by Veronica Rossi
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Release Date: June 23rd 2020
Genre: Young Adult, Historical Fiction
A reimagining of the story behind Agent 355--a New York society girl and spy for George Washington during the Revolutionary War--perfect for fans of Tatiana de Rosnay's Sarah's Key and the novels of Julie Berry.
Rebellious Frannie Tasker knows little about the war between England and its thirteen colonies in 1776, until a shipwreck off her home in Grand Bahama Island presents an unthinkable opportunity. The body of a young woman floating in the sea gives Frannie the chance to escape her brutal stepfather--and she takes it.
Assuming the identity of the drowned Emmeline Coates, Frannie is rescued by a British merchant ship and sails with the crew to New York. For the next three years, Frannie lives a lie as Miss Coates, swept up in a courtship by a dashing British lieutenant. But after witnessing the darker side of the war, she realizes that her position gives her power. Soon she finds herself eavesdropping on British officers, risking everything to pass information on to George Washington's Culper spy ring as agent 355. Frannie believes in the fight for American liberty--but what will it cost her? Inspired by the true "355" and rich in historical detail and intrigue, this is the story of an unlikely New York society girl turned an even unlikelier spy.
Frannie Tasker spent her days diving for wrecks in the Grand Bahamas in 1776. After her mother's death, Frannie is left with her step-father Sewal who abuses her and now wants to take her to be his wife. Frannie takes an opportunity to escape with a shipwreck that she spots, and assumes the life of a woman aboard who drowned. There were no survivors of the wreck and everyone believes that Frannie, now assuming the role of Emmaline Coates, is a miracle. Frannie is swept away upon a British merchant ship on its way to her new home-and war in New York. Frannie takes upon the task of learning to be a highborn lady who is soon to inherit. Frannie shares her secret only with Asa Lane, a rebel being held on the ship. Frannie plays her role well, three years later she is fully accepted as Emmaline and is ready to be married off. Her chosen suitor, British Lieutenant James Duncan sweeps her off her feet and talks a lot about his role in the British Army. Frannie soon finds a way to feel more like herself, as a spy for George Washington known as Agent 355, codename Lady.
Agent 355 was a real spy for George Washington in the Culper Spy Ring known for helping with the arrest of Major John André. While little is known of the real Agent 355, I absolutely adored Veronica Rossi's creation of Frannie. From her time diving for wrecks in the Bahamas to her grand escape on the merchant ship, playing the part of Emmaline perfectly and her rediscovery of her sense of adventure by joining the Culper ring, Frannie had me amazed. Frannie's life as both a wrecker and a lady of privilege creates a wide contrast as well as an additional layer of suspense of someone unmasking her carefully built disguise. As much as I loved the story of Frannie helping the rebels with her Spy ring, I further enjoyed the constant struggle within Frannie of becoming Emmaline and staying Frannie. The romance between Frannie and Asa was sweet and added another layer of tension as she courted Duncan alongside rekindling her feelings for Asa. Most of all, I enjoyed learning about the Culper Spy ring and their influence in the Revolutionary War. Through her spying, Frannie finds her spirit, purpose and identity. With an intriguing plot, in-depth characters and a heart-pounding ending, Rebel Spy amazingly recreates one of history's unknown women.
This book was received for free in return for an honest review.
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VERONICA ROSSI is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the UNDER THE NEVER SKY series. She was born in Rio de Janeiro, grew up in California, and graduated from UCLA. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband and two sons, one of whom just surpassed her in height. Find her online at veronicarossi.com or on Twitter at @rossibooks.