Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Book Review: Don't Judge A Girl by Her Cover by Ally Carter


When Cammie “The Chameleon” Morgan visits her roommate Macey in Boston, she thinks she’s in for an exciting end to her summer break. After all, she’s there to watch Macey’s father accept the nomination for vice president of the United States. But when you go to the world’s best school (for spies), “exciting” and “deadly” are never far apart. Cammie and Macey soon find themselves trapped in a kidnappers’ plot, with only their espionage skills to save them.

As her junior year begins, Cammie can’t shake the memory of what happened in Boston, and even the Gallagher Academy for Exceptional Young Women doesn’t feel like the safe haven it once did. Shocking secrets and old flames seem to lurk around every one of the mansion’s corners as Cammie and her friends struggle to answer the questions, Who is after Macey? And how can the Gallagher Girls keep her safe?

Soon Cammie is joining Bex and Liz as Macey’s private security team on the campaign trail. The girls must use their spy training at every turn as the stakes are raised, and Cammie gets closer and closer to the shocking truth….


While still keeping with the overall light and fun air of the previous two books, Don't Judge a Girl by Her Cover adds a new intensity and danger to the Gallagher Girls. Jumping into the action and plot quickly, there is a noticeable shift in atmosphere throughout this book as a result of the foiled kidnapping attempt.

Cammie goes through a striking amount of growth and change as this installment progresses, getting a gutting first hand look at the dangers of the spy life. Her worry over Macey's safety and mental health strengthen her character, also solidifying the fact that despite her rough introduction, Macey is now as good a friend to Cammie as Bex and Liz have been. Cammie continues to break the rules in this book, finding continual justifications for it that tend to center around ensuring Macey is protected as she travels with her parents for her father's political campaign in his pursuit of vice president.

Macey takes a stronger role in this book and much of the events center around her. She shows several different sides, each one well developed and understandable. She loses some of her sass as a result of the events, softening her character and making her more sympathetic with the reader.

The plot adds some new levels to the series as a whole, providing great strides for the characters in personal growth. A bold, new character is introduced and a character from the first books is brought back to add to the mystery. Even at the close of this installment, one character in particular continues to remain illusive and mysterious. The plot, as a whole, is enjoyable with some suspense and generally engaging.

Carter's writing still gives Cammie a strong voice and distinct mindset, and her spy world still continues to surprise the reader with new additions and more background. The setting and world is built as strongly as the characters, and both aspects are blended smoothly. Overall, Don't Judge a Girl by Her Cover is a great addition to the Gallagher Girls set and while it ties most things up, there are still a few lingering questions to push the reader to the next book.

Source: Purchased
Reading level: Young Adult
Paperback: 288 pages
Publisher: Hyperion Book CH; Reprint edition (May 18, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1423116607
ISBN-13: 978-1423116608


  1. I still need to read this series, though your reviews make me want to read them all the more. Awesome review! :)