The Books of Elsewhere: The Second Spy

by Jacqueline West
ages: 9+
First sentence: “If you believe that death is about to spring upon you at any moment, you won’t spend much time watching television.”
Others in the series: The Shadows, Spellbound
Review copy provided by the publisher.

Hm… how to do this without spoiling the other two? Well, first go read the other two! (Seriously: you won’t regret it. This is one fine middle grade series.)

Olive has managed to thwart the evil McMartins so far, a little bit by chance and luck, and a little bit through skill. However, thwarting is not the same as getting rid of. And, so Olive has been creeping around, hoping that Annabelle McMartin doesn’t kill her. That, and she’s starting sixth grade, and middle school, which is its own beast. Granted, the two — being afraid for your life and starting middle school — aren’t necessarily compatible. But, thankfully, Olive has the cats and Rutherford on her side.

Or does she??

Another fine, deliciously creepy, intriguing, fun addition to this clever series. I liked that West used trust and friendship as the backdrop for this tale, exploring this pretty traditional and mundane (though important) topic in such a unique way. But, beyond that, every book is well plotted, and wraps up nicely (my favorite thing!), while leaving room for yet another adventure with these fun characters.

And now that I’m all caught up, I have to wait for the next one to come out.

(Just for the record: because this is a Cybils nominee, I’ve been asked to make sure y’all know this is my opinion only, and not that of the panel.) 

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