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Spy School (Spy School #1)

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4.03 of 5 stars 4.03  ·  rating details  ·  1,332 ratings  ·  225 reviews
Can a normal, average kid become a superstar secret agent? Maybe not, but it’ll be fun to watch him try!Ben Ripley may only be in middle school, but he’s already pegged his dream job: C.I.A. or bust. Unfortunately for him, his personality doesn’t exactly scream “secret agent.” In fact, Ben is so awkward, he can barely get to school and back without a mishap. Because of his...more
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published March 6th 2012 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,887)
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Juan Santiago
Don't give up on this series and don't judge a book by it's cover (babyish) The books do get better, Spy Camp that is book 2 is closer and more like Alex Rider and Jason Steed books.

Spy School is still good, but not good enough to put it on the top lists, however get book2 that is called Spy Camp, that is wicked you will be very glad you read Spy School first.

It's about Ben Ripley who gets taken away to become a spy and so he attends, ??? Yep a Spy School, lol. At the school they try to kill hi...more
Harry Routhaug
The Spy School books and the jason Steed books are the best spy books, they are very real life. I hope Mr Gibbs writes a book 3 in this series.
Rachel
This message will self destruct in approximately 30 seconds. Meet Ripley. Ben Ripley. He thought spy school was going to be all fancy clothes, exotic places, and crazy cool weapons. He was only sorta right. See, at 12 years old, Ben is a truly gifted mathematician. So, he knows that exactly 4,583 days after his twelfth birthday, secret agent Alexander Hale recruited him to the Academy of Espionage for the Central Intelligence Agency, the CIA. He also knows that it is awfully suspicious to recrui...more
Wayne Tousley
Good book, I liked Spy Camp a little better as there was more action, but still a good book and I gave it 5 stars. Our of all the spy kid books this is probably in 3rd place with Theodore Boone Kid lawyer, first place is the Jason Steed series. Alex Rider is close behind, Cherub was ok but lots of swearing. back to Spy School, okay a good book, Ben Ripley is brilliant at math and goes to a spy school his parents thinks it is just a school for gifted kids.
Jnase1
I would have given it four stars had there not have been useless cussing in the book (one "damn" and three occurrences of "ass"). It's really too bad,too, 'cause it would be a great mystery/action/adventure book, otherwise. What young reader wouldn't love a good spy novel, especially when the main character is a young boy? Such a shame!
Heather
The local librarian handed us this book (along with _Dead Guy Spy_) after she stubbornly argued that--just because of his gender--my son would not like _Harriet the Spy_. I still want to revisit Harriet, but I have to admit the librarian was right that this page-turner would be a better fit for my son. His reading level is a year ahead of his grade in school (just finished 2nd), so it's difficult to find reading material that's a challenge but avoids content above his maturity level. This book h...more
Tristan
Spy School 5/31/12
By Stuart Gibbs




Spy School, a Mystery/Action-Adventure book is about a kid named Ben Ripley, who is a nerd. He is sent to a school to be trained as a CIA agent. The problem is that Ben is horrible at being a spy.
But just when he thought he hated spy school, an assassin tries to kill
Him.
Now Ben tries to solve the case on his own. But there might be a bigger problem then an assassin, there might be a bomb under the school.
Be starts working with Erica, a fellow student.
Aft...more
Sarah (TotalTeenFiction)
This review was originally posted here on TotalTeenFiction

I was standing in the queue for the checkout machine at the library when the cover of this book caught my eye from the "quick choice" shelf. "Spy School? That's sounds so cool!" - were pretty much my thoughts upon seeing it. I scanned tagline ("Can an undercover nerd become a superstar secret agent?") and read the first few pages and knew I had to take it out there and then. Spy School tells the story of thirteen year old Ben Ripley who a...more
Mark Baker
Ben is delighted when the CIA asks him to join an elite spy school. But when his life is endangered within hours of arriving on campus, he begins to rethink things. Can he stay alive long enough to find out who wants to kill him? Yes, the book is aimed at kids, but I had a blast reading it. The story moved quickly with some good twists, and I really liked Ben.

Read my full review at Carstairs Considers.
Manning
Perfect book for a 12 or 13 year old boy. It has non-stop hilarious action. And, it also has a vey surprising ending. Please read!
Andrew
BEST BOOK EVER!!!! This book kept me entertained for about a day so it is somewhat short compared to maybe something like "Harry Potter". This book is great for young readers or at least it would be if not for the unnecessary cussing as it downgrades the over all kid factor of the book. But through the potty talk Stewart Gibbs has managed to write an amazing book. I can't wait for Spy Camp to be ordered by my library. Over all this book is a must read for any spy loving teen who can stand throug...more
Samantha
Middle schooler Ben Ripley is a math wiz who has big dreams for his future. He wants to work for the CIA. Sadly his personality is more clumsy geek than James Bond. Things seem to be looking up for Ben when he is swept away to a science magnet school that is really a super-secret CIA training ground for gifted middle and high school students. Was Ben chosen because of his incredible math skills or his knack for martial arts (which are nonexistent, by the way)? Not at all. Instead he was chosen b...more
Diana
review submitted to School Library Journal--
Ben Ripley, self described nerdy math genius, receives a mysterious summons to join the Spy School,a secret recruitment arm of the CIA. Since his life’s ambition is to become a spy, he is thrilled by the offer. But once at the school, Ben finds it to be a very different sort of place than any other. His introduction and initial assessment upon arrival involves ninjas, flying bullets, and Erica, the most beautiful girl he has ever seen. His first encoun...more
Ms. Yockey
School Library Journal (February 1, 2012)
Gr 5-8-Ben Ripley, a 12-year-old math genius, receives a mysterious summons to join the Academy of Espionage, a secret recruitment arm of the CIA. Since his life's ambition is to become a spy, he is thrilled by the offer, but his first day is hardly what he expected. It involves ninjas, flying bullets, and Erica, the most beautiful girl he has ever seen. A fellow student asks him to hack into the computer mainframe for him because the rumor mill says that...more
Joyce
Jan 07, 2013 Joyce rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: 9th
Spy School
Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2012, 291pp, $ 15.99
Stuart Gibbs
ISBN 978-1-4424-2182-0

“Bing Bong Bing Bong...” I was watching a fantastic spy gun shooting against his enemies. As I thought, and I believed most people did the same way. But sometimes things are not what you think they are. Ben Ripley, a 12-year-old agent, who knew nothing about using any powerful weapons or strategies for defending himself while being aiming as a target for the assassins. Was he a good s...more
Kat Canavan
I didn't like this book. The main character (Ben) does nothing! He sits around fibbing that he has talent! The book is very boring until finally over 3/4 into the book stuff STARTS to happen. For a spy book I was expecting more action, less randomness. I would not recommend this book to anybody, and I have no idea why it is a nutmeg!
Lena
This book was interesting because my brother came home and he had this book. That night I just picked it up and started reading it! It was amazing my whole family loves to read we are readaholics. So for the next couple days Palmer and I kept stealing it from each other and reading when the other was away. We were done in a couple of days and we could not stop talking about it! We had both also read Belly Up which we both enjoyed also. Ben's story was awesome and I loved Erica. I liked how deep...more
Ethan
I thought that this was an amazing book. Though it wasn't exactly the kind of book that I had expected. Spy School is more of a complete action and battle scenes book than a actual "spy" story. I assumed it would be about kids chasing a bad guy and then using some kind of computer program to expel them from the area. Instead the kids just attacked the "bad guy" and imprisoned them through sheer force. I also thought that there really wasn't any suspense because I knew the organization had high-t...more
Danny
Spy School is simply a really light, funny novel. At first the writing seemed a bit too plain but the book soon shapes up to be a great adventure with endearing characters. Erica's age changes from 15 to 14 in the book but apart from that anomaly I love the detail. There were several quotable moments that made me laugh when I read them. The mystery was what a junior fiction mystery book should be like with twists, challenges and misdirection. The character interactions felt real and Ben was a li...more
Ms. Feigen's English 9 Classes Feigen
Thomas Hoong
September 3rd, 2014
Period 7th

“Spy School” is a fictional book written by Stuart Gibbs in 2012. Stuart himself claims that after watching his first James Bond movie at age seven, he could visualize himself as Jimmy Bond- the son of James Bond. Ever since then, he realized that the idea of a kid spy would be thrilling and hilarious. His intended audience ranged from ages 8 to 12 (mentioned on back of front cover). The 290 pages of text in the book seemed fairly short. Both me and my s...more
Nellie Otter
I really liked this book.
I liked the characters, the plot, the setting and the descriptions. Something I would change is the fact that there is slightly too much action, the main character gets attacked and saved and attacked and saved, too often and too quickly. I think this makes the story not believable. But overall I really liked the action and the funny bits. I would recommend this book to most people who like funny adventure books (WARNING: some minor cursing).
Ember Shane
Bought this book for my son who is 9 years old and in the 4th grade because I thought it would interest him that Ben, the protagonist, is a 12 year old boy who stumbles into spy school. I will say right off, that there are a few occurrences of words such as "ass" or "damn" in the novel in case that matters to you. I rarely notice language when I'm reading for myself, but as I try to provide my son with literature that is closer to his reading level, I definitely notice these things more.

Spy Sch...more
Walter Ip
Spy School by Stuart Gibbs is a mystery book about spies. A nerdy boy named Ben Ripley is sent to a spy school in Washington D.C. to become a CIA agent. But later on, he realizes that he was only sent to the spy school to be used as bait. There is a traitor at the school and he or she is trying to take over. Ben tries to find out who the traitor is with his friends and prove that he can be a spy and not just bait too. The characters seemed pretty realistic and credible to me. My favorite charact...more
Megan
I haven't been keeping up with what I read with the kids, or, for that matter, what the kids are reading. Madeleine outpaces me by far. However, I did pick this one up because I was curious.

I decided that she likely would quite like it, and, in a few years, William might, too. It started off fairly slow, and included a lot of guns for my taste (I guess particularly given that it is a kids book). However, the story took off, and I enjoyed some of the characters. There were a few good puzzles to b...more
Natalie G.
This book is about a boy named Benjamin Ripley who is a CIA agent in training. Benjamin thinks that spy school is going to be fun but, turns out to be the complete opposite. The setting is at the CIA Academy of Espionage, in Washington DC. The point of view is told by Benjamin Ripley. Some major characters are Benjamin, Erica, Alexander, and Murray.

I thought this book wasn't like any other book I've read before. It made me even think of how life would be if I were a secret agent. A strength ab...more
Alex Murphy
This book was fun funny and totally got me excited for the next one in the series. I really wish I got it as a strip too, or perhaps I'll have to get it from the library.

Ben got into spy school, half way through the year because of a 'sudden opening' his first few days are so crazy, he hasn't even had time to make friends before someone tries to kill him, twice. Using his wits, his friend Murry who is deliberately trying to fail spy school and a totally out of his league upperclassman named Eri...more
Joshua


Two for two, Mr. Gibbs... I even liked this book a touch more... Kind of a geek guy's counterpart to the Gallagher Girls, just plain fun, and the ending will keep you guessing, even though I had the culprit in my top three suspects... Sequels are coming!

Jeremiah Griff
Spy School is an amazing book on how any regular kid could become a tale of courage, mishaps, laughs, and more. It all starts when Ben Ripley gets home from school one day to find a C.I.A. agent at his home recruiting him for junior spy school. Presumably, Ben is recruited because of his innate math skills, but as Ben finds out in an amazing novel by Stuart Gibbs filled with twists, action, and industrial espionage around each corner, Ben sees that, as unordinary as it may seem to be recruited b...more
Cindy
I only read this book because it, too, was a Colorado Children's Book Award nominee for 2014. I am an elementary school librarian, so I like to read the books my kids are reading. I did it with my own children as they grew up, and discovered some wonderful stories along the way! So I took this home and read it before I put it out on the shelves. It was OK. Cute and clever. I absolutely can understand why it was nominated...first of all, it has characters and a story line that will appeal to boys...more
Marc Essindi
I think this book was so-so since it wasn't that entertaining in the beginning it is just this kid who hates school and is very good at coding so he gets recruited to the training camp for the CIA but there parents think it is summer school. So then he is at the camp learning how to become a spy and he learns karate and all that sort of stuff. Then something goes bad someone plants a bomb but they don't know who it is. What i said in the beginning about the story not getting really exciting till...more
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“that none of the locks on the toilet stalls in the common restroom worked.” 16 likes
“Welcome back, Ben,” Erica said. I started in surprise before realizing the voice was coming from inside my head. Alexander had slipped a two-way radio into my ear. There were lots of people out and about. The enemy had taken my cell phone, but I put my hand to my ear and pretended to be talking on one anyhow. No one gave me a second glance. Virtually everyone else was on a cell phone themselves. “Can you hear me?” I asked. “Loud and clear,” Erica replied. “Where are you?” “Still on campus, looking into things. But I need you to tail someone for me.” “Chip?” “No. I think he’s clean.” “What? But—” “I’ll explain later. Right now I need you to go after Tina. She’s the mole . . . and she’s on the move.” 1 likes
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