The Second Spy (The Books of Elsewhere Vol. 3)
by Jacqueline West
In Olive’s third adventure, what lurks below the house could be as dangerous as what’s hidden inside . . .
Some terrifying things have happened to Olive in the old stone house, but none as scary as starting junior high. Or so she thinks. When she plummets through a hole in her backyard, though, she realizes two things that may change her mind: First, the wicked Annabelle McMartin is back. Second, there’s a secret underground that unlocks not one but two of Elsewhere’s biggest, most powerful, most dangerous forces yet. But with the house’s guardian cats acting suspicious, her best friend threatening to move away, and her ally Morton starting to rebel, Olive isn’t sure where to turn. Will she figure it out in time? Or will she be lured into Elsewhere, and trapped there for good? (goodreads.com)
I think that this third book of Elsewhere is my all-time favourite in this series so far! Once I started reading it I could not put it down at all. I bought this latest book, whereas the first two were review copies from Penguin Canada. Actually, I pre-ordered this book because I knew I would want it. So glad I did!
The Second Spy is at times very creepy and scary, but in a family friendly way (if I can explain it that way). I was creeped out at times, but just because I could easily put myself into 12-year old Olive’s shoes and be totally afraid of things that go bump in the night. I mean, think about it. Never knowing when Annabelle is going to strike. Not knowing where she is, when she’s obviously been watching you. Not knowing whom to trust be it human, cat, or painting. And I am easily freaked out by scary things that happen at night, when you’re supposed to be all safe and tucked into bed. I had so much trouble sleeping as a kid, and one of my Scare Triggers is reading about something making noise in the middle of the night. Olive is MUCH braver than I am because she actually gets OUT OF BED and INVESTIGATES!
Also scary? Starting Junior High. Scarier? Starting Junior High and forgetting you’re still wearing your ruffly pink pyjama pants with penguins all over them. Oh, Olive. *shudder*
There’s a lot going on in this third book and it makes for a captivating read. I really didn’t want the book to be over because I was so caught up in the action. Olive is slightly less annoying in this book than in the second, although she does still have that “I know what I’m doing, so I’ll do it anyway, regardless of your advice.” and rather than just listen to a couple of people who are trying to talk to her and explain things she’s jumped to conclusions about, she runs away… but then again she’s just a kid and her reactions and actions are realistic. I just have to keep reading and remind myself that just because I HATE that kind of personality doesn’t mean I hate Olive because she’s being written that way.
Some VERY interesting and exciting revelations are made in The Second Spy and with this new information I just cannot wait for the next book. There is very obviously going to be a next book and I’m expecting it to be a doozy!
The sheer brilliance of imagination in this series would have enchanted me to no end if these books were out when I was younger. Heck, I wish I could go back in time and give 11-12 year old me copies of these books and just make 11-12 year old me SO HAPPY. If you haven’t picked up this Middle Grade magical, mystery series yet and you call yourself a MG fan, then WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR? Also, if you have younger kids who love magic, mystery and adventure, I say pick these books up immediately. They are fantastically written and fun and scary (in a good way) and magical and just so full of imagination.
Things you will want after reading The Books of Elsewhere: talking cats, magical paint, magical glasses that can let you enter paintings.
The Books of Elsewhere