Even after reading and enjoying both “Heist Society” books, (and on the edge of my seat for the third one, thank you) I was reluctant to start Ally Carter’s Gallagher Girls series. They sounded really, well, corny. But facing a long daily commute will change a girl, so I checked out the first audiobook from the library … and then quickly the whole series. Sure, the titles “Only the Good Spy Young” are a little puny, but the story (told over five books so far) are full of Carter’s gift for action and suspense, good twists, mysterious boys and relatable girls.
I love that Cammie is developing through the books. In the first one, she was naive and, yes, corny. But she grows stronger and more confident as the danger becomes more real. She’s also not indestructible. She gets bruised and hurt … a lot.
The narrative is done in Cammie’s often sarcastic voice, which at times is a little heavy-handed, and sometimes given to repeating information. Like she knows 17 languages, and doesn’t let you forget it. Or how easily she can disarm a man with a body part/piece of clothing/cosmetic. But her rolling emotions and spy-breed instincts are clever and true.
Her own Scooby crew of fellow spy-school sisters are fantastic and supportive. I love the depth Macey and Bex have shown through the series. Then there are the boys; Zach and Heist Society’s Hale are cut from the same cloth. Boy-next-door Josh is adorable and clueless.
Lastly, as an adult reader of the books, I’m digging the subtle things going on with the adults. Cammie’s mother Rachel is an ex-spy and headmistress. She’s also still mourning the death of her husband. Her sister comes into play and there’s a whole history there they don’t get into, and there’s something fishy going on with that handsome new professor Mr. Solomon. Carter gives us just enough to sketch in the rest.
Just like the girls of the Gallagher Academy, don’t underestimate this fun series.