When her home is destroyed in the 1941 Luftwaffe bombing, Grace Ryan moves in with relatives. There she meets Barry Malone, a boy from Liverpool. Barry begins to suspect their teacher Mr Pawlek of spying for the Nazis. But what starts as an exciting adventure puts their very lives in danger.
When her home is destroyed in the Luftwaffe bombing of the North Strand, Dublin in 1941, Grace Ryan is forced to move in with relatives in a different part of the city. There she meets Barry Malone, an English boy sent to neutral Ireland to escape the terrible air raids on his native city of Liverpool.
Wary of each other at first, Grace and Barry become friends when she acts to stop him being bullied in his new school. Barry later saves Grace from losing her part-time job in a shop and, with school about to end, a summer of fun stretches before them in the sports club run by his teacher, Mr Pawlek.
However, Barry begins to suspect Mr Pawlek of spying for the Nazis and he enrols Grace in his attempts to find proof. But what starts as an exciting challenge becomes increasingly risky, and their friendship is put to the test when their very lives hang in the balance.
'will give readers insight into life during the Second World War and will appeal to readers of 10+ who enjoy mystery or historical fiction'
'deftly weaving historic fact and period detail into a fictional but nevertheless entirely credible story ... nail-biting'
'would hopefully encourage further study about the effects of war on ordinary people'
'heart-stopping action likely to hold readers aged nine to teens in its thrall'
'a turbulent historical backdrop based on carefully researched detail'
'thrilling novel is a window on the past'
'story of friendship and suspicion, excitement and intrigue'
'Secrets and Shadows is an exciting children's wartime adventure with lots of factual details and historical snippets to give it a good feel of time and place but without over-shadowing the plot… this should be a book to appeal to both boys and girls and
'a refreshing change to read a book set in Ireland during the war'
'had me gripped from the start'
'confident and reluctant readers will be richly rewarded by the truly gripping climax'
'between a historical novel and a spy caper'
Download Teaching Guides: Teaching guide to the book by Peter Heaney
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