• Recent Posts

  • CLP_Teens

    Error: Twitter did not respond. Please wait a few minutes and refresh this page.

  • Blog Categories

  • Archives

  • November 2012
    M T W T F S S
    « Oct   Dec »
     1234
    567891011
    12131415161718
    19202122232425
    2627282930  

I Spy: Espionage in Fact & Fiction

I’ve been into spy stories ever since I first saw the super-old black & white movie Mata Hari (1931!), starring Greta Garbo as the iconic femme fatale who supposedly seduced secrets out of soldiers during World War I and was eventually executed for being a German spy. The movie is definitely soaked in old-school Hollywood historical inaccuracy, but the real story is pretty fascinating, too. According to witness accounts, Mata Hari walked calmly into the muddy field where she was to be shot, refused to wear the customary blindfold, and blew a kiss to the firing squad right before they let her have it. Ever since then, historians have rehashed the facts, trying to separate truth and fiction. Was she guilty? Innocent? A double agent?

Mata Hari’s tale is just one of the many stories packed into Paul Janeckzo’s book The Dark Game: True Spy Stories. The author spins a quick history of espionage from the Revolutionary War into the modern era, dropping tons of cool details about secret identities and disguises, hidden messages, traitors, and high-tech spy gear. Did you know that George Washington was the leader of the first spy organization in the U.S.? Or that the Native American “Choctaw code-talkers” were some of the most crucial secret message-senders during the first World War? If you ever wanted to know more about phone-tapping, code-cracking, or the CIA, this is a book worth picking up.

If fiction is more your thing, check out Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein. This tale of World War II espionage is definitely one of my favorite books of the year. It’s about two young women–Maddie, a pilot, and Julie, a spy– who meet amid the terror and bravery of the war, share a few top secret missions, and become fast friends. The war drags on, the stakes get higher, and then Julie gets caught behind enemy lines and taken prisoner by the Gestapo. That’s when it becomes impossible to stop turning the pages. Grab a copy of Code Name Verity to find out what happens!

…& head to the library for more stories of spies– true and invented.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 196 other followers

%d bloggers like this: