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This is book number 2 in the Embassy Row series.
Ally Carter, in my humble opinion, has a gift for creating female characters who live implausible, but awesome (see: Gallagher Girls for spies and Heist Society for art thieves), lives and yet make them completely and utterly relatable.
The girl in question here is Grace Blakely, the granddaughter of the ambassador to the fictional European country of Adria. She's in Adria permanently because her mother was murdered three years ago (I'll leave you to discover the details of that yourself) and her father is in the U. S. military. So, Grace, with all her PTSD from witnessing said murder, is in Adria to rest and recover.
Except, as detailed in the first book of this series, All Fall Down, there isn't much rest to be had in Adria. Especially now, as the Festival of the Fortnight -- a local festival celebrating the overthrow of the monarchy -- begins, Grace is increasingly aware that her life and the people's lives of those around her are in danger.
I really don't want to give away much more than that, because much of the enjoyment of this book (nay, this series) is the thrill ride of twists and turns that Carter takes you on. This book does stand on its own fairly well, but if you want the whole story, you definitely need to start at the beginning. There are spies and assassins, there are secret tunnels and hidden societies, and tons of secrets to be both kept and found out.
A heads up: Grace is not as affable as Carter's other heroines. But, she's suffering from PTSD and anxiety, and I (at least) was willing to forgive her for that. It also makes her an incredibly untrustworthy narrator, which I found to be fascinating, especially in a thriller setting.
It's a unique direction for Carter, one that I think readers will enjoy.— Melissa Fox