Best Fiction for Young Adults (#BFYA2022) Featured Review of The Secret Life of Kitty Granger by G.D. Falksen

The Secret Life of Kitty Granger Cover Art

The Secret Life of Kitty Granger by G.D. Falksen
Lerner / Carolrhoda Lab
Publication Date: March 2, 2021
ISBN: 978-1541597966

Kitty is an unordinary, autistic, 16-year-old British teenager living in the 1960’s London East End. Kitty is offered the chance to work as a spy for Her Majesty’s government against fascist agents in England, and she soon finds out that the things that made her different (like hyper-awareness of the world around her) could make her a spy. Stumbling into the Cold War spy game, Kitty has gone from being an outsider to being a part of a team trying to protect their nation.

Falksen has crafted a story with all the traditional spy gear that people who have watched James Bond films are used to seeing, yet with a very different type of person using them. Unlike the confident 007, Kitty is an average, struggling teen, who by chance is given an opportunity to do something bigger than herself. In the story, the things that make her an outsider are used as strengths as Kitty works to protect the nation. A lead character that is very relatable to teens and well-paced writing that takes the reader back to the swinging 1960s in London make The Secret Life of Kitty Granger into a great historical fiction spy thriller.

Kitty Granger is a good pick for those who liked the Alex Rider series by Anthony Horowitz and the Gallagher Girls series by Ally Carter. Teens who enjoy the Spy Kids movie series and the far grittier Amazon Prime series, Hanna, will also find much to love here. 

Lindsay Bailey

Other Nominated Titles

  • Six Crimson Cranes by Elizabeth Lim (July 6, 2021)

The Selected Lists teams read throughout the year in search of the best titles published in their respective categories. Once a book is suggested (either internally or through the title suggestion form), it must pass through a review process to be designated an official nomination. 

Each week, the teams feature a review of one of the officially nominated titles. Additional titles to receive this designation are listed as well. At year’s end, the team will curate a final list from all nominated titles and select a Top Ten. The previous years’ lists are available on The Hub.