Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Book Review: Only The Good Spy Young by Ally Carter

SUMMARY (From Amazon):

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.

In this fourth installment of the New York Times best-selling series, the Gallagher Girls must hack, spy, steal, and lie their way to the truth.as they go searching for answers, recognizing that the key to Cammie’s future may lie deep in the past.


As with the three books before this one, Only The Good Spy Young plays out at a steady pace, throws plenty of surprises at the reader, and ties the bulk of this specific plot up while still leaving lingering questions for future installments. Cammie and her friends are back, seemingly with more to lose than ever, and Carter throws some shocking hooks at the girls. Expanding on the world already steadily set up and building both the reader's and the girls' knowledge, Only The Good Spy Young if a fantastic installment in this spy series.

Cammie's character has been noticeably changed from the events of book three, and Carter carries that over to this set. While she isn't more cautious in the normal sense of the word, there is a clear difference in her way of thinking and world view. The change is handled perfectly, while still keeping Cammie as the same girl we met and loved in the first book. She still has her snarky moments, her confusion about the male species, and she still tests and breaks the rules to fit her needs.

Macie, Bex, and Liz are also a well blended mixture of their original selfs and the result of everything they've been through. The four girls together encounter some new events, some surprising news, and a big new mystery to try to figure out. Their characters continue to grow and change, and the reader gets to continue to find out more about all of these girls rather than a main focus only on Cammie.

The mystery surrounding Zach is as hot as ever, and while the reader does get a closer look into him, they seem to be left with even more questions at the end of the whirlwind events in this plot. Zach is very much a character that for every step forward you get, there are two to push you back, adding another bit of intrigue and spark to the book.

Again opening in a scene that thrusts the reader right into the action, the basic plot is set from the start and not closed out until the very end. Carter doesn't stray from the idea set out for this book, and though there were a few dragging times, it's understandable the girls would need some time to recuperate as they try to muddle through things.

Overall, Only The Good Spy Young holds the same cute, light air of the first three books, while still providing the great spy world Carter has so easily built and maintained. With likable and amusing characters, a very mystery boy, and a few unpredictable twists, Only The Good Spy Young is definitely fleshing this series out in a great way.

Source: Review copy received from Planned Television Arts
Reading level: Young Adult
Hardcover: 272 pages
Publisher: Hyperion Book CH; 1 edition (June 29, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1423128206
ISBN-13: 978-1423128205


  1. I just finished this last night and totally agree with your review. I couldn't have said it better myself. Spy books are a refreshing change in YA.

  2. Thanks for the review. It sounds great, and I love the title!

  3. I just picked this audiobook up at the library today. Glad to hear this one lives up to its predecessors.

    Also, I just finished Ally Carter's, THE HEIST SOCIETY a few days ago. That series promises to be even better than this one. IMO, anyway.