Cover Rating: 7/10 The cover was illustrated by the author and captures her vision very well. I’m not a fan of all the gray, but the cover is cute, eye-catching, and perfect for the Middle Grade audience.
Truly Daniels is horribly shy. She goes out of her way to avoid any attention. She is so good at hide-and-seek that no one will play with her anymore. If there’s one thing that Truly Daniels is good at, it’s hiding.
But hiding gets her into trouble when she accidentally witnesses a stranger and his associates plotting the murder of a local congresswoman. She tells her mom, who tells the FBI, who tells the CIA, and suddenly Truly Daniels finds herself as a CIA asset. When the congresswoman is found dead and Truly is kidnapped, she learns that her foe is the wealthy and powerful leader of a very dangerous terrorist organization. Now, her hiding might be exactly what the CIA needs to bring Ptolemy Narrow and The Flood to justice.
Agent Apple: The Shy Spy is a delightfully fun story full of classic spy tropes such as the smooth spy, the double agent, explosive chase scenes, and plenty of fun reveals that had me at the edge of my seat. If you are a fan of action-adventure stories, you will love this book! Each of the main characters undergoes some character development throughout the story, and they make a surprisingly effective spy team. Ptolemy Narrow was a fantastic villain with a surprisingly devious plot that had me captivated. I could not read this fast enough!
Agent Apple is a truly delightful tale of adventure and espionage, with a great cast, a riveting plot, and great lessons learned along the way.
Pros: Truly was a delightful character. I enjoyed watching her learn and grow and face some of her own prejudices. I liked the fact that, while there were fun chase scenes and explosions, the majority of their time spent as spies was decidedly less Hollywood-ish. The conflict was awesome and really had me at the edge of my seat the whole time. The author was quite skilled at upping the stakes again and again until it really looked like winning would simply be impossible. I was so invested.
Cons: The book did seem to drag in the middle. When I first received the book, the formatting was terrible. I contacted the author and asked if I could fix it for her. 20 minutes later (thanks to Vellum, my new favorite software program) and I had a much easier-to-read book in my hand. Knowing that the author was also the graphic designer, I was quite surprised that there wasn’t an “agent apple” apple for the chapter headings to help solidify the branding.
Favorite Quote: “The hard truth is that the only thing stopping a person, any person, from being a bully or a criminal is choice.”
You can get your hands on a copy of Agent Apple: The Shy Spy HERE.