Don't Judge a Girl by Her Cover by Ally Carter
Release: June 9, 2009
“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’d there the watch Macey’s father accept a 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 find themselves trapped in a kidnapper’s dangerous 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 they 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…”
Ally Carter’s latest installment in the Gallagher Girls series, Don’t Judge a Girl by Her Cover, was phenomenal. It is absolutely the best book of the series so far, and I anticipate many more great books in the future.
What I’ve always enjoyed about the series is the fun upbeat flair that Carter lends to the business of being a spy. The books aren’t centered around one mission, as many spy book are, rather the mission is seamlessly incorporated into the book. While you read you feel as if you are watching Cammie’s life, going through every step with her, and seeing the mission develop. Not following a set of directions laid down by a director. Carter blends the challenges of a teen’s life with those of a spy in training to create an enthralling read.
As much as I’d like to claim I knew what was going on the whole time, the truth is that Carter had me stumped. Every twist was a surprise and she kept me guessing the whole way. The suspense of never knowing what the next page would bring and the shocking discoveries had me reading at every chance I could get.
The best part of this book however, was that it was unlike its two predecessors. The first two books were lighter, focused more around Cammie’s life and how being a spy affected what a “normal” teen’s life should be. And while the theme was carried over into book three, the plot was heightened. The dangers that Cammie faced in the previous two books never seemed completely real. Sure I was on the edge of my seat, but at the same time I knew that it was a test. She was in danger, but the teachers were the people behind it and she therefore couldn’t get into too much danger. But in this book the staged danger and training ends. The danger is real, the enemy is real, and the secrets are darker and more complex than ever. If Cammie is going to survive she’ll need to use everything she’s learned.
Another highlight of the book was the examination of the Gallagher Girl’s sisterhood and what it truly means to be a sister. Whether it’s blood relation, friendship or school loyalty that makes you a sister, it is all the same. And in this book Carter looks into the complex relationships that make up a sisterhood.
Then there is the ending. In true Gallagher Girl fashion, the end of the book has you on the edge of your seat wanting more. Carter leaves the plot wide open and the stage set for another heart pounding book full of secrets and truths, in what I can imagine will be Cammie’s most dangerous mission yet. The next book in the series can’t come fast enough.
P.S. Don’t worry Ally, you’ve made your fans happy once again. This book is going to be a hit!