Monday, December 27, 2010

Review of Don't Judge A Girl By Her Cover by Ally Carter

Don't Judge A Girl By Her Cover is the third book in the Gallagher Girls series, so this review will, of course, contain spoilers for the first two books. Proceed with caution.

When Cammie visits her roommate and friend, Macey, in Boston, where her father's being nominated for vice president, she expects an exciting end to summer break. Excitement she gets, when she and Macey find themselves in a kidnapper's plot.

Luckily, escaping is just one the things they do best, as students of the Gallagher Academy For Exceptional Young Women - a spy school in disguise. But soon they find out that it isn't over yet, and as more attempts are made, they wonder if Macey was the real target.

Like the Gallagher Girls book before it, Don't Judge A Girl By Her Cover was fast-faced and fun to read. Written in a no-nonsense prose, there was constant action and mystery, and was completely captivating - so much so that I read it on Christmas morning.

There aren't a lot of spy books out there targeted to a young adult audience, and this series is the only I've read in the genre, but it's enough to make me want to branch out and find more books like it. A boarding school full of female spies-in-training - a premise so unique and exciting you can't help but pick it up.

Cammie is a strong, clever and loyal protagonist. She spends the majority of this book trying to protect her friend without a second thought, outsmarting secret agents, and unraveling mysteries. Though, in spite of all that, she's relatable. She worries about her friends, she has boy trouble, and misses her dead father. She's a dynamic protagonist that you can't help but feel endeared and sympathetic to.

The plot was cleverly constructed, with problems from past books weaved into the story and with new ones arising. It was at all times unpredictable - every time I think I can guess what's about to happen, something else entirely occurs.

The romance between Zach and Cammie was mysterious and compelling. The broody, mysterious stock character that always weasels his way into paranormal romances can't hold a flame to the enigma that is Zach. I mean, he's a spy. His intentions throughout the book aren't clear, but he still feels trustworthy.

I give Don't Judge A Girl By Her Cover 4 out of 5, and intend to the the next (already released) book in the series, Only The Good Spy Young, soon.