Hi everyone! We made it to the last book of the Gallagher Girls series, United We Spy by Ally Carter! If you’ve been following along, you’ll know I’ve reviewed the first five books in the series already. If not, feel free to check them out below!
- I’d Tell You I Love You But Then I’d Have to Kill You
- Cross My Heart and Hope to Spy
- Don’t Judge a Girl by Her Cover
- Only the Good Spy Young
- Out of Sight, Out of Time
For this review, I’ll reference events in previous books as necessary but will try not to spoil any major points. However this is the 6th book in the series so it won’t be completely spoiler free in regards to the other books. Regarding this book specifically, I’ll start with the spoiler free version and then I’ll provide a warning before the spoilers start.
So I finally made it to the end of the series and I have to say, it did get better as time went on. I do think Carter did a great job with this book.
This was the first time I actually could see Cammie being a great spy on her own as well as with her friends. However I don’t think it’s because Carter developed her along with her friends, but rather took Cammie’s bad habits and spread them out among her friends. Bex seemed to take the role of Cammie the most actually in terms of interrupting and not catching on quickly but she proved herself when needed. Macey took the aspect of Cammie that because fixated on on problem, decided how to fix it herself, and refused to let others change her mind. Liz however, was probably the best character in this book in terms of development. She played a large roll in determining where they needed to go and how to get there as well as really developing her covert skills. If anyone of the group was destined to be a real spy that is truly self-sufficient, I would say it would be Liz. With a bit more training of course.
Despite a lack of actual spy training in the books, the team did very well for themselves for the most part. They were able to reach their targets (usually), find hidden locations, and did so with relatively little back up. I have to say this book did remind me of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows quite a bit as there are times when the Operatives (Cammie & Co.) are on their own and aren’t able to rely on the adults around them. Even when things didn’t go according to plan, they did a great job improvising and adjusting. And with limited resources the missions became even more gripping and exciting than in previous stories.
Cammie herself did display the knowledge she gained from experience. When she had to chose between taking her friends with her and leaving them behind on her journey, she brought them along, not repeating the same mistake she’d made before. She was also a lot faster in piecing together the puzzles laid before her, even before Zach or Liz did, although this was usually because she was now the most experienced spy in the group. The camaraderie of the team was great to see and I loved that the emphasized the importance of having each other’s backs and sticking together so often.
While the story may not have been the most original or the most intricate overall, I greatly enjoyed reading along and the entire journey with Cammie. I did give this book 5 out of 5 stars on Goodreads. It was a great way to end the series in my opinion.
I’ll go onto spoilers next so if you don’t want to read those, skip to the second photo of the book cover. After that photo it will be safe again! Also the cover doesn’t match the previous books as my library and it’s partner libraries didn’t have the older cover for this book anymore. This is a newer cover style for the books and the only one I could get my hands on!
Starting with what I was touching on already, Cammie has really grown and learned from her past experiences. Even with Zach’s urging to leave Bex, Liz, and Macey behind at school when they’re making their escape, she refuses to split the group up and leave them. She also delegates very well and is great at adjusting to the situation. Despite the shock of seeing Preston’s father shot in front of her, she quickly assessed the situation to be able to break the window and get to him to get his message.
Continuing on, it did feel that what annoyed me about Cammie was just transferred to Bex and Macey. While Liz was explaining her tests and her essay from when she was being considered for the Gallagher Academy, Bex kept interrupting and displayed a huge lack of listening and comprehension throughout the conversation. While Bex and Cammie have both suffered from this before, Bex seemed to be even worse at connecting what Liz was saying and the situation. Of course, Liz was unloading the feelings she’d been holding back for some time quickly, without much eloquence but Bex’s impatience really slowed down the conversation and created frustration.
Macey, by comparison, seemed to take over the role of the stubborn, distrustful, and single-minded spy that Cammie once dominated. Her only focus for most of the story was Preston and insisting they go find him and rescue him. I loved Macey’s character but she was annoying in this book as she kept distracting the team with her one goal, rather than focusing on the big picture. Of course, her instincts were actually right as Preston was in danger and considering the people telling her that he was safe were all wrong, but he didn’t turn out to be that big of a help in the end. Preston hadn’t been involved in the Circle so he wasn’t able to provide them the information they needed, in the end Zach’s mom had to provide that. But it was nice to see that Macey was right and they were able to carry out that epic break out.
I thought that the plot points with Agent Edwards and Catherine ended up being predictable but I loved the story line of Amirah. While she was only in the book for a few pages, her story fit in perfectly with the rest of the series. Like Cammie, Preston, Zach, Macey, and so many others, Amirah couldn’t pick who her family had been and what they made her, but she could pick what path she’d follow and create new life for herself. I loved that message throughout the story and loved seeing it reiterated once more.
As for Aunt Abby and Agent Townsend, along with Rachel and Mr. Solomon, I loved that we still got to see them every so often in the story but that they didn’t really “save the day” and that our characters got to be the heroes. Also their love stories seemed cute as well!
And in regards to the three last chapters, I felt that they were the perfect ending to the series. We started with graduation, then saw a bit of Cammie’s life at college continuing her education and career at the same time, and then their lives ten years later. It seemed not only fitting that Cammie would get herself a proposal surrounded by everyone important in her life, but also one last chat with her closest friends in their old suite.
And that’s the end for the Gallagher Girls series! I miss it already, don’t you? I think I might do a movie review next. I’ve done so many musical and book reviews lately. Or maybe I’ll review the new Taylor Swift album, Reputation, although I think nearly everyone has done that already. We shall see.
So let me know, what did you think of the Gallagher Girls series as a whole? I’d love to know!
Thanks for reading!
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