Reviewed for High School, 2008

Tamar

This book won a Carnegie medal for young adult literature in the United Kingdom, but it never quite caught on in the United States. That's a shame, because it's pitch-perfect for teens. Layered, exciting, and packed with secrets that unravel one by one, it's the tale of two Allied spies who parachute into Nazi-occupied Holland during the winter of 1944, to help organize the Dutch Resistance movement. The book moves from WWII, to fifty years later, when a fifteen-year-old girl named Tamar inherits a box from one of the spies (her grandfather), full of coded messages and hazy clues. Brimming with mystery, intrigue, complex characters, and even a little romance, this book brings a period of history often studied in high school, to life. (Candlewick, $8.99)