Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Gilda Joyce: The Dead Drop

Oh, Gilda Joyce. How I love you and your wonky ways.

It's summertime and Gilda has moved to Washington, D.C. for a summer job at the National Spy Museum. How perfect is that? She is sharing an apartment with Caitlin Merrill ( a recent college graduate) who is more than a bit surprised when she takes in Gilda's appearance. She is decked out in her 60s spy chic outfit complete with flipped hair and Jackie O pink suit.

Once Gilda gets to the spy museum, she is in heaven. After getting settled in Gilda gets to go on a field trip with the museum's historian to acquire some new spy paraphernalia from an Russian former spy. On meeting Boris, Gilda immediately notices some of his left over spy habits...like gazing over her shoulder to see who is coming down the street and she notices that her psychic abilities kick in when she is around him.

Soon after the museum acquires Boris' lipstick gun and red glass brooch, Gilda starts having dreams. Dreams that she is certain are a message. And these dreams are peppered with D.C. locations, and well as a blond woman and Abraham Lincoln! Gilda wonders what is going on. Funny things also start happening in the museum...things that cannot be explained or blamed on faulty technology. Is Boris really and ex-spy? Is the Spy Museum haunted? Will Gilda be able to solve any of these mysteries in her new role as spy camp counselor?

Jennifer Allison keeps this series going strong with the familiar (yet growing) character of Gilda in a new location. She is on her own, but Wendy is present in Gilda's letters to her, and Gilda's mom comes in with phone calls. The Washington contingent is fun, and the appearance of a certain author is well placed. D.C. itself becomes a character, as readers see it through Gilda's eyes. Descriptions are rich and detailed, yet don't go on too long. A personal favourite is the description of the crazy hotel where spies and celebrities go when they don't want to be bothered! Though Gilda is 14, she is a young 14. I feel like she gets a bad rep in some circles as unbelievable, but trust me...working in a MS shows that there is certainly a range when it comes to maturity levels and young teens.

For fans of the series, of mysteries and of quirky characters! On shelves May 09.


Unknown said...

Gilda Joyce is one of those series I've been meaning to read for aaaaages, but I just never seem to get around to picking up. I don't know a single person that hasn't encountered Gilda Joyce and fallen in like.

I'll keep moving her further up my list!

Kate Coombs said...

My hesitation about Gilda so far has been that her psychic thing seems to be mostly in her head, and when actual ghostly things occur, she may not even know. This struck me as a little too cute. However, I found myself surprisingly pleased to hear there's a new book out, and your description makes it sound like a lot of fun! I think I need to face facts: I do like Gilda Joyce.

Stasia D said...

Hi Kate: It took me a bit to "get" Gilda myself. I find her delightfully wonky, but the psychic stuff does get deeper as the series goes on. There are definitely ghostly happenings that are undeniable in books 2 on!