BookBug's World…

reading, writing, crocheting, living….

“The Spy Within” – by J.A. Cipriano ——> excerpt & review

Leave a comment


A while ago I did a review and  the tour of the Book #1 in the Meet Abby Banks series by J.A. Cipriano.

Book # 2 – “The Spy Within” is just as packed with action, blowing up places, running away from enemy, from friends, from everything… – as the first one was. But it goes beyond that. Abby turns into kind of a “supergirl” with all the abilities and knowledge “uploaded” into her brain. She can do things she couldn’t even imagine she could before 🙂 In the meantime Abby tries to justify and understand the rules, although there appear to be none, and she does not really know whom to trust. Her best friend from “the life before” turns out to be her enemy, and a person she treated as an enemy turns out to be her dad… He also saves her life…

She has to reevaluate whom to trust, which proves to be almost impossible to do when almost anyone can be turned into an enemy by the powerful Agency (who can be in control of their brains by the means of flit… complicated, I know.  Got to read the book! 🙂 )

It’s jungle out there, and she has to go through it to survive, AND save the world!


chapter 4


“We wondered if you would show up here,” the agent with the huge, ridiculous smile on his face said. He wasn’t very tall, maybe five and a half feet tall and had short buzzed blond hair. He leaned forward on the metal table with his elbows. It made the cuffs of his cheap black button-up fall down to reveal wrists the color of milk. “Agent Phillips told us about your ‘interrogation’ but we didn’t think you’d actually come here. We didn’t think you were that dumb.”

“Glad to prove you wrong,” I replied, looking down at my hands. They were bolted to the table so I couldn’t move my wrists. My feet were no better. My ankles were shackled to the chair I was in, which was, in turn, welded to the floor. There wasn’t anything else in the solid steel room. At least, nothing I could use to escape, or better yet, as a weapon.

In fact, if I hadn’t seen the agent enter through a door, I wouldn’t have even known there was one. It had opened and closed like a magical portal in the wall, leaving no trace that it had ever been there.

“What’s your play, exactly, Abby?” he asked, bushy blond eyebrows snaking up on his face. “We’ve tried to get you to come in for the last several weeks, and you just stroll in here? What gives?”

“You guys shot Stephen.” The words sort of tumbled out of me before I could stop them. “You sent a killer robot after me, one that made it so I had to beat up an eight-year-old girl…”

“So you’re here for revenge? To stop us? What exactly?” He shrugged and stood up, his own chair scraping across the metal floor. “Explain how coming here works in your twisted little brain.” He gestured at me. “You’re sitting there in your bra and panties. You have no weapons. You have no way out. Even if you tried something, this room would fill with gas and knock you out before you could even blink.”

“The play is simple,” I said, looking up at him and smiling sweetly. “I don’t need to blink.”

The restraints holding me in place opened, releasing me. The man backpedaled, a look of horror filling his face as he stumbled backward over his chair. He hit the ground with a clatter that reminded me of someone dropping a platter at a restaurant.

I stood slowly, my pink hair draped over the front of my face. I took a step toward him. He crawled backward on his hands, which was a little crazy because he was supposed to be a trained agent, right? Weren’t they all bad asses?

“If you’re waiting for the gas, well, let’s just say it isn’t happening.” I dropped down next to the agent and grabbed him by his collar, pulling him up toward me.

“How?” he asked, eyes wide in fright.

I jerked his keycard from his belt. “Don’t worry, no one actually knows I’m here. See, when I abducted Phillips, I actually took a bunch of his biometrics and implanted them in a chip in my palm. I added some code to, well, put me in isolation and delete the record of it.”

“You mean…” he swallowed as I swiped his card on the door. It opened with a hiss. “You chose me? Why?”

“I didn’t choose you. I just told the system to send the most junior analyst who had access to the files I wanted to see.” I exited the room and stepped into the empty hallway. “Congratulations, it’s your lucky day.” The door slid shut, locking him inside.

To be fair, it had been a little more complicated than that, and technically, Stephen had given me the chip. We’d just needed a little biometric information to get the ball rolling since no one was going to be letting him inside.

“You think you’re so clever, don’t you?” Donovan asked, eyes roaming over my mostly naked body. “And I like the new look, very— down-on-her-luck hooker.”

“I am clever,” I replied to my hallucination as I pulled open the door to the next interrogation room. Sitting inside was a cart full of supplies. Ah, the joys of government drones who follow orders no matter how absurd.

A few minutes later, I was dressed in clothing that fit and armed with a machine gun and a taser. As I looked around the tiny room, I barely resisted the urge to spout off a snappy one-liner. Who would hear it anyway? My hallucination? Pass.

Both books (#1 & #2) available on


About the Author

J.A CiprianoWhen J. A. Cipriano was in second grade, his teacher gave everyone in class a journal to write down whatever they wanted. Their first subject was to write about something they didn’t like. J. A. chose to write about why he didn’t like writing. His reasoning was simple. He had bad handwriting. Even then, he was destined to be an engineer due to his messy scrawl […]

He kept writing little stories, year after year, and in sixth grade, won another contest. In seventh grade, he broke his arm and got the cast signed by both Dean Koontz and Stan Lee. It is, by far, the coolest cast he’s owned. That was about the time he found video games and anime. His writing turned mostly toward fanfiction until about ninth grade when he wrote his first novel, a small book about twenty thousand words called Revelations. In sophomore year, he wrote two more books to complete the trilogy because he saw Star Wars that year and learned trilogies were the cool thing to do.

He rewrote Revelations during his senior year, and his wife swears it is the best thing he’s written. J.A. is not so sure. Every time he reads it, he cringes, but then again, he hates everything he writes, so there is that.

It was about that time, he got heavily involved in a fanfiction writing group, but that isn’t one hundred percent accurate. It was a world based on a popular anime but everything was created especially for this world. It made it so that every story someone wrote was unique.

Imagine writing a Star Wars novel set 1,000 years after A New Hope, where everything that happened was a distant memory and you get the idea. You have the force, some distant memories of the past, and that’s pretty much it.

He wrote about a million words (863K to be exact) for them before he decided to do his own thing. He wrote another novel. He put it in a drawer. He wrote another one that eventually became the basis for The Hatter is Mad. His next novel was Kill It With Magic, his first real novel. It’s not bad, but it’s bumpy. This is unfortunate because the books get loads better as the series progresses.

Since then, he’s written six more novels, four of which are in the Lillim Callina Series, and one in the Abby Banks series. The other is stuck in a drawer for time undetermined. He’s writing his next book now which is about werewolves fighting mummies in Ancient Egypt. After that, he will move onto Abby Banks 2. The Spy Within will come out in June or July.

J.A. also has three chinchillas. Two of them are grey, and because of this, they are named Slate and Cadmium. The third is named Jet because he’s black, and Jet is old English for black. See, creative. He also has a cat named Turtle. This does pose problems for his two-year-old from time to time.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s