Review: Two Lies and a Spy (Two Lies and a Spy #1) by Kat Carlton

Two Lies and a SpyTwo Lies and a Spy

Kat Carlton

Genre: Espionage, Young Adult

Publication Date: September 3, 2013

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Source: Own the ebook on my Kindle.

Synopsis: Kari plunges into the world of espionage on a mission to save her parents while trying to impress the guy she’s been in love with forever.

When sixteen-year-old Kari’s dad sends her an unexpected text, she and her brother immediately go into hiding. Because when your parents are superspies and your dad declares a Code Black, it can only mean something bad. Very bad.

Kari soon discovers that her parents have been disavowed and declared traitors, and she’s determined to clear their names. Breaking into the Agency seems like a reasonable plan, especially with the help of a team that includes her longtime crush, Luke, as well as her two best friends—an expert hacker with attitude and a master martial artist—and Luke’s popular, vindictive twin sister. Oh, and a new guy, who’s as cute as he is complicated…


My Thoughts

Earlier today, I was scrolling through Bloglovin’ just randomly looking at blog posts, and then I saw this book reviewed on someone’s blog. After exciting myself over the book cover and title, I didn’t even read the review; I just looked up the title on goodreads, judged it to be good, and got the book. I’m glad I did, because this was the perfect Friday read, with the perfect hilarity in its characters, the none-too-sappy romance, and an easy-to-understand plot. This book would probably be great for any spy-lover who just needs a book to keep them interested yet still relaxed.

Kari is the perfect heroine in the novel. She isn’t as spy-y as Kat from Heist Society or Cam from I’d Tell You I Love You, But Then I’d Have to Kill You, which made this spy story all the more unique. She is of course infatuated with Luke, who doesn’t seem all that great to me, but I love Kari’s snarkiness, especially when a certain boy (Evan!) is involved. Easily annoyed spies are definitely the best. What I also like about her is that although she acts tough and is very strong-willed, I got a glimpse of her vulnerability, which makes Kari seem more like an actual stressed-out person than a book character.

As it says in the blurb, Luke and Evan are the two main guys in Kari’s life. Luke is the one Kari’s had a crush on for a long time. He’s sporty and hot and seems human. On the other hand, there’s Evan, the impossibly gorgeous boy with his uniform perfectly tailored to fit him, and who ends up looking like a model. And don’t forget the cute British accent! Did I also mention he can’t help but teasing Kari at every turn. That’s another part of him that differs with Luke: while Evan is the seemingly stuck-up British prick, Luke is the super-nice guy (who also happens to have a completely opposite, slutty sister). That’s the most-likely reason I didn’t like Luke that much; I can see him as a friend to Kari, but he’s too nice to be boyfriend material.

It was nice that the plot started as soon as the first page of the novel, especially since the book isn’t really that long. It was also delightful how no matter what any other characters say, you believe exactly what the main character thinks, even if they’re wrong. And that’s exactly what happened in this book. The conclusion of the mystery in this book was nowhere near what I was expecting it to be, and I was positively surprised when I, and in turn, Kari, turned out to be completely wrong about the happy ending. That’s not to say there isn’t a happy ending, only that it’s not one you’d normally expect.That wasn’t the lone part of the story I was shocked at though: I didn’t at all expect who Kari would choose to be her boyfriend. At some moments, I believed it would be Luke, and at others, I thought it was going to be Evan. Up until almost the very end, I was sure about who Kari would choose, and I was happy. Then came the other guy though, and again, it turned out I was wrong. I’m hoping that in the next book, she’ll choose the other guy; I can’t deal with another disappointment like that.

Overall the book was a fun, quick read, and it was more entertaining than anything. Though this book is based on what could be called a mystery, there wasn’t really much to solve, though it was still nice to tag along with Kari while she finds out the truth for us. Two Lies and a Spy was an easy read and a book for about middle-grade to high-school readers.


Excerpt

Mr. Carson gives up on getting any useful information out of me and leaves. But my hopes of being released are dashed when two other agents come in and sit down across from me. They start to ask me questions that date back to when I was a toddler.
Do I remember my parents speaking Russian at home?
Of course I do. They met in Moscow, and they both speak it fluently.
Do I know of Russians who came to the house to socialize or do business?
Well, duh.
Who are these people?
I name a professor at Georgetown, a researcher at Dumbarton Oaks, a lawyer who deals with immigration issues. I also name a manicurist, a banker, and a tailor who services half of the Pentagon. These individuals are harmless and just make their living like everyone else. They’re not spies or foreign agents, for God’s sake.
Do I speak Russian?
I tell them I suck at languages. I can’t even speak pig Latin.
They don’t bother to ask about Charlie, and I don’t offer the information.
They want to know if we eat traditional Russian dishes.
Really? Sure. My parents loaded my Similac with Smirnoff. I’m addicted to Borscht. I adore ice cream topped with caviar. Please!
They do not appreciate being mocked.
Well, I don’t appreciate being interrogated.
We stare humorlessly at one another for a while, and then they begin with the questions again.
Do I dream in Russian?
I laugh hysterically at this. I have already told them I don’t speak it, so why would I dream in it?
They ask me the value of the dollar to the ruble.
I have no clue.
What religion am I?
Officially? Baptist. But it’s not like we really attend church.
How often do we go?
I don’t know . . . a few times a year. Definitely Easter and Christmas.
What’s our family’s real religion?
Baptist. I spell it: b-a-p-t-i-s-t.
They don’t appreciate the spelling part.
So we’re not Russian Orthodox?
No.
Am I sure about that?
Yes.
Was I baptized Russian Orthodox?
Not to my knowledge, but I was only a few months old. I ask them if they recall their own baptisms, because if so, then they have incredible memories. I ask how they know that they weren’t signed over to Satan at the age of three days?
I can tell that one of them wants to smack me. The other one moves around in his chair as if he has a really bad case of hemorrhoids but just gets on with the questioning.
Do I love my parents?
Duh.
Do I love them enough to lie for them?
Yes, but I’m not lying.
Do I love them enough to betray my country?
I tell them that I am beyond sick of their questions. I tell them that I want a glass of water.
They ignore me.
I repeat my request.
They ask me if I know the Pledge of Allegiance.
Yes.
Will I please recite it?
I do.
How do those words make me feel?
Huh? I don’t know. Fine.
Proud to be an American?
Sure.
Or ashamed to be a traitor to my country, like my parents?
I tell them that they are brainwashed idiots, and that they are so far over the line.
What line would that be?
The line of common decency. The line of truth. The line where my parents and I are supposed to be considered innocent until proven guilty.
Am I quite sure that I’m not the one who’s crossed the line? Me, and my parents, too? Is it decent to commit treason for money? Is it truthful to lie to them? And how can they consider us innocent when we are mired in hundreds of facts that point to our guilt?
I explode.
I tell them that if they ask me any more obnoxious questions, I will pulverize them.
They ask how long I’ve had these violent tendencies. And are they fantasies, or do I seriously consider acting on them?
Though I want to smash both of their faces in, I run to the door instead. I pound on it and scream that I am done, done, done with these assholes, and that someone had better let me out of here and give me access to an attorney, or I will contact our around-the-corner neighbor, who is a Supreme Court justice, and make them pay for this.
I demand to be assured of my brother’s welfare.
I scream that they had better let my mother take a shower and give her clean clothes.
And I tell them that if anyone shoots my dad, I will make sure they are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
The door opens while I am still pounding on it, and I fall forward. I’m so tired and frustrated that I’ve lost the ability to count on my reflexes. I trip and sprawl right into Evan Kincaid’s arms.


Rating: 3 1/2 little fishies!

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