This book is my favorite book of all time. You should see my copy– you can turn to any page, and it’ll just lay flat, because the spine has been cracked so many times. There’s even a questionable substance that got stuck between two pages (I’m pretty sure it’s the remnants of an M&M).
Anyways, enough about the gross stuff you find stuck between the pages of a book. Let’s talk about why I love (and have mangled) this book so much.
First, I enjoyed it as a young adult. It tells the story of a girl who goes to a spy school, but of course, everyone thinks it’s just a school for elite heiresses. Then, she meets an ordinary boy in the town where her school is, and, having no experience with men, must use her training as a spy to keep her cover, and her cool. The story is full of witty little side comments. Cammie plays off her life as a spy, talking about her PHD-level chemistry homework as if it was as normal as what other high school kids were studying. The great thing about this book, however, and the things that stick with me every time I read it, are the little comments where Cammie compares being a spy to something everyone experiences, like grief, heartbreak, or being in love. The book has an equal amount of seriousness and fun.
The reason I still love it now is because it’s so different than most YA books. Cammie is special, but not a “Chosen One” kind of special. Her reputation comes from her family, like many people who might read the book. She’s not a lovestruck, head-over-heels teenager. When she makes a bad decision, she knows she made a bad decision, because she’s been trained not to. Her entire way of thinking is based on the tactics she learned at “spy school.” It’s a nice change from most books completely focused on love triangles or destiny.
I would recommend this book to anyone. I even convinced the neighborhood book club. If you’re looking for a quick, fun read, without all the drama of a typical YA novel, this is a pretty good bet. I will warn you; this is the first of a 6-book series. Hey, if you’re going to start with one, you might as well go all the way. The rest of the books are just as witty, fun, and thrilling as this one.