continued practice. Nearly two years after his departure, 12-year-old Meg and her French mother and grandmother are living under Nazi occupation on Grandmère’s farm. Meg sells their produce on the black market and secretly works with the Resistance, leaving coded messages about the Nazis as warnings to other Resistance fighters. When she learns her father may be imprisoned, Meg goes on her own dangerous mission, secreting three German strangers out of France, one of whom has the power to rescue him. Nielsen (the Ascendance series) builds suspense through constantly shifting suspicions and loyalties, combined with the foursome’s risky journey. Whom should Meg trust? Has she interpreted her father’s recent coded letter correctly? Is she leading her group into or away from danger? Determined and stubborn Meg makes a believable—if occasionally two-dimensional—protagonist, and her story is well-paced and absorbing, with complicated plotting that rewards careful reading. Ages 8–12. [em]Agent: Ammi-Joan Paquette, Erin Murphy Literary. (Mar.) [/em]