Study Guide

Code Name Verity Writing Style

By Elizabeth Wein

Writing Style


This is something both Julie's and Maddie's narratives have in common. Whatever comes into the narrators' heads goes down on the page, which they both admit is maybe not a great idea when your head is full of official secrets. After writing some choice observations of von Linden, Julie worries:

Oh my God, why do I do it—again and again? I HAVE THE BRAIN OF A PTARMIGAN HEN. HE WILL SEE ANYTHING I WRITE. (1.20.XI.43.86)

While Maddie frets:

If I am caught writing this I will be in trouble, whoever catches me—German, French, British. Even American. I shouldn't write anything down. COURT-MARTIAL. (2.1.14)

In other words, Julie and Maddie just can't seem to keep their minds from wandering—and their hands from putting it all down on the page. Oops. And speaking of wandering, both narrators weave in and out of what's happening in the moment (or at least very recently), bringing up memories and random observations. It's a job to stay on top of what's happening now, what they're remembering, and what's just commentary—but it also makes for a richly layered story.

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