Title: Maid of Secrets
Author: Jennifer McGowan
Six Word Review: Pickpocket becomes spy for Queen Elizabeth.
Summary: Meg Fellowes is an orphan, who makes her way as member of a touring acting troupe, and is also a talented pickpocket. One day, she picks the wrong pocket and ends up at the last place she imagined, not in the dungeons, but in Windsor Castle. She has been selected to be a part of the Queen’s Maids of Honor, a secret and select group of girls who protect the queen with their unique talents (a psychic seer, a code breaker, a flirtatious beauty and an assassin).
Meg’s abilities as a spy and to remember entire conversations word for word are put to the test when the Spanish Court visits and she begins to fall for a dashing young Spaniard. Not everyone is who they seem, and she isn’t sure who she can trust. Can she keep all her missions straight, protect England, the Queen and herself?
I started reading because: I read a summary of the book online and it sounded intriguing.
I kept reading because: I had to find out what would happen to Meg in the end!
I would give this book 6/10 stars, because I liked concept and it had lots of potential. Sadly, it fell short in my opinion, the writing style was a bit confused, it was caught in-between the language of the time period and the way we speak today. A lot of words and phrases seemed to be added on in an effort to sound old-fashioned. But there were parts that I enjoyed (see below).
I loved Meg’s strong and witty personality and her sense of humor. Also, the plot had lots of twists and turns that kept things interesting, and I appreciated that Meg was not a damsel in distress and didn’t need a man to protect her.
I hated the contrived “love at first sight”, it just felt excessive and too abrupt in the story line. I also hated the cover of my book, it was not how I imagined Meg at all and it looked too artificial and photoshoped.
If the lead character Meg was in a high school yearbook, she would be voted Most Likely To: work for the FBI.
Anything else we should know? I felt like the word choice and pacing was aimed at a younger YA audience than I expected, which made me wish it was a little more grown up, but that’s just me.