Title: The School Spy (Ella at Eden #5)
Author: Laura Sieveking
Publisher: Scholastic Australia
Published: 1st August 2021
Synopsis: There’s a new girl in Ella’s class and she is all kinds of mean. Even though Ella tries to give her a chance, she is making life difficult for all the Eden girls. To make matters worse, there’s a stranger in the school who is clearly up to something. Is Ella’s beloved Eden College in danger? And if it is, how can one girl save an entire school from disaster?
Ella is back at Eden for a new term, and there’s a new girl amongst them Pacifica Selwyn-Parker, and she’s starting to take over the school. From forcing Portia and Mercedes out of their friendship group with Saskia, to getting away with things that none of the other girls would, Ella, and her friends, Zoe, Grace, and Violet, together with Portia and Mercedes, are starting to get suspicious. Pacifica’s arrival coincides with the arrival of someone who has the teachers on edge and starts rumours about Eden becoming a Selwyn school, and losing everything that makes it Eden. So Ella sets about doing whatever she can to find out what is going on – and even as Pacifica does all she can to undermine the school, Ella will do her best to find a way to show what makes Eden truly special.
Again, Ella and her friends celebrate the arts and individuality in this story, the fifth in the Ella at Eden series. These books are a great continuation of the Ella stories that start with Meet Ella and see her at various ages for all reading levels – so those who start with Meet Ella or Ella and Olivia can grow with Ella and enjoy her stories and the character for many years. In book five, we have started a new term in Ella’s first year at Eden. It is winter, so there is a chill in the air and in the words, giving the story an atmosphere that helps create the story to come.
The fifth Ella book, aimed at middle grade readers, is full of fun and friendship, and some lovely scenes with Ella and the girls she doesn’t usually get on with appearing to become closer to being friends than in previous books, especially Saskia. Again, it is a celebration of friendship, working together and not making people feel bad for making mistakes that anyone could have made if they had been caught in a similar situation. It is a fun read whilst encouraging kids to find their voice, speak up and stand up for those they might not always think about, or those who might come across as not needing that sort of help.
I loved going back to Ella’s world, and find it a fun series, and eagerly await each new book to come out. They are a fun, light read for me in between much of the heavier reading I do in my reviewing, so it is really nice to have these sorts of books to go to as well when I need a break from that, or just want something quick and light (for me) to reset my reading after many long books. Bring on more Ella!