REVIEW: The Spy Who Raised Me

My goal this year is to finish two books a month. Somehow it’s almost the end of February and this is my first review. I am reading, but not at a very quick pace. I’m also juggling 3 books at once, which I seriously don’t recommend but sometimes, that’s just what we need to do.

Sometime in January, I had the sudden desire to read graphic novels. I don’t know why I don’t read it often, but whenever I do, it’s usually from Netgalley. Hopefully I’ll read another one soon.

The Spy Who Raised Me
by Ted Anderson and Gianna Meola (illustrator)

get it here


Some parents want their children to turn out just like them. Only a few secretly turn their kids into elite special operatives.

Josie Black can infiltrate any building, speak a dozen languages, and fight like a martial arts master. But no one told her that. After J.B. detects gaps in her memory, her mom reveals the truth: she works for a covert agency, and she’s given J.B. the skills of a super spy. After J.B. freaks out, runs off, and tries to escape the weird world of espionage, she’ll have to decide who she wants to be.


*An e-copy was given through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

As someone who grew up thinking being a spy would be really cool, I was very excited to read this. It follows J.B. who lived a very ordinary life but one day found out that she had the skills of a spy and that her mother was hiding a very big secret from her.

The storyline was interesting, unlike anything I’ve read before. It was fast-paced, though a little confusing at times, but also action-packed. As I kept reading, I became more disturbed by the many lies that J.B. grew up with, especially with how manipulative her mother was. The main character, being a somewhat ‘programmed’ child, had certain controls that could be voiced activated, such as “Halt and Obey”. As if that wasn’t messed up enough, there’s a [slight spoiler] few frames in the book where it’s being repeated over and over again [end spoiler]. I can’t help but to wonder if this storyline had a deeper meaning behind it. However, other reviews explains it to be child abuse.

I didn’t enjoy the art style. It just wasn’t my thing. However, I can appreciate the monochromatic colours since that isn’t easy at all to do. It also wasn’t particularly memorable. While reading it, I took a break for a few weeks only to feel very confused as I couldn’t remember what J.B. looked like. Now, as I am writing the review a week after finishing the book, I still can’t remember most details of the book.

I still have many questions after finishing the book. Some are unanswered, some are just events in the book that I am very confused by. There were definitely many points from other review that made me realise there were a few plot holes which I didn’t notice at all. Though I didn’t change my ratings because of that, it’s still an important point to note.

This book left me with mixed feelings. On one hand, it was interesting and different, not memorable for the most part but there were parts that left me with negative feelings and only those are the ones that are ingrained in my memory.


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