Also Known As

Also Known As - Robin Benway (Full review can be found on my blog, Paper Riot.)Warning: this book may cause uncontrollable giggling and/or the unability to wipe that smile from your face. It may even cause severe stomach hurt or the urge to "rofl". Be aware of this when you try to read it in public. Trust me, I know what I'm talking about. I read most of Also Known As on the train and subway to university and boy, I have gotten some funny looks. To say that this book is pretty funny is an understatement. With hilarious dialogue, an ever stunning setting and a cast of fabulous characters, Also Known As made me laugh out loud and feel warm inside. It was just what I needed.Maggie and her parents are spies who travel the world to protect it from harm. Yes, that's right. SPIES. I LOVE SPIES. I have never even read a book about espionage before, which is too bad, because Robin Benway proves exactly how much fun it can be. Sure, the espionage part was just one of multiple focus points. And I wish there had been more mystery throughout the story, instead of just in the last few chapters. But with enough mystery and suspence to keep me intrigued and a plot twist I did not see coming, Also Known As was right up my alley.I wasn't exaggerating when I said these characters were fabulous. Like in The Extraordinary Secrets of April, May & June, the only other book by Robin Benway that I have read, each of them had an outstanding, distinctive voice and a great sense of humor, too. Maggie was a wonderful main character. She was fun, quirky and, for me, easy to relate to. It was so much fun following her from being a homeschooled spy who had probably never even talked to another teenager before, to a private school girl dealing with first time everythings: friends, kisses, parties, and oh, a solo assignment that may or may not be her only chance to protect her family from serious danger. No big deal.But as much as I loved Maggie, I loved her friend Roux even more. Because Roux, despite having a pretty lonely life, was HILARIOUS. I loved her from her name and whirlwind attitude to the way she addressed her doorman. She was outspoken and genuine and witty, the "a little bit more" version of Maggie in every way. Yes, Roux is definitely going on my list of awesome sidekicks. Another fabulous character was Angelo, who, like Maggie says, is "if Tim Gunn and James Bond had a baby, and that baby was Yoda". I can't describe it any better. And then we have Jesse Oliver, who I didn't care that much for. The romance was just too fast-paced for me. But I must admit that I enjoyed his and Maggie's banter.If there's anything I have learned from reading both this book and The Extraordinary Secrets of April, May & June, it's that Robin Benway writes funny, cute and light stories, filled with witty dialogue and loveable characters. Though the plot in Also Known As was pretty straight-forward, these things made me fall in love with it anyway, and to be honest, I'm counting the days until the sequel comes out (which involves Paris! PARIS.). If you're looking for a hilarious and highly entertaining book, you definitely want to give Also Known As a try. Trust me on this.