|Agent most wanted : the never-before-told story of the most dangerous spy of World War II|
Author: Purnell, Sonia
A young readers adaptation of the story of Virginia Hall; the unassuming American spy who helped the allies win World War II.
|Added Entry - Personal Name:||Purnell, Sonia|
Kirkus Reviews (+) (08/15/22)
School Library Journal (+) (10/28/22)
Booklist (+) (07/01/22)
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 07/01/2022 *Starred Review* In the late 1930s, Virginia Hall was a free-spirited young woman who had studied in Paris and Vienna before beginning a career in diplomatic service at U.S. embassies abroad, performing mainly secretarial duties. She was capable of much more. When WWII began, she became an ambulance driver for a French regiment, but a special-operations branch of British intelligence hired her to gather information about German operations in Vichy France. She was uncommonly successful at eluding the enemy. Smart and resourceful, she would ultimately identify local French resistance groups, arrange for the British to supply them with arms, and direct secret operations against German forces. While Hall’s cover as a credentialed American journalist provided some protection from the Gestapo, her courage, her ingenuity, and the loyalty of her allies were more vital. The young people’s edition of Purnell’s acclaimed A Woman of No Importance (2019), this riveting biography provides the framework of Hall’s life, concentrating on the war years and her phenomenal ability to fade into the background while gathering intelligence, communicating with the British, and undermining German control within occupied France. Young readers intrigued by espionage during World War II will find this a well-researched, smoothly written, and completely riveting account of Hall’s experiences. - Copyright 2022 Booklist.
Booklist - 07/01/2022 - Copyright 2022 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 10/28/2022 Gr 5–7—Purnell adapts her bestselling A Woman of No Importance for a younger crowd in this gripping nonfiction work that reads like a spy thriller. Virginia Hall was known throughout her life by many names. She was Dindy to her family, Marie Monin to the French Resistance, and (because of her prosthetic leg) the "Limping Lady of Lyon" to Hitler's Gestapo and Abwehr secret police forces, but for many years, she was no one to most of the world, the true weight of her role in World War II unknown. Strong-willed Dindy's family was not surprised that she was unwilling to settle for a life as a housewife. After running off to France to escape a fiancé, Virginia came back to the States, went to college, and set her sights on a career as a diplomat. Though she never rose above a secretarial position in the deeply sexist state department, she worked in Europe as Hitler rose to power. Refusing to sit idly by, Virginia joined the fight, first as a volunteer ambulance driver in France and then, through some chance encounters, as the only U.S. citizen on the British spy force. The Brits trained her in spycraft and guerrilla war tactics, her primary objective being to recruit, train, arm, and maintain a French resistance behind enemy lines. The account of her many exploits is wonderfully written and made even more phenomenal by her determination. Readers will walk away inspired. VERDICT A first purchase where WWII history and riveting tales of adventure are popular.—Abby Bussen - Copyright 2022 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.