Friday, January 25, 2013

Flashback Friday: I'd Tell You I Love You, But Then I'd Have to Kill You

Cammie Morgan is a student at the Gallagher Academy for Exceptional Young Women, a fairly typical all-girls school-that is, if every school taught advanced martial arts in PE and the latest in chemical warfare in science, and students received extra credit for breaking CIA codes in computer class. The Gallagher Academy might claim to be a school for geniuses but it's really a school for spies. Even though Cammie is fluent in fourteen languages and capable of killing a man in seven different ways, she has no idea what to do when she meets an ordinary boy who thinks she's an ordinary girl. Sure, she can tap his phone, hack into his computer, or track him through town with the skill of a real "pavement artist"-but can she maneuver a relationship with someone who can never know the truth about her? 

Cammie Morgan may be an elite spy-in-training, but in her sophomore year, she's on her most dangerous mission---falling in love. Quoted from Goodreads


With the recent release of Double Crossed, the Gallagher Girls/Heist Society crossover novella, which I'm currently reading (okay, so I'm on page 2, but still . . .), I thought today would be an excellent day to review Ally Carter's first Gallagher Girl's book, I'd Tell You I Love You, But Then I'd Have to Kill You.

This series is absolutely delightful.  It's light, funny, and exciting all at the same time.  To be honest, this is probably my least favorite book in the series. It's not that it doesn't have a great premise or does an excellent job of introducing you to the characters.  It does.  It just doesn't have the same element of epic spyness that the subsequent books have.  It's a little bit lighter, focused more on boys than other, bigger problems that crop up later.  Don't get me wrong, it's still an excellent way to introduce the series, I just want you to know it gets better and better with each new book, and the problems they face are a little less fluffy.  

First there are amazing characters.  I love Cammie, Bex, Liz, and Macey, and their (eventual) strong friendship.  Too often there is only one girl sidekick as a friend, and a bunch of mean, fake girls that provide the "conflict".  Not true in this book.  Each character is unique and fleshed out, bringing their own brand of fun and loyalty to the story.

Cammie is a second generation spy, nicknamed the "chameleon," who lives year round at an all girls spy school or on her grandparent's farm. Basically, she is clueless about boys, in an adorable way, so when she meets Josh, a boy who really sees her, she tackles her crush the only way she knows how: like a spy.   This book cracks me up.  We get some great moments, such as Cammie and her friends going through Josh's garbage to see what he likes, because while they are fluent in dozens of different languages, they don't begin to speak boy.

Mixed in with all this is some interesting spy training and some secrets about Gallagher Academy, which promise to become more in later books. Really, the school itself is sort of a character, much like Hogwarts for Harry Potter.  It helps define the characters lives, is full of secrets (including tunnels and rooms), and teachers that may be either good or evil.

Yes, this book is geared towards younger teens, but I still found it to be a blast.  It is a quirky 3.5 stars for me.  If you want an adorable, light read, full of fun characters and laughs, pick this up.  The first 5 books are already out, and the sixth (and possibly final) one comes out this year, so get reading!

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