They Call Me Alexandra Gastone by T.A. Maclagan

Friday, 15 May 2015

They Call Me Alexandra Gastone by T. A. Maclagan
My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars

After having the book blast on 'They call me Alexandra Gastone' a couple of months back, I was immensely intrigued by the synopsis. In this day and age, the story line is anything but far fetched and it definitely drew a cord watching the unrest in the Middle East that has been brewing for such a long time.

Of course the book is not referring to this conflict specifically (though it may have draw inspiration from it in part). Rather, It sets a very strong portrait of the thoughts and feelings a young woman has, being raised with ideals and saddled with a mission that may not have her (or a much wider populace's) best interests at heart. A reminder, if you will, of the heart ache that vengeance and misguided ideals can bring and that we cant see both sides of the same coin at once.

They call me Alexandra Gastone starts with Milena 'aka' Alexandra (or Lex for short). Lex has been placed as an undercover sleeper opperative in a important position at only 7 years old. Her goal is to grow into a prime position within the countries intel and gather it for her own.

Though doing something for your home country is not as simple as it is cracked up to be when motives are unclear and you suddenly get faces with hurting the people who have played a role in your life for as long as your own blood family has.

Lex is a very interesting character. I adore the fact that she is smart enough to question, yet loyal enough to hold on to her ideals. She is not reckless or stupid but she is damaged, giving her some definite flaws. Overall, she is a great persona to read through and I find myself drawn to the realism that comes with her thought patterns and actions.

“Family is what could motivate a man to knowingly house a spy. it could give him the fortitude to look her in the eye and pretend he cared.”

The little bit of politics and world building surrounding the countries unrest is cleverly done and there is a good diversion of other characters to keep the story from becoming bogged down or to dark. I could really find myself feeling for Grant and got quite attached to Albert.

The story is told in First Person, all from Lex's perceptive. It's a contemporary YA though probably better suited to the more mature YA reader due to violence and the more subtle emotional undertones. There is romance too, though it does not overshadow the other aspects and weaves in with the main story well.

I'd played a part for so long, who was I? A spy? A granddaughter? A high school student? A friend? A liar? A traitor? I was all of these people, and the contradictions where starting to rip me apart.

There where quite a few plot twists and revelations, shifting the story toward completely different outcomes in total contrast to what I had expected. It's also one of the reasons I have given it a high mark. It's incredibly well done. The storyline flows nicely and keeps you engaged throughout to find out what will happen next.

On that note, a word of warning. Even though this book ends at a good spot, it also does on a major cliffhanger. I am very curious what is to come still and can only image what T. A. Maclagan will conjure up next. I believe the series will have 2 parts and there are quite a few directions it can take...

Would I recommend it?
Absolutely. It's a refreshing story with loads of plot twists, espionage a good dash of romance and action!

1 comment :

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