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Book Review: Silver-Lined Secrets by Aleksander Petit (ARC)

"The Rowan Institute for Gifted Youth often feels more like a prison to Bailey Lowe than a spy academy. His lukewarm opinion worsens after meeting Oliver, a new student whose ties to the outside world are weaponized against him by the school. To complicate things more, Bailey forms an ill-advised friendship with Lucien, a tenderhearted barista who has taken a suspicious shine to him. This school and the people in it have taken Bailey’s ability to trust, and earning it back is a challenge he may not be brave enough for.

But Bailey’s caution isn’t misplaced. An unknown entity is targeting students—Bailey included— and the Rowan Institute staff refuse to explain how or why anyone managed to bypass the so-called “fortress.”

Bailey can only hope to be the ace spy the Institute wishes him to be. Otherwise, he risks failing his friends while the illusion of safety crumbles around them.

If he’s lucky, they won’t run out of tea first.

Silver-Lined Secrets is the first book in the Trick Questions trilogy series following an exhausted and anxious teenager as he traverses trauma and secrets, looking for a silver lining through the dark dangers that have invaded his life."

Pages: 356


Happy Book Birthday to Silver Lined Secrets by Aleksander Petit! I received Silver Lined Secrets for free in exchange for an honest review, thank you so much for my advanced copy!

Ok I am going to persuade you to read this book with three words - ready? LGBTQIA+ SPY SCHOOL! 🌈

I was immediately intrigued when I saw the blurb for this story and spoiler alert it was AMAZING! We follow our main character Bailey as he prepares to go back for another year at his top secret spy school alongside his twin brother. However, when his boyfriend breaks up with him, Bailey decides he needs a distraction and gets a job at a local cafe where he meets Lucien. Will Bailey get his chance of a normal life? Or will his secrets get in the way?

I loved Bailey as our protagonist! I loved the balance of his strength as a martial arts fighter and his struggles with anxiety. The mental health representation in this book was absolutely fantastic. Plus the LGBTQIA+ representation was amazing - there were characters all across the spectrum which was just so lovely to read!

Additionally, it had my favourite trope - found family!! All of the friend group were so interesting, they were such good friends and I loved how protective they were of each other. Obviously as spies in training they can’t trust much but they can trust each other and I think that is beautiful!

I’ve always loved media about spies - The Man from U.N.C.L.E is one of my favourite movies and of course my love for Killing Eve! - and this story is an amazing addition to the genre!

The story had a quick pace with some great action and had such a cosy vibe especially in the cafe which I absolutely loved! It was such a fun adventure and I’m super excited to see what happens next!

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