Tag Archives: spies

Rewind and Review (5): I’d Tell You I Love You, But Then I’d Have to Kill You

26 Apr

Book cover for I'd Tell You I Love You, But Then I'd Have to Kill You by Ally CarterI’d Tell You I Love You, But Then I’d Have to Kill You (Gallagher Girls #1)

by Ally Carter

(First published April 6, 2006 by Hyperion)

I’ve been a fan of Ally Carter’s other series, Heist Society, for a little while now, mostly because I have a thing for thieves and professional criminals. There’s something SO EXCITING and dangerous and engaging about them. But I’ve also always loved spies–Alias was one of my favorite TV shows when it was on–for pretty much the same reasons. I think it’s amusing, actually, because both spies and thieves seem to exist outside of the law a little bit, in different ways, though. Or maybe it’s that they’re both trying to keep secrets that draws me to them. Whatever it is, I’d been wanting to read Ally Carter’s Gallagher Girls series for awhile, and this fabulous Rewind & Review meme gave me the opening I needed! THANK YOU, REWIND & REVIEW. 

I’D TELL YOU I LOVE YOU, BUT THEN I’D HAVE TO KILL YOU was lots of fun, guys. Cammie Morgan is a student at the all-girls Gallagher Academy in Nowhereseville, Virginia. The residents of the small town think that Gallagher is a super-exclusive reform school for screw-up girls. What the townspeople DON’T know is that Gallagher is actually a major, highly secretive school for the training of spies. BOOM. Cammie’s mom is the director, and also a spy. Cammie’s education at Gallagher, which is ramping up now that she and her friends are old enough to start taking Covert Ops classes, as well as Gallagher’s secret front are put in jeopardy when Cammie meets a boy from town who strikes her fancy. Action and sekrets follow!

So the thing I loved the most about I’D TELL YOU I LOVE YOU, BUT THEN I’D HAVE TO KILL YOU is the hardcore spy stuff. The little snippets of crazy spy equipment that graduates and staff at Gallagher have invented or are in charge of, the pointers and things that Cammie and her friends learn in Covert Ops class, like how to find out things by looking through trash. All that nerdy, secret passageway, having dinner conversations in Farsi so that the students will be fluent in tons of CRAZY languages stuff just pushed all of my geek buttons. Maybe that sounds like a small thing to appreciate the most in Ally Carter’s book, but there you have it. 

I don’t mean to give Cammie and the other characters short shrift, though. Because they’re awesome in their own ways. Cammie is smart and strong and wants to be able to experience a little bit of normal life. She sometimes was a little flat to me, but only sometimes. Josh, the love interest, is cute and sweet. It’s easy to see why Cammie is attracted to him. Not the swooniest guy, but adorable. And since we’re talking about Cammie and Josh, one of my constant gripes about Ally Carter’s books is the lack of kissing/serious swoonworthy moments. They just aren’t here, and I missed them a little bit in I’D TELL YOU I LOVE YOU, BUT THEN I’D HAVE TO KILL YOU. 

The rest of the characters were great, too. I LOVED Bex and Liz, Cammie’s best friends. And Macey, I can already tell, is going to be awesome. I loved all their personalities and their strengths. They all complement each other so well. The Covert Ops teacher is a total fox who is definitely keeping some awesome secrets that I can’t wait to hear about. The supporting characters in I’D TELL YOU I LOVE YOU, BUT THEN I’D HAVE TO KILL YOU were all great. 

Ally Carter’s first Gallagher Girls book was a fun, quick, really enjoyable story about a young spy who just wants to have a normal relationship with a cute boy. Alas, spies can’t seem to do anything normal, as evidenced by the fact that Cammie and her friends turn her dates with Josh into Covert Ops assignments. To be honest, this was clever for sure, but it sometimes made Cammie and Josh’s relationship seem a little dry. (You know, when they call him The Subject and her The Operative. Not so many butterflies.) But there’s some really great stuff coming up, I think. The ending was action-packed, and it opened LOTS of cans of worms, so I know that the drama isn’t going to let up! Woot!  


Rewind & Review is an AMAZING new meme hosted jointly by two fabulous ladies, Ginger from Greads! and Lisa from Lisa Is Busy Nerding. This meme is all about mining your TBR piles and finding some long-lost gems (from 2010 or earlier) that you meant to read and somehow passed over. I KNOW, but it happens. Each month, each participant picks a few oldies but hopefully goodies to read, reviews ’em, and spreads the word. Huzzah!