Thursday, 28 April 2011

Review: I'd Tell You I Love You, But Then I'd Have To Kill You by Ally Carter

Gallagher Academy might claim to be a school for geniuses - but it's really a school for spies. Cammie Morgan is fluent in fourteen languages and capable of killing a man in seven different ways (three of which involve a piece of uncooked spaghetti). But the one thing the Gallagher Academy hasn't prepared her for is what to do when she falls for an ordinary boy who thinks she's an ordinary girl. 
Sure, she can tap his phone, hack into his computer, and track him through a mall without his ever being the wiser, but can Cammie have a normal relationship with a boy who can never know the truth about her?

I am going to give you all a nice big warning now, that this review may contain copious amounts of CAPITALS which I may use to express my LOVE for this book. It also may be a tiny bit spoilery although I’ve tried to keep it as light as possible.

I have taken way too long to read this book. I am ashamed of myself. When it first came out I saw the blurb and the title and the agent, and I said to myself ‘that looks hysterical, I must henceforth to the book store and purchase a copy!’ But alas! I got swept up in silly things like university, and I didn’t do it.
And then my Mum rang me up and said, I have just seen this totally awesome book, and she described this book, and I went, ah yes, I have been meaning to buy it.
And then I was actually in the bookstore and this book fell off the shelf at me. 

And you know what? This book is GENIUS. No really – screw Hogwarts, I want to be a Gallagher Girl. Cos they are way cooler. And the classes! Oh man, I so want to go!

 So basically, this book is brilliant. I was laughing out loud pretty much every page. And when there was a sad bit and I didn’t laugh for a few pages, Ally made up for it by putting such funny bits in that I actually snorted. I think this may be the first book this year to claim to do that to me.

Cammie is amazing. She is this brilliantly witty and intelligent fifteen year old, who can pretty much do ANYTHING in the spying world, but when it comes to analysing the words a boy has said to her she is CLUELESS. And I loved this because I felt her pain. Every girl has been there. The oh my god what does this mean – how do I interpret this? WHAT DOES HE MEAN WHEN HE SAYS MAYBE SEE YOU AROUND? Most frustrating thing in the world for a boy to say.
Seriously, best female character ever. Ok well maybe not ever, I like my strong females, but she certainly ranks really, really high.

And her friends. I want friends like this. I mean I like my friends loads and all, but they can’t do half the things that Liz does with a computer! And Bex would totally be an awesome side kick for anything. I can imagine ANYTHING would be fun if you were doing it with Duchess and Bookworm…

And Josh… Oh good lord is he swoony and dream worthy, and he totally turned me into a fifteen year old girl again and made my insides go all mushy.
I love it.

It just works. The premise is genius, the characters are brilliant. It’s funny and poignant, and totally makes you feel like a dorky teenager again – only less brilliant than any of the characters. Although I wish I was that intelligent.

I love the entire set up, the school, the little quirks, code red, the ridiculous things that you see the teacher’s doing. Every little ridiculous moment where Cammie does an aside and you just go OH MY GOD THAT WAS GENIUS.
And it so totally takes me back to school, because I went to an all-girls school, but it was not nearly as cool as this, and the uniform was terrible. But it really captures the whole idea that boys are a completely alien species, and no one ever taught you how to talk to them… Or swoon worthy teachers either…

I’ve never read any of Ally Carter’s work before, and I am kicking myself for not reading her books sooner. But on the other hand, I totally needed a cheering up, and that book did it for me.
To the point that I am heading out of the house, with the shops only just opening in the morning, to go out and buy the rest of the books. And probably not sleep until I’ve read them too.

So next on my list is the second book in the series, “Cross My Heart and Hope To Spy.” Followed by “Don’t judge a Girl by her Cover.” And I have obviously picked the right moment to obsess, because the fourth book is out in a few days on May 5th “Only The Good Spy Young.”

I cannot recommend this book enough. I loved it, a quick brilliantly witty read, that I’m going to thrust at my Mum and go ‘OMG you were totally right, now read it and see how awesome it is!’ That’s right, I’m totally going to get my Mum to read a book about an all-girls spy school…

And then I’m going to go get the next books before the caffeine wears off…

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