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Mirkat

Mirkat Always Reading

I'm always reading something, usually multiple books at a time.

Currently reading

Modern Romance
Aziz Ansari, Eric Klinenberg

The Trials of Spy School

I'd Tell You I Love You, But Then I'd Have to Kill You  - Ally Carter, Renée Raudman

This book had a cute premise.  While to outsiders, the Gallagher Academy for Exceptional Young Women seems like just another exclusive boarding school for snooty rich girls, in actuality it is a top-secret training ground for future spies (CIA, NSA, Interpol, etc.).  The girls learn cryptography in multiple languages, and "covert operations" is a normal part of the tenth-grade curriculum.  I'm a sucker for girl power, but ultimately the book seemed to be mostly wasted potential.

 

Cameron "Cammie" Morgan, our first-person narrator, is the daughter of the headmistress and a tenth-grader at the Gallagher Academy.  During a "cov-ops" class exercise, she meets a cute townie boy named Josh, and she faces the uncomfortable situation of having to lie to him about who she is and what she studies.  Her desire to date him while maintaining her cover story leads to various complications.

 

I was a bit on the fence as to whether to give this book three stars or 2.5, as I was enjoying the fluffy ride that it was.  But I think the ending is what pushed me down to 2.5 for this.  Spoiler tags for what I am about to say about that.

 

Cammie's mother ultimately reveals to Josh the truth about their academy, and Cammie is able to share with him her real story.  He is, of course, sworn to secrecy.  Cammie feels relieved that her mother doesn't seem to have given him the special tea that would wipe out his memory of what he's been told, leaving him with the vague notion that he's just had a weird dream.  But as he leaves, he asks Cammie to thank her mother for the tea.  ::headdesk::  So essentially, the book ends with a "reset" button.

(show spoiler)

 

Also, since I listened to this as an audiobook, I have a comment about the narration.  At first, I just found myself annoyed.  Those of you who share your homes with cats or dogs:  Do you ever do a special voice to demonstrate what the cat or dog would say about a given situation?  Imagine someone doing that for "teenage girl."  This was what Renee Raudman's performance of Cammie Morgan's voice felt like to me.  It's as if Raudman thought "what do adorable high-school sophomores sound like?"  There's a certain cutesy cartoonishness to the narration that I can't properly describe.  I almost bailed on this story for the narration alone.  I found, though, that if I sped up the recording slightly, the "cutesy" factor was mitigated somewhat.