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Literary, etc

Literary, etc is an eclectic blog where we talk & review books, films, & whatever strikes our mood.

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I, Spy: 1 (Spy Another Day)

I, Spy: 1 (Spy Another Day) - Jordan McCollum CIA operative, Talia Reynolds, finds herself in a predicament. As an agent working in Canada, she lives a double life. Her boyfriend, Danny, doesn’t know she’s an agent and thinks she’s a lawyer. She constantly has to break dates with him and yet, she can’t quite imagine a different career. Added to the craziness of her life is her partner, Elliot and having to keep him focused on the job at the hand. When she’s assigned a job that involves romancing a Russian aerospace executive, Talia realizes she’s in a difficult position; just when she and her fellow operatives have things figured out, Danny’s life is threatened and Talia must decide how much to sacrifice. Will she be able to save Danny without blowing her cover or will she realize there’s no going back?Jordan McCollum’s I, Spy is a fast paced read, from the opening scene to the end, it’s non-stop action. Your heart begins to pound during the undercover operations and when it’s all over, you’re happy to breathe again. Narration is first person and if you’ve ever watched Burn Notice, you know Michael Westen narrates the show with little tidbits about spy life. McCollum utilizes this approach with Talia and it’s a fun way to bring a character to life and to tell a story.Character development is a bit weak and McCollum focuses primarily on Talia and it makes perfect sense since she’s our narrator. Talia is dating Danny, an aerospace engineer, and I liked him, but I wished I knew more about him. He’s always on the back burner and doesn’t ask Talia many questions. I do believe there’s more to him than we see. There are a few scenes where Talia shows up at his building and when he spots her, he’s a bit unnerved to see her. Then we have Elliot, Talia’s partner. His mind isn’t focused on work because his wife is due to go into labor at any moment. Talia fights for Elliot to be at her side and she even realizes that his priorities have changed. Danny is jealous of Elliot because he spends more time with Talia than he does and she never talks about her work. McCollum needed to add additional tension to their relationship, although there’s something between Elliot and Talia. Maybe some unresolved attraction. Finally, we have Fyodor Timofeyev, the Russian who refuses to give up any information. He is shrouded in mystery and remains so even towards the end.I, Spy is Latter-Day Saint/Mormon centered with regards to Talia and Danny. There’s mention about how Talia doesn’t drink alcohol including caffeine and where she went for a mission. Although McCollum sets up her characters with a Mormon background, there are no religious undertones.My favorite quotes: "James Bond never had to deal with wardrobe malfunctions.""What are you talking about? Don’t tell me you’re falling for me, too."If you’re a fan of spy thrillers, you’ll enjoy Jordan McCollum’s I, Spy. There was a bit of unfinished business regarding an earlier surveillance case and I'm hoping McCollum will wrap it up in later book. I, Spy is a heart stopping thrilling action ride. This review is posted at Literary, etc