Bennardo, Charlotte and Zaman Natalie. Blonde Ops.
May 6th 2014
by St. Martin's Griffin
E ARC from Netgalley.com
Bec is a hacker, and has been kicked out of yet another private boarding school for changing her grades, among other things. Her busy parents don't have time to deal with her, so she is shipped off to Rome to stay with Parker, a college friend of her mother's who is the editor of Edge magazine. To Bec's surprise, she is supposed to be an intern at the magazine, but things get complicated when Parker is badly injured in a car accident that may have something to do with the First Lady's visit to the magazine. Bec is put in the care of Charlotte, a reality show/model/highly driven business woman, and expected to keep working. Concerned for Parker's welfare and suspicious of the circumstances surrounding her accident, Bec starts to investigate. She is also a bit distracted by Taj, a fashion blogger who is working with Edge, and Dante, a local boy who makes deliveries to the magazine. Her investigations are interrupted by romantic dalliances around Rome, but when the first lady is kidnapped from a photo shoot, Bec's skills manage to save the day.
Strengths: Hard to go wrong with spies in Italy. The romance is light and fun, and appropriate for middle school. Good details about the fashion industry.
Weaknesses: Bec wasn't the most likeable character, and I didn't quite believe her skills. The whole set up strained credulity in a way that Carter's Gallagher Girls books don't, but I may still buy this for fans of that series.