The Wreck of the Argyll by John K. Fulton takes us back to the time of the First World War where everybody’s lives are unavoidably changed by the conflict. It opens with our heroine Nancy who is frustrated that she is unable to find a way to contribute to the war effort unlike the rest of her family. So when Nancy suspects her teacher is a German spy she embarks on a dangerous mission with the help of a homeless boy Jamie to uncover the truth and protect her country from an imminent deadly plot. We are also introduced to Midshipman Harry Melville who is on his first voyage aboard HMS Argyll and has no idea that his fate and the rest of the crew are inextricably bound with Nancy and her quest for the truth.
What I really enjoyed about this story is that you are immediately drawn into the action as it opens with Nancy trailing her teacher late at night with no apparent thought for her own well being. She is so patriotic and passionate about what she is trying to achieve and when she meets Jamie he has no option but to be drawn into her plans. When their suspicions are confirmed and they find out that nobody can be trusted they find themselves forced to try and track down the enemy themselves.
On board the HMS Argyll, the crew are unaware that there are more dangers ahead beside navigating a safe course to Rosyth. John perfectly captures the mood on board as they struggle against the sea and you can feel the tension of the crew throughout the book. The reader is obviously aware that the ship is sailing towards danger and that a disaster is looming ahead. For the reader this is really compelling and keeps you turning the pages desperate to know their fate.
This was a enjoyable read which I found really difficult to put down. It has the perfect mix of brave children, dastardly villains and a totally dramatic but believable plot. I already know who I will be recommending it to at my school and I know that they will be thoroughly entertained by this story.