Tuesday 24 June 2014

Book Review - Only The Good Spy Young

Only The Good Spy Young
Author: Ally Carter
Series: Gallagher Girls #4
Genres: Mystery, Contemporary | Young Adult
Release Date: May 2009
Publishers: Orchard Books
No. Pages: 304
Source: Purchased
Buy From: Amazon | Book Depository | Barnes and Noble | Waterstones
When Cammie Morgan enrolled at the Gallagher Academy, she knew she was preparing for the dangerous life of a spy. What she didn't know was that the serious, real-life danger would start during her junior year of high school. But that's exactly what happened two months ago when Cammie faced off against an ancient terrorist organization dead set on kidnapping her.

Now the danger follows her everywhere, and even Cammie 'The Chameleon' can't hide. When a terrifying encounter in London reveals that one of her most-trusted allies is actually a rogue double-agent, Cammie no longer knows if she can trust her classmates, her teachers - or even her own heart.

The following review may contain spoilers concerning earlier books in the series.
If you have not read the previous installments, please proceed with caution.

Somewhere along the line, I told you The Gallagher Girls series was a light-hearted, fun-loving book about a group of friends who learn how to be amazing spies, go on secret missions and suffer from boy trouble.. it makes me sad to have to retract that statement. The Gallagher Girls series is no long a fun-loving, light-hearted series about girls becoming spies and suffering from boy trouble; Only The Good Spy Young made sure that I could never undersell this series every again, because this series suddenly became so much bigger and better than I ever could have imagined. It became real, and that made it frightening..

After trying to get over the emotional turmoil Don't Judge A Girl By Her Cover left me with, I realised I most definitely wasn't ready to find out that one of my most loved characters in the series was supposedly a rouge agent, a traitor, someone who had touched my heart and was ready to tear it out and boy did Carter manage to do that. Not only did she choose the perfect character to make readers turn to dislike, but she made sure there were answers and possibilities that meant readers were either 'yes they are a traitor' or 'no, they wouldn't do that' and I was most definitely on the 'no, they wouldn't do that' side, no matter what evidence was presented to me, and it helped me connect and relate to other characters involved in the story, not to mention it made me hate and dislike others. The rest of the plot in Only The Good Spy Young was just as exciting, the outside world played a bigger and more dangerous part in the girls lives and missions, and outside authorities were much more involved in their lives, both positively and negatively. Even Cammie's relationship with her friends, with Zach and her own family became strained as she put her faith in her spy methods and her hunches and nothing in the previous three books could have prepared me for the speed and and breath-taking action involved in this story, as well as the development Cammie and the girls, in fact, even Zach, Rachel and Abby went through, and the things Zach and Mr Soloman would do for the sake of Cammie really hit me. In fact, I've really taken a shining to Zach, and while I don't see much in terms in romance between him and Cammie, he is a fantastic character and really adds a little something to an all girls world. All of the relationships in this book were utterly beautiful, and the plot was just as brilliant too, if not better than the previous books plots.

For me, it was the simplest details in this installment that made this book close to perfect. The real danger involved in the plot was the real world and real life and how they're lives were constantly put at risk, not only outside of Gallagher Academy, but inside too. It was never and still isn't clear who the real enemy is, who to trust and who to put your faith in, and the revelations that came to light were enough to spend my head spinning; the story about Mr Soloman and Cammie's father, the truth about Blackthorne and the nature of their training and who exactly Zach is, where he comes from and what he has to, or not lose as the case might be. Other details I enjoyed were Cammie's strong-willed attitude, the introduction and inclusion of characters with a higher status, and the constant subtle humour and jokes that Carter includes to remind the reader that this is still the same series it was three books ago, it's just developed, changed, been remolded and taken a darker, more dangerous, more twisted and untrustworthy turn. Somewhere along the line it wasn't as enjoyable as the previous too, but it was still a fantastic installment.

Only The Good Spy Young took everything I thought I loved, thought I knew and felt comfortable with in the this series and turned it on it's head. Carter gave me answers to some of the biggest questions I had, but also gave me many more questions to add to the collection, and while I might not agree with Cammie's decision in the final chapter on this book, I can understand why she made that choice. Cammie is one of my favourite characters on my bookshelves; she always puts others before herself, takes care and pays attention to detail, but most of all, she always follows her heart, and in a world that's changing and proving that her spy skills and quick thinking might not be enough to get her through the day. The real world is a dangerous place, people get hurt, people vanish and people die and it's a real wake up call for the characters in this series, and for me. The Gallagher Girls is changing, but it's always delivering in action, in relatable characters and in style; I couldn't recommend it more.


  1. NEED TO CONTINUE! NEED TO CONTINUE!! NEED TO CONTINUE!!! I say this every time and I still haven't gotten to these!!! But, I really need too because I want to see how serious this series gets. I only remember the light-hearted, fun side to the series so I want to get to the books where it becomes more serious.

    1. Yes you do! Oh my days does it get much darker, more serious and the girls put their skills to the test big time, their mental and physical pushes, their capabilities and their friendships, oh my lordy, please please continue it! :D


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