Recently, historical fiction has made a major comeback in YA. I absolutely love it, but I admit, this comeback made me skeptical of Girl in the Blue Coat. Was it just following a trend? Thankfully, I had nothing to worry about.
Monica Hesse’s debut takes place in Amsterdam, which has been recently taken over by Nazi Germany. The only reason our main character Hanneke hasn’t been killed (or worse) is that she has blonde hair, blue eyes, and is, of course, Christian. She’s far from a Hitler Youth poster girl however. It’s a small rebellion, but Hanneke sells items for the black market. Cigarettes, lipstick, chocolate, all relatively mundane items.
On the job one day, Hanneke get a strange request. Someone asks her to find a person. At first, Hanneke refuses. The person, a Jewish teenager named Mirjam Roodveldt, is probably long gone to a concentration camp, or killed. As Hanneke is drawn deeper into the underground resistance however, she begins to rethink her decision. Mirjam isn’t too different from herself. Is it possible Mirjam could be saved?
Girl in the Blue Coat is smart, gripping, and a can’t miss for lovers of historical fiction It comes out April 5th.