“Only the Good Spy Young” by Ally Carter
5 out of 5 stars.
Cameron Morgan has been spending her summer vacation with her good (and mischievous) friend Rebecca Baxter and Bex’s parents in London, England. Yes, this is the perfect (or very near perfect) way to spend a summer away from the Gallagher Girl Academy. But perfection is unattainable and Cammie has to learn this real life lesson the hard way.
Bex and Cammie are just strolling along the Thames, walking toward the Tower of London when HE, the vision of perfection, grabs Cammie from behind and pulls her into the shadows. Well, vision of perfection might not be the best usage of the English language, but Mr. Solomon is the PERFECT spy, and he is quite handsome, so we’ll stick with that description for the time being. Although Cammie is happy to see her Covert Operations teacher in London, she is confused as to why he is there. It is very unlike her teacher, but it seems to Cam that Mr. Solomon is not acting quite like himself, and for some odd reason he keeps telling her to “follow the pigeons”, and is making her promise to follow the seagulls (or whatever breed of birds they are). None of what he is saying makes any sense. To top it all off, Bex’s mother and father want Mr. Solomon to come with them, as if he is a bad guy, the bad guy Cammie has been running and hiding from all summer long. Mr. Solomon a bad guy? Cammie won’t believe it; she just can’t believe that her teacher, the BEST spy she knows could be on the wrong side, could have been on it the whole time she has known him. Cammie finds herself at an impasse, stuck in the middle of a fight she had never known existed, a war that was raging on right in front of her at this very moment in time. In just a few seconds she has to choose whether to believe that “follow the pigeons” is a code for something very important, or if it is just gibberish coming from a crazed, worn out man, a man who is no longer the perfect spy she had known only weeks ago. A person who is now suspected of being a traitor of the country he had once vowed to protect. No lecture on deductive reasoning could have ever prepared Cam for this moment on this bridge; she literally has to choose a side to stand on! But before Cammie can even come to a conclusion of her own, Mr. Solomon (just moments after delivering his message to her) jumps off of the bridge he and Cammie are standing on (quite gracefully, I might add) and plunges into the cold, dark water of the Thames.
Perfection is an illusion. It is a lie that someone tells another person in order to set up false expectations of the people you know, people you trusted with your life. Cammie is disillusioned after her encounter in London with not only Mr. Solomon, but also Zachary Goode. Both seem to have disappeared into thin air. And every piece of evidence that comes forward seems to point at Mr. Solomon being a traitor, an operative of the Circle of Cavan, who are a threat to national (and worldwide) safety and is the Gallagher Academy’s sworn enemy. Adding to Cammie’s numerous troubles is the fact that she had seen Zach AND Mr. Solomon together multiple times. Both are completely off of the grid, their appearances and disappearances coinciding with each others’ almost suspiciously so. Cammie doesn’t want to believe either of them could be traitors, but the facts are solid, the Academy’s theories of Mr. Solomon sound. Can Cammie and her friends figure out whether or not Mr. Solomon and Zach are working for the Circle of Cavan, or will they remain too far in the dark to stop the Circle (and everyone associated with them) from getting exactly what they came for?
“Only The Good Spy Young” by Ally Carter was really good. This one went even faster than the third book, and it had a deeper plot that I have a feeling will continue throughout the rest of the series. Cammie is also older in this book (obviously) and so the theme and plot of “Only the Good Spy Young” are far more mature than the other three books, and so that was really interesting to experience. There was a lot which changed in this book from “Don’t Judge a Girl by Her Cover”, but I think it was for the better, so I was not at all against those changes.
As usual the gang is back, and they are better than ever! Zachary Goode is also really good in this book and is in it a lot more than the other books, which meant I got to get to know him more. The more Zach unveils about himself, the more the secrets and the questions about who he really is just seem to build up; I hope that at the end of this series a lot of his super dark secrets will be revealed and resolved. There are quite a few to unearth when it comes to that boy, so I am not sure it is even possible for it all to get resolved because there is just so MUCH to “fix” in a manner of speaking. I’ll be honest, I don’t like lies, and lies do not make for a sturdy foundation in a relationship, so I hope that Cammie and Zach will be able to share their secrets with each other eventually instead of keeping them to themselves.; they seem to work better together when they clear the air, so to speak. I am not sure how that all is going to pan out, but I still have hope that at least some of the stuff will get resolved.
Overall, I liked “Only the Good Spy Young” the most so far in this series, and I am looking forward to the next installment in the “Gallagher Girl” series. Well done, Ally Carter, well done!