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(Sekret #2)

3.67  ·  Rating details ·  346 ratings  ·  75 reviews
The dramatic sequel to Sekret, this psychic Cold War espionage thriller follows Yulia to Washington, DC, where she fights to discover the truth about her family without losing control of her mind.

My mind is mine alone.

Life in Washington, D.C., is not the safe haven Yulia hoped for when she risked everything to flee communist Russia. Her father is reckless and aloof, and Va
Kindle Edition, 335 pages
Published April 7th 2015 by Roaring Brook Press
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Lynn It's absolutely vital! Sekret develops the main character, with all her experiences and fears, and forms the stage for all the events that follow in S…moreIt's absolutely vital! Sekret develops the main character, with all her experiences and fears, and forms the stage for all the events that follow in Skandal. Without this background, the reader is unlikely to get to grips with the novel. This is a rather complex political thriller, and it will be most disappointing if you are left feeling that the story is two-dimensional. Do yourself a big favour, read Sekret first!!!(less)

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Dec 31, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015-releases
***Review posted on The Eater of Books! blog***

Skandal by Lindsay Smith
Book Two of the Sekret series
Publisher: Roaring Brook Press
Publication Date: April 7, 2015
Rating: 3 stars

Summary (from Goodreads):

The dramatic sequel to Sekret, this psychic Cold War espionage thriller follows Yulia to Washington, DC, where she fights to discover the truth about her family without losing control of her mind.

My mind is mine alone.

Life in Washington, D.C., is not the safe haven Yulia hoped for when she risked e
Gabi Graceffo

"The words ring through me, clear and calming like a distant carillon. Shostakovich recedes to the background; the psychedelic record on the record player melts around us into cool liquid sound. It does not touch me. My fears for Mama and Zhenya cannot reach me. My mind is mine alone. The scrubbers cannot scratch at me here. My mind is mine alone."


So, we've made to America. All the bloodshed, Party politics, and psychic mind games are behind us...right? Wrong.

This book picks up pretty much w
Sep 01, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Ugh so good I missed my subway stop so actually I'm a little mad about that but you should read this anyway because it's really freaking good. ...more
Oct 11, 2015 rated it really liked it
3.75 stars! Definitely an enjoyable book, but I did like Sekret better!
Danielle (Love at First Page)
An empty mind is a safe mind.

If you're familiar with Sekret, the first book in Lindsay Smith's historical-fantasy-espionage duology, you remember that Yulia was once a psychic spy for the KGB. Her ability is to hear people's thoughts and access their memories by way of touch. She and other teens like her were controlled by a master puppeteer, a Russian politician who wanted to go to war with the U.S. Who still wants that, in order to purport Soviet Union supremacy and communist ideology. Yu
Mar 27, 2015 rated it really liked it
I have really enjoyed this duology. I like the mix of physic powers with the history of the Cold War. I enjoy historical fiction and I enjoy paranormal, so the mix here was really great for me.

Yulia is a very strong character and I enjoyed watching her deal with integrating into a new culture, dealing with a father who is nothing like what she remembers and a new job working for the CIA. The odds are stacked against this girl, but she stubbornly plods onward towards her goals.

We meet a host of n
Lindsay Smith
Apr 09, 2013 added it  ·  (Review from the author)
Shelves: i-wrote
SKANDAL cover is live! And a tentative release date: 4/7/15. I hope to have the synopsis to share soon!
Sara (Freadom Library)
This review was originally posted at

Check out my series review here:

Plot – 4 out of 5 stars
exciting, intriguing, suspenseful, full of action and mystery, new setting and new characters, lots of twists and turns, a lot more emotionally deep than the first, really intense

Writing Style – 4 out of 5 stars
historically accurate, elaborate, descriptive, detailed, vivid, poetic, emotional, precise, intense

Mar 17, 2015 rated it really liked it
The world of Skandal, while not in Russia anymore, was equally fascinating in this continuation of Yulia's story. The setting of Cold War era Washington D.C. might not be the USSR, but it was still full of just as many dangerous plots, double-crosses, and political landmines. Yulia has been put into service with the CIA and is having to learn English and adjust to a new life all while working as a spy for the Americans. The team of Psychic spies on the US side are a very interesting group. Every ...more
**I received this book for free from Roaring Brook Press/Macmillan Children's in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!! This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.**

*Genre* Young Adult, Psychic, Historical, Espionage, Thriller
*Rating* 4.0

*My Thoughts*

*My past cannot hurt me now. My future cannot stop me now. All I have is now."

Skandal is the conclusion to the Sekret duology. The story takes place 3 months after 17-year old Yulia Andreevna Chernina and her boyfrie
Dec 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
It's been a while since I read the first book so a lot of the beginning was confusing. However, I still really enjoy the writing style of Lindsay Smith. I love that she found a way to have a unique take on young people with supernatural powers, despite 90% of YA seemingly being about the same thing. I think it really helped that it was not set in the 21st century, though I wish the setting had not switched to America in this book.

Not much more to say as of course this is a sequela and reviewing
Kathy Martin
Mar 01, 2015 rated it really liked it
It's 1964. Yulia has escaped from the Soviet Union and is with her father and her boyfriend Valentin. They are working for the CIA but working for someone who is suspicious of them because they are Soviets. Yulia sees some of the values of being in the United States but she is overwhelmed by the differences of life in the USA. Her father is different than she remembers; she is worried about the mother she left behind; and she is worried that Valentin's demons will overcome him.

In the larger pi
Didn't like quite as much as the first book but enjoyable nonetheless. No love triangle at all, thankfully. Settled end, but opened enough for another installment, if there was one. Full review to come. ...more
Mar 28, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2015
This series is so fantastic, and Smith devotes as much attention to 1960s America as she did to the Soviet Union in the previous book. The characters are so well-drawn, especially Yulia, and the setting really bolsters the plot.
Oct 12, 2014 rated it did not like it
I'm sorry, but I have to DNF this. It's so freaking slow. I got to page 100 in 6 days after constantly falling asleep reading it. There's nothing that makes me want to keep reading. ...more
Gabe Novoa
Nov 12, 2014 added it
Shelves: young-adult
Action-packed and very enjoyable sequel to SEKRET! :)
Loved that ending. More to come!
Dec 20, 2015 added it
Jan 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
It's been almost a year and a half since I read the first book, Sekret, and I wish I could remember the events of that book a little better.

Much of my review for Sekret also applies to Skandal:

- I'm really impressed by the historical research that formed the basis for what appears to be a supernatural novel. Smith's author note in the last book mentioned that the premise of these books is based off of real-life Soviet government attempts to develop psychic talents for espionage purposes. Similar
If you'll recall, I quite liked Sekret. It was fun and action packed and helped me with my minor reading slump. I confess, though, I knew I wouldn't like this book as much as I liked the first. I wasn't looking forward to picking it up, but I decided to anyway because I didn't know what else to read and I figured this would be fun and action packed enough.

However, Skandal didn't grab me the same way Sekret did. Maybe it's because I thought (and honestly still think) that Sekret didn't really ne
Aug 28, 2017 rated it liked it
Overall, this was a pretty good series. I liked it, but I don't know that I would want to re-read it.

Yulia grows up a lot in this book. One big lesson is that her parent's are human and don't know everything. I liked how the author showed the racism in that time period and how it affected Winnie and Cindy (they are sisters, but look different from each other).

My biggest criticism of the book is that the author didn't have more a confrontation between Yulia and Rostov. He was this overwhelmingly
Mihaela Blalock
Feb 27, 2021 rated it liked it
Ok, so I am not crazy about this series but I also did not dislike it entirely. As a linguist though, I don't see how it is possible after 3 months of learning a language to become proficient to the level of translating medical research articles. After 3 months to be able to use past perfect correctly "is that the thing you were surprised he hadn't told me?" is quite impossible. After learning that many languages myself, being able to grasp the concept of this verbal tense and know when to use i ...more
vincent ☆
Apr 06, 2018 rated it liked it
Just some thoughts, it was an ok book:

Our protagonist Yulia is learning English, correct? Well then why is she using complex words?? I feel like her learning of English just kinda ~went away~ after the first 20 pages. English is a hard language to learn, so why is it portrayed as easy in the book?

Also, the plot was very slow in the middle and then suddenly everything is tied up neatly in the last 15 pages, which was annoying. (Confession: i didn't finish the first one! Which really didn't matter
Aug 05, 2017 rated it really liked it
This was a great sequel to Sekret! I actually liked this one better; I think it was because Yuila seemed more settled in this book. I loved how Smith had the era of the 1960s United States perfectly sculpted, as well as Yulia figuring out English and the espionage was so good! This one felt more intense, and there were parts of the book where I was like, did that really just happen?
Overall, an amazing duology! Totally recommend!
Apr 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was amazing! It is now one of my favorites, along with the first book Skandal. I would recommend this book to anyone who loves to read about physics, spies, and the Cold War or just loves a great book.
Ben Rand
Feb 10, 2019 rated it it was ok
Should have read the 1st book in the series I guess.
Feb 11, 2019 rated it did not like it

There was no character development (or characterization in any way... nothing stands out about Yulia) and I didn't care about the context at all. So glad to be done with it!
Jan 13, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Yay! The close of that chapter for Yulia’s life.
Erin Arkin
Jun 25, 2014 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars

Skandal is the second book of the Sekret series by Lindsay Smith and I thought it wrapped up Yulia’s story in a good way.

The book picks up with Yulia living in Washington D.C. with her father and Valentin. Having left her brother and mother behind, Yulia is constantly worried about them and how they are being used by the KGB but she is also unsure about her place within the CIA. She has been placed within a group to help her learn more about her psychic power so she can in turn, help t
Jul 30, 2014 rated it liked it
Although I had a bit of a hard time visualizing the effects of the physicic and mind-bending abilities of the characters, it may have been my own fault as Smith seems to do her best describing these effects in most cases drawing parallels and comparisons (ie: feeling like trying to breathe underwater, etc)., and while I realize that it was crucial to the storyline, there seemed to be so much of it throughout the story that I felt a bit exhausted trying to visualize all of it myself while reading ...more
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Lindsay is the author of multiple novels for young adults, including Sekret and A Darkly Beating Heart, as well as the comic series Black Swan. She is the showrunner and lead writer for Serial Box's The Witch Who Came In From the Cold, a Publisher's Weekly Best Book of 2017. Her short stories and comics have appeared in the anthologies A Tyranny of Petticoats, Strange Romance Vol. 3, and Toil & Tr ...more

Other books in the series

Sekret (3 books)
  • Sekret (Sekret, #1)
  • Doppel

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