Study Guide

Georgia Penn in Code Name Verity

By Elizabeth Wein

Georgia Penn

The American newspaper reporter who works on Nazi propaganda, Georgia Penn is yet another character who is not what she seems. According to Julie's narrative, Miss Penn is a total turncoat:

She is normally based in Paris and does a radio show called "No Place Like Home" full of jive tunes and pie recipes and discouraging hints that if you are stationed on a battleship in the Mediterranean, your girl is probably cheating on you back in the States. (1.20.XI.43.7)

Sounds pretty terrible, right? However, even in Julie's narrative, we get a hint that all is not as it seems when she tells Julie she's looking for verity—small v, so meaning the truth—and it's just too much of a coincidence to be, well, a coincidence. In fact, as Maddie tells us later, Georgia Penn has a very particular set of skills:

That's what this woman does, this mad American broadcaster, though her wages get paid by the Nazi Minister of Propaganda in Berlin—she walks bold as brass into prisons and prison camps and finds people […] She gets let in as entertainment for the imprisoned soldiers, and comes out with information. And she hasn't been caught yet. (2.16.32)

She's not exactly a double agent, and it's not very clear where her true loyalties lie, but both sides seem to need her and to get something out of her. She's yet another morally ambiguous character.

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