Blog Tour: The 16th Academy by Spencer Yacos (Review!)

Summary/Cover Image from Publisher's Website:
Eastway Academy, a shadowy organization steeped in espionage, values obedience above all else. Although a well-trained agent in his third year, 16-year-old Davy Prince struggles to find his morals when every mission seems to put innocent lives at risk. How will Davy react when sabotage turns an already risky job into an all-out struggle for survival?

One of my favorite series as a teenager was Ally Carter's Gallagher Girls. Spies, secrets, mystery, and intrigue...it was the perfect combination. 

Since then I've been a fervent an of spy series, always looking for the latest and greatest. Thus, when Spencer Yacos's The 16th Academy, a book promising "shadowy organization steeped in espionage," landed on my radar,  I was intrigued. 

The Result? Suspenseful and fast paced, The 16th Academy delivers an espionage mission perfect for fans of spy thrillers. Better yet, it was incredibly reminiscent of Gallagher Girls - a fact that made me a very happy reader. 

The 16th Academy begins the story of Davy Prince. Davy is your ordinary, everyday teenager with the exception of one tiny little thing: he's a teenage spy who has brought down dozens of notorious criminals. 

I thought Spencer Yacos did a great job of capturing the voice of a teenage boy. Davy's voice appeared to be very authentic. I especially liked how Spencer captured the awkwardness that follows us as we grow up. I also appreciated the fact that Davy wasn't perfect - he wasn't the best spy, he wasn't the best with girls, and sometimes he did/said the wrong thing. It made his story more "real," and made it exciting to see when he did manage to bring in the win. However, while I did like Davy's character, I never felt a real connection to him - there was never a moment where I went from "liking" him to "loving" him. This isn't the worst thing in the world - it happens - but I feel that if I had felt that connection I would've enjoyed The 16th Academy more. 

My favorite part of the book was the plot. As mentioned above, I'm a sucker for a good spy mystery, and The 16th Academy manages to come through in that regard. Spencer presents a mystery filled with twists, turns, explosions (literal and figurative), plan crashes, and more! Honestly, there wasn't a moment where there wasn't something exciting going on. This kept the story moving at a rapid speed, and better yet, managed to truly hold my attention. I will say I saw some of the plot twists coming, but others were still a surprise. The ending, especially, left me was a oh-my-goodness kind of feeling. 

In all, while I didn't always connect with the main character, The 16th Academy is still a worthwhile read. I would especially suggest it to teenage boys who are reluctant readers! 

Grade: B 

The 16th Academy is now out!

Source: eBook provided by publisher

Buy Links:

Amazon | BN | Kobo 
About the Author:
Spencer Yacos is proud to be publishing his debut novel at Cedar Fort. He has been writing on the local level as well as for magazines such as Teen Ink. Spencer was also accepted into the Emerging Writers Institute at Brown University over the summer of 2015. He looks forward to continuing with the series as he heads off to study in college.

Author Residence: Wyckoff, NJ

Author Links: 

"Camelot is ready. The operation is a go," a voice crackled through the transceiver in my ear. The mission was being initiated and a part of me was annoyed. Only halfway through my fried chicken, I was still pretty hungry. I hadn't eaten since the night before, since the plane ride down that morning served no breakfast. Given that I was going to meet with a drug kingpin in a few minutes, the last thing I wanted was for my stomach to be growling. I sat in the first floor food court of the Franklin Building, El Paso's premier commercial block and the headquarters of the global fast food chain Beef n' Wings. It was just after noon and the area stirred with visitors eager for their lunch. From my position I could see two other field agents, the only other two in the building. Far off to my right, just outside the crowds and colorful cacophony of restaurants, a hulking teenaged boy seemed to have the same idea I had as he snacked on a beef hot dog from one of the stands. He wore a blue hard hat, with matching blue overalls and heavy-looking harnesses which clung to his body. At his side he loosely held a squeegee as well as some napkins, presumably for his meal. After taking a big gulp, his lips began to move. It was much too noisy in the food court to pick up any word he was saying naturally, but on the transceiver I could hear him perfectly. Percival is ready. Let's get this over with."

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