In honor of our summer Teen Thrills Book Club, which comes to an end in August, here are a few of our favorite spy and mystery series from the Young Adult section.
- The Finishing School series by Gail Carriger
A delightfully funny take on teenage spies, this steampunk series starts with Etiquette & Espionage and follows fearless Sophronia to Mademoiselle Geraldine’s Finishing Academy for Young Ladies of Quality (a.k.a. a school for spies and assassins). There is plenty of delicately silly dialogue and rolling action – along with a werewolf in a top hat, a robotic dog that leaves ashes all over the room (bad dog!), and a budding love triangle. Continues through Book 4.
- The Alex Rider series by Anthony Horowitz
This series has been around since 2000, and Horowitz is currently working on volumes 11 and 12 (Never Say Die will be out in the US in October). In the first book, Stormbreaker, British teen Alex is recruited by the M16 after his uncle dies under mysterious circumstances. Lots of undercover assignments, criminal organizations (or “organisations” if you want to get British about it), computer hacks, and car chases. An oldie but still going strong.
- The Embassy Row series by Ally Carter
If you’re a fan of Carter’s Gallagher Girls spy novels, then the Embassy Row series should be next on your To Read list. In All Fall Down, Grace moves to live with her grandfather, the ambassador of the (fictional) country of Adria. There she meets other embassy kids and falls deeper into the mystery of her mother’s death – or what she thinks is her mother’s murder. Read this one if you like thrilling twists and turns.
- The Charlotte Holmes series by Brittany Cavallaro
In this edgy new series, the descendants of Sherlock Holmes and John Watson attend a Connecticut boarding school and join forces to solve a spree of disturbing campus crimes. Charlotte Holmes is troubled and mean and beautiful, of course, and James Watson, our narrator, is a great unwilling-but-kind-of-willing accomplice. Start with A Study in Charlotte. Knowledge of the original Sherlock Holmes stories is helpful, but you’ll get by just fine having seen the BBC series with Benedict Cumberbatch.