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Shadow on the Mountain
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Shadow on the Mountain

3.82 of 5 stars 3.82  ·  rating details  ·  727 ratings  ·  184 reviews
Shadow on the Mountain recounts the adventures of a 14-year-old Norwegian boy named Espen during World War II. After Nazi Germany invades and occupies Norway, Espen and his friends are swept up in the Norwegian resistance movement. Espen gets his start by delivering illegal newspapers, then graduates to the role of courier and finally becomes a spy, dodging the Gestapo alo ...more
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published September 1st 2012 by Harry N. Abrams
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Khalid Halabi
In “Shadow on the Mountain”, a Norwegian boy named Espen wants to help drive away the Nazis from Norway. The book begins with Espen, a fourteen-year-old boy, riding his bicycle to deliver some illegal newspapers. He delivers the newspapers to an old woman who is called “Tante Marie”. The woman finds out that this is Espen’s first mission for the Norwegian resistance, and tells him to make a code name. When Espen decides his code name, the woman tells Espen of the atrocities happening in Norway. ...more
I did enjoy reading this book. Some parts were very intense, which set the tone for the whole book. You were constantly worried about Espen, and what was going to happen next. Espen was a WW2 spy, and delivered messages, ad illegal newspapers. Just about anything could get you arrested at this time in history, and if Espen gets caught, he could ruin his family's life. In fact, everyone in his family is doing something to help the Norwegian resistance movement, no matter how small.

I really enjoy
Penny Peck
A real page-turner, this historical fiction tween novel is based on the true story of teen resistance fighters in Norway in World War II. Espen and his sister Ingrid do small things to combat the Nazi invasion of Norway, from giving potatoes to political prisoners, to delivering secret papers. Most people (adults and children) don't know about Norway's role in the war - their country was quickly overrun by Nazis yet many Norwegians joined the underground, blew up facilities related to bomb produ ...more
I should add the CD version for this, because I did listen to the audiobook. Very intriguing book that makes you think, "Why didn't I know about this before?" This would make an interesting companion book for Steve Sheinkin's nonfiction book Bomb. Before these two books, I'm embarrassed to admit that I did not know much about Norway's occupation and the resistance movement. There are many brave characters in the book, and I really appreciated the research Preus did, and the extensive notes with ...more
Nov 30, 2012 Beverly rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: 11-14 year olds
Recommended to Beverly by: Best Books for Young Adults/
There has been such a plethora of outstanding YA histoical fiction the last few years, including Margi Preus' Heart of a Samurai, that I had high hopes for Shadow on the Mountain. It did not live up to my expectations. It was okay, but not particularly memorable. There were some great elements such as the conversations between Espen and one of his best friends who is working with the Nazis. Both boys feel strongly that they are doing what is best for Norway. Their conversations provide some pers ...more
This book was SOOOOOOOOO good. I couldn't put it down at all. I especially liked how there was a lot of action and suspense. It was nerve-racking at some parts, however, when the Gestapo were too close to the truth. I especially liked Espen when he found ways to outwit the Nazi soldiers. In general, it was a great book that everyone must read.
Mary Aalgaard
Shadow on the Mountain takes place during WWII in Norway. The Nazis have occupied the country, and everyone's life has changed. Espen is 14-years-old when the Nazis first arrive. He plays soccer with his schoolmates and he's in the Boy Scouts. Soon, his scout uniform is confiscated by the Gestapo and soccer games are a thing of the past. Now, he uses his skills to carry secret papers and messages, on skis, bicycle, on foot, or by train. He risks much to fight for justice. Margi Preus based this ...more
Mary Farrell
Margi Preus is a beautiful writer and this is a beautiful book. It was very interesting to read about the Nazi occupation of Norway, which I had not done since "Snow Treasure" one of my favorite books as a child. Espen, the main character is an unlikely hero who risks his life for what he believes is right. The story is quiet compared to many books out there today and I'm happy to see the range of choices for kids expand to include a book like this. It has depth and will be treasured by serious ...more
Aug 03, 2014 Grace rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: wwii
The book is about Norway under the Nazi occupation, told from the perspective of a teenage boy who works for the resistance. Some of the situations were confusing, such as how the soccer team morphed into a resistance cell and made contact with the right people. The main character,Espen, is likeable in how he works hard and volunteers to help the cause, but is also very scared. He shows that you can be brave but frightened at the same time. I think boys reading this book would identify with him ...more
Katie Levin
Shadow on the Mountain tells the story of a young boy named Espen who lives in Norway during the time of World War II. During the story, Germany invades Norway and the town Espen grew up in is soon taken over by Nazi soldiers. Espen joins the resistance with some of his friends and is first asked to deliver anti-Nazi newspapers to specific houses. He is then asked to perform more top-secret tasks like delivering certain items and mapping out an entire Nazi Prisoner of War Camp. Espen goes throug ...more
Jordyn Oakland
Margi Preus’s novel Shadow on the mountain: A novel inspired by the true adventures of a wartime spy takes place during World War II after Nazi Germany invaded Norway. The events taken place in the book are based on the young 14-year-old Norwegian boy, Erling Sorrusten, who is portrayed by Espen. After watching his country being destroyed by Nazi Germany, Espen joins the resistance as a courier by carrying illegal newspapers and becomes one of the most trusted members. Espen encounters many hard ...more
This was a fun adventure/spy novel about a young boy determined to fight the Nazi's occupation of Norway during World War II. I gave it 4 stars because I didn't feel the emotional side of how tragic the circumstances are through Espen. Ingrid, Espen's little sister, displays the tragedy and heart-wrenching circumstances better than the protagonist and she wasn't in the book enough for my liking. Her quiet rebellions were awesome and very human, in my opinion.

Aside from the emotional aspect, Esp
Madison Young
Shadow on the Mountain tells the story of a young boy named Espen who lives in Norway during the time of World War II. During the story, Germany invades Norway and the town Espen grew up in is soon filled with Nazi soldiers. Espen and his group of friends decide to join the Nazi Resistance, promising to do anything they can to stop the invasion. First Espen is asked to deliver anti-Nazi newspapers to specific houses. As time goes on, he is asked to perform more top-secret tasks such as deliverin ...more
Carl Nelson
Very interesting young adult novel based on real events of German-occupied Norway during World War II. Exciting older YA read with fast-paced action and lots of hair-raising narrow escapes. Does not shirk from showing wartime deeds, but they are written so as to be accessible to the intended audience. Recommend for readers interested in historical fiction.
A young-adult novel from a Duluth author about a young Nazi-resistance fighter in Norway. This is based on a true story and the action really keeps the story moving. It has nice, short chapters and at least I didn't know about this Norwegian history and expect that the story will be fresh for young people, too. Now just to get my son to read it!
Jeremy Segal
In the book Shadow on the Mountain by Margi Preus, a teenager in Norway decides retaliate against the German occupation of the country. Espen spies for the Norwegian resistance, and helps distribute forbidden objects such as radios with his friends. Soon though Espen’s adventures get more dangerous as friends start to help the Nazis control the people. Espen’s final mission entails mapping out the Nazis base in his hometown, but he is recognized walking back from the base, so he must move to Swe ...more
Won the Judy Lopez 2013 Honor Book Award this June and is a fascinating look at the 5 years of Norway's resistance movement, having been invaded by Nazi Germany. Based on the real-life adventures of a Norwegian spy during World War II. The author's talk and slide show at the awards dinner was riveting as is the book!
Annie Oosterwyk
This historical fiction novel is based on the true story of a Norwegian boy who joined the resistance when the Nazi's invaded. Throughout the book I was impressed by the author's writing, her well formed characters and the tension she created with the events of the plot. I honestly could not guess whether or not this story would end well for the hero.
This story showed how some Norwegians worked against their own friends and neighbors to support the Nazis and why they might do so. The author als
Shelby Zimmerman
This book is about a Norweigen boy named Espen who is a spy during World War II. He begins by delivering illegal newspapers but then becomes a spy. This book really shows the role Norway had with Nazi invasion. It gives readers the experience of a teen resistance fighter in the war. Overall, I found this book to be pretty well-written. It kept me intrigued with the tension of what was going to happen to Epsen. It seems like the whole book the reader is made to worry about what is going to happen ...more
One Sentence Review: Expertly done (which you would just naturally assume from the Newbery Honor winning author) though it lacks that extra little oomph it needs to stay memorable over time.
When the Nazis occupied Norway, they expected to be welcomed with open arms. The Norwegians were the Aryan ideal: tall, blond, and blue-eyed, but they were strangely resistant to being taken over by the Nazis... Almost immediately the most organized WWII resistance efforts began, with resistance organized into three branches: the civilians, military, and intelligence. Preus' book is based on the true story of a young teen who started as a courier carrying illegal newspapers and ended by being ar ...more
Ellen Ramsey
A fascinating and emotionally engaging adventure story. As Espen and others who are part of Norway's underground resistance battle the Nazis, Espen grows up and discovers the things that are really important to him. Normally, I avoid books about WWII, but this book had such a strong protagonist and is so well-written that I was hooked early on. The historical details that Preus includes and the "afterword" information (a timeline, bibliography, and photographs of Erling Storrusten, whose experie ...more
Evelyn Denherder
This is a well written Historical Book about Norway during WWII when the Germans were occupying the country.

The Norwegian youth of the story, girls and boys, are involved in secretly delivering documents etc. under the noses of the Germans. They often travel by skis and some of their friends are joining the Germans.

A suspenseful and enjoyable read that gives one an understanding of how difficult it was to live under occupation.

The characters are very likable and I can almost imagine being back i
Emily Scheinman
Strongest historical fiction title I've read so far this year.
I really enjoyed reading this book. Based on true events and indivduals I was hooked from begining to end. I would recommend this book to middle school readers and above. Anyone interested in WWII would enjoy this story. Set in Norway during the Second World War a young man does what he can, with family and friends, to disrupt what the Nazis are trying to accomplish in their country. I learned a lot in reading this piece of fiction and now want to read more on this particular subject matter. It ...more
I thought the basic premise of this--Norwegian spies and resistance workers during the Nazi regime--was really interesting. It also did a good job of looking at why some people worked with the Nazis instead of fighting them. But overall, I found a lot of the dialogue quite stilted and the characterizations to be a bit shallow. Despite such a fascinating topic (based on an actual spy), I was never sucked into the story the way I wanted to be. It's not a bad book by any means, it just wasn't a boo ...more
Mr. Turner
Recently I read the book, Bomb, by Steve Sheinkin. There was a chapter in the book about the Norwegians resistance to the Nazis during WWII. It was a fascinating chapter regarding a nation I knew very little about. I was intrigued, to say the least, as I read the chapter the read very much like an action-packed movie. That chapter spurred me to read Shadow on the Mountain. Although it did not mention the activities written about in Bomb, it was a compelling historical fiction piece based on one ...more
Margi Preus has a certain style about her historical fiction, and it works quite well. Shadow on the Mountain is more than just historical fiction, though; it is a true story, somewhat fictionalized to allow the real-life elements to fit into the structure of a well-written narrative. But the essence of the story—the life of a patriotic Norwegian teen determined to usurp the Nazi menace that has crept over his homeland in the early 1940s like a blinding, deadly storm cloud—is completely intact, ...more
Ms. Yingling
When the Nazis invade Norway, Espen decides to join the Resistance movement and is frequently called on to carry messages. While the privations of war are never as terrible as they are in some places, the Nazis infiltrate every aspect of life, and the Norwegians never let up in their opposition to them. Very few Norwegians, including a boyhood friend of Espen's, join with the Nazis, because they fear the Russians more, but in general, the Norwegians do everything they can to irk the Nazis. Espen ...more
Emmet O'Neal Library- Children's Department
Espen is fourteen years old when Hitler's army invades his country of Norway and gradually imposes restrictions on his people. Realizing the terrible world they will live in with Hitler at the helm, Espen and several of his friends begin involving themselves in secret resistance missions. Meanwhile, his best friend has joined the Norwegian Nazis. The war progresses, and Espen's jobs become more significant, his involvement more complex, his knowledge more dangerous. As he struggles to make decis ...more
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