Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Alias Dragonfly by Jane Singer

Alias Dragonfly
Female Spy, Civil War.. and for once, on the Union side... I saw this and declared I must read it.

The synopsis: Maddie is fifteen, her mother is dead, her father is off to fight in the Civil War, and she's been dumped at her Confederate loving aunt's boarding house. She finds herself in the middle of intrigue and ends up recruited by Pinkerton agents as a spy. Turns out Maddie has a really good eye..

I should've loved it, but I didn't. Nothing wrong with the writing style, let's get that out there. What did work for me is:

1. She doesn't become a spy until halfway through. The going is slow till then. The seventy percent point, she's still practicing maneuvers. 

2. Some things were just too preposterous. We're supposed to believe that Aunt Salome, the old stick in the mud, the same lady who gripes at Maddie for not dressing properly, is going to allow one of her boarders to just drag Maddie off to his sister's house for two days without a chaperone? I don't think so.

3. It took so long for Maddie and her reporter friend to follow her dad and his troops to the battle that they had to camp and all, but when the battle's over, Maddie simply hops on a wagon and voila! She's back at the boarding house.. ?

4. The reports, newspaper editorials.. What was the point? 

5. Master of Disguise? Not till the very end almost.

By the time the action occurred, I wasn't motivated to go any further. I give this a two. Again, like the style, but way too drawn out. Needs more action in the beginning. 

This was a netgalley book.

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