Author: Jackson Pearce
Similar books: School for S.P.I.E.S. #1 Playing with Fire by Bruce Hale
NERDS: National Espionage, Rescue, and Defense Society by Michael Buckley
|a pretty fun read|
Summary: The Sub Rosa Society is all Hale has ever known. His parents have been SRS spies his entire life. Hale and his sister are training to become junior agents and it's all Hale has ever wanted. Of course, he's not your stereotypical spy. Unathletic, he has to work twice as hard as his fellow trainees. Then his parents disappear on a mission and SRS says they can't be rescued. It's up to Hale to infiltrate enemy headquarters and bring his parents home.
My Opinion: Hale is a great protagonist. Not only is he somewhat of a non-traditional hero (his mother calls him big-boned, the bullies call him fat), it's not luck or even his body type that allows him to succeed. It's a combination of his unique perspective and sheer determination. Simply put, Hale tries harder. He knows he can't compete physically so he finds his own work-arounds. While the plot is somewhat predictable, the quirky characters and great pacing make up for that weakness. The appeal factor is pretty high for middle grade readers.
Advanced Reader Copy provided by NetGalley