Book Review: Stateless by Elizabeth Wein

“I didn’t realize those vultures were going to see me as fresh meat until it was too late.”

Elizabeth Wein, Stateless

Title: Stateless
Author: Elizabeth Wein
Genres: Historical Fiction, Young Adult
Pages: 400 (Hardcover)
Published: March 14th, 2023

My Rating: ★★★★¾
Read: 4/21/2023 – 4/29/2023


Elizabeth Wein is one of the authors that I will automatically read without so much as glancing at the plot. Maybe I’m biased, but there’s something about the style of her stories that I thoroughly enjoy.

A couple of years before World War II, countries come together in the name of peace for a race against their young pilots. Stella North is chosen to represent Britain. Being the only female in the competition means her work is cut out for her, however, she isn’t fazed. That is until a series of strange and suspicious accidents begin to happen. Together with a couple of her fellow contestants, they try to get to the bottom of the misfortunes.

Code Name Verity is one of my all-time favorite books/series so my expectations were definitely high. I enjoyed the story a lot, though I must admit not as much. The build-up takes up a good two-thirds of the book before really getting into the excitement. If I’m interpreting the author’s note correctly, it sounds like this will also be a series. If that is the case, I’m looking forward to the continuation.

Another thing that struck me as different in this book from the previous ones is that there seemed to be a heavier implication of romance. I can take or leave it, but I guess it sort of surprised me. The characters are wonderful though (as always) so I’m intrigued enough. This like the Code Name Verity series continues to stand out from other books in the historical fiction genre. It’s exciting, unique, and good-hearted. Looking forward to what comes next!

Likes & Dislikes:

What I liked:

  • The heavy focus on aviation. Elizabeth Wein is knowledgeable being a pilot herself.
  • Adorable characters. I instantly fell in love with Tony.
  • Though it’s set before WWII, the looming threat of war creates a fittingly tense atmosphere.

What I didn’t like:

  • It was a slow start. I wasn’t super invested until halfway through the story.
  • It left me wanting a sequel more out of curiosity than a deep attachment.


I feel bad because I know I spent so much time comparing this book to the Code Name Verity series. If Stateless becomes its own series, I hope I’ll now be able to separate the two going forward. I did enjoy this a lot.

Where to buy the book:

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