Ben Ripley may only be in middle school, but he’s already pegged his dream job: C.I.A. or bust. Unfortunately for him, his personality doesn’t exactly scream “secret agent.” In fact, Ben is so awkward, he can barely get to school and back without a mishap. Because of his innate math skills, Ben isn’t surprised when he is recruited for a magnet school with a focus on science—but he’s entirely shocked to discover that the school is actually a front for a junior C.I.A. academy. Could the C.I.A. really want him?
Actually, no. There’s been a case of mistaken identity—but that doesn’t stop Ben from trying to morph into a supercool undercover agent, the kind that always gets the girl. And through a series of hilarious misadventures, Ben realizes he might actually be a halfway decent spy…if he can survive all the attempts being made on his life!
I actually liked this book. I wasn’t sure if I would, because of the cheesy name, and the synopsis didn’t really give me a convincing reason to stay, but…you guessed it. The cover.
I ended up enjoying this story. 3.8 stars. It had a rough pattern where I was interested, not interested, interested, interested, noooooot interreeesstted and then finally, interested. Not sure how I really feel about how Stuart Gibbs writes, but he got the story down, wrote it with proper grammar and the prose was interesting. I’m satisfied.
The only thing for me was that there was some pretty useless cussing in this book. Maybe I’m just being a ninny and nit-picking, but cussing can be funny and/or show how serious the situation is if you use it at the right time, in the right situation, in the right place and in the right way. Stuart Gibbs didn’t fulfill any of that. Besides, this book would’ve been pretty good for younger readers if that wasn’t there. (Just FYI, it’s four cuss words). I’m just sayin’ guys, kids learn it somewhere, and this paragraph is here for the parents who would appreciate knowing ahead of time because they don’t want their kid learning it from this book.
This book has a little violence in it, that was some good action for me right when I was getting bored. I appreciated that, so that was a plus for me. The violence was a little cartoonish, but it was okay and I think it would be fine for younger readers. The romance seemed crafted towards boys and wasn’t really big in any way, which I didn’t mind. The book itself was great, and it kept me amused. Good story. Recommended for boys 8-12.
pg count for the hardcover: 291
Sequel: Spy Camp
Note: Spy Camp is by Stuart Gibbs, and it’s about the same characters in the same spy setting as Spy School, so I just put it down as the sequel. I didn’t find a name for the series, so that’s why it isn’t here. If anyone figures out the series name, I’d appreciate it if you commented on it.
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