Friday, May 4, 2012

Cross My Heart and Hope to Spy by Ally Carter

Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Pages: 236
Series or Stand Alone: Book Two in the Gallagher Girls series
Summary: Cammie Morgan is back, and it's clear that her life hasn't calmed down since the events of I'd Tell You I Love You, But Then I'd Have to Kill You. At first, giddy anticipation is in the air. Gallagher Academy, Cammie's elite spy school, is hosting a visit from a covert training center for boys. Soon after the boys' arrival, though, everything goes dangerously awry when a series of security breaches are discovered at the academy. Worse yet, teenage agent-in-training Cammie is being blamed for the penetration. With the school's top-secret status at risk, the Gallagher Girls have to work quickly to save their beloved school.

Even though I was a little disappointed by the first installment of the Gallagher Girls series due to my extremely high expectations, I wanted to give the books another chance.
Cammie Morgan survived her first break up and managed not to get in too much trouble for breaking a thousand school rules in order to have that relationship in the first place. Now it’s time for a new challenge never before faced by Gallagher Girls: male classmates. While most of her classmates are spending time primping and flirting, Cammie is being driven crazy by Zach, a Blackthorne boy and one of the few people able to out-chameleon Cammie.
I definitely connected more with Cammie in this one! I can’t put my finger on it, but I just liked her more. I felt that the spy school environment was better utilized. This is particularly true in the scene where Cammie and her friends must attend a formal ball--but they must attend as completely different people with backstories they have to memorize. Totally neat concept and would only be an assignment at a spy school!
I thought that Cammie’s classmates had an entirely realistic reaction to suddenly being joined by boys at school. They may be teenage spies that can kill men double their size, but they’re also teenage girls. I liked that Carter included things like the girls skipping breakfast in order to concentrate on their looks. It was very true to having a female school suddenly coeducational.
Speaking of, Zach was SO much more interesting than Josh! I don’t enjoy judging a book on love interest alone, but if that were the case, the first book has NOTHING on Cross My Heart and Hope to Spy. Josh was so beige, but Zach has mystery and personality. There’s nothing I enjoy more than a love interest that at first enrages the protagonist using sass and wit.
There’s a bit of mystery in this one--Cammie’s mother is keeping some secrets that I certainly wanted to discover. Cross My Heart and Hope to Spy certainly surpassed I’d Tell You I Love You, But Then I’d Have to Kill You. It made me want to read more of Cammie’s story. On to the next tale!

Rating: 4 - good.

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