Keep Me Posted!

Sign me up for the latest news from Penguin Teen, including new books, special offers, and promotions.

8 of Fiction’s Boldest Undercover Women

SHARE

Let’s face it. We’ve all, at one point or another, daydreamed about being a spy. From the heart-pounding missions to the suspense of staying hidden in plain sight, there’s just something so exciting about the mystery, thrills, and risks of living undercover. Then again, there’s a lot of danger involved in taking on a new identity — what happens if you’re found out or if you grow attached to those you’re meant to infiltrate? For now, we’ll just leave the covert missions to the professionals, such as these eight fearless ladies who managed to keep their cool while keeping everything under wraps.

 

Sarah (Orphan, Monster, Spy by Matt Killeen)

Sarah, a fifteen-year-old Jewish girl living in constant peril in Holocaust-era Germany, is approached by a mysterious man after her mother is shot at a Nazi checkpoint. Not soon after, Sarah receives her first mission as the newest recruit of a secret resistance against the Third Reich: to go undercover as the daughter of a Nazi official at an elite school. Sarah is forced to confront her greatest enemy and her greatest fear as she attempts to befriend the daughter of a scientist who is designing bombs that threaten every city in Western Europe. Dauntless and empowered by a desire to stop the fiercest evil in history, Sarah is not to be underestimated.

 

Gracie Hart (Miss Congeniality)

Miss Congeniality

We can’t believe it’s been eighteen (!!!) years since the release of the funny, heartfelt, totally badass action-comedy Miss Congeniality. Sandra Bullock plays Gracie Hart, a Special Agent for the F.B.I. who goes undercover as a Miss United States contestant. Posing as Miss New Jersey, Gracie must locate and diffuse a bomb threat that is set to take place at the beauty pageant, protecting all of the competitors and audience members. The one hurdle? Grace is a total tomboy who shudders at the phrase “lady-like”.

 

Iden Versio and Seyn Marana (Star Wars Battlefront II: Inferno Squad by Christie Golden)

Much of the Star Wars saga is told from the point of view of the Rebellion, the “good guys” we are meant to root for. In Christie Golden’s Inferno Squad (a companion to last year’s much-hyped console game Star Wars Battlefront II) however, the story unfolds from the perspective of the Inferno Squad, a team of elite Imperial soldiers set to infiltrate an extremist faction of partisans known as the Dreamers. Iden Versio, an unparalleled soldier and daughter of a highly feared and ruthless admiral, and Seyn Marana, a master sharpshooter and cryptologist, are two members of the Squad. These two women, relentlessly committed to their cause, are forced to confront the dangerous realities of going undercover — from growing sentimentality towards the “enemy” to the near impossible task of keeping up appearances.

 

June Iparis (Legend series by Marie Lu)

Legend‘s June Iparis is a teenage prodigy. Born to elite parents in the wealthiest part of the Republic, she is groomed for military excellence and leadership from a very young age. But when her brother is murdered, June vows to find his killer and bring them to justice — no matter what danger may loom. Undercover in the slums and streets of the Republic, June finds far more than what she bargained for when she meets Day, the top suspect and the nation’s most wanted. Together, June and Day begin to uncover the insidious lies of their government and set out on a course for revolution.

 

Peggy Carter (Agent Carter)

While you may know Margaret “Peggy” Carter from her time working alongside Captain America, she’s very much a hero in her own right. A member of the Strategic Scientific Reserve in the years during and after WWII, Peggy has to be quick-thinking and fierce to survive each assignment. The real danger comes along with Peggy’s clandestine side-job — helping the framed Howard Stark locate and dispose of stolen weaponry before it can be used against American citizens. She goes undercover quite a few times in the series – from a health inspector to an old Hollywood blonde bombshell – and fully commits to each role, putting her life at risk for the sake of her nation and her mission.

 

Mariko (Flame in the Mist by Renée Ahdieh)

Flame in the Mist’s Mariko is a brilliant alchemist held back by her gender. Though she is cunning and well-trained by her samurai father, she is routinely underestimated and valued only for the political benefits she can bring to her family by marrying Minamoto Raiden, the son of the emperor’s favorite consort. She barely survives an attack on her life as she travels to the palace for her upcoming wedding and is forced to go undercover as a peasant boy to escape death and find her assassins. Mariko then sets out to infiltrate this sinister gang of bandits, known only as Black Clan, and find those responsible for the ambush.

 

Debbie, Lou, Daphne, Amita, Tammy, Eight Ball, Constance, and Rose (Ocean’s 8)

Ocean's Eight

Unlike most of the other ladies on this list, not every master of disguise uses her skills for good. In this spin-off of the classic Ocean’s series, a new all-female team of con artists set out on a jewel heist. The one catch? The necklace they have their eyes on is not only located at one of the globe’s most highly-spectated galas — it’s around the neck of the one of the biggest celebrities in the world. Each of the eight criminal masterminds must go undercover at the event and use their individual set of skills to achieve this goal — without getting caught.

 

Diana Prince (Wonder Woman) 

What could possibly be more undercover than an alter-ego? Diana is Princess of Themyscira, an island nation entirely populated by a race of warrior women known as the Amazons. When she hears of war in the outside world, the heroic, warrior-trained Diana forsakes all she knows to leave her home and stop Ares, the God of War, from threatening innocent lives. When she arrives in Europe, however, Diana finds her armor, tiara, and enormous broadsword draw far too much attention. She takes the guise of a secretary, with horn-rimmed glasses and a wide-brimmed hat, to fit in with the hordes of women around her. As the years go on, Diana shifts her disguise to better suit the modern era, posing as an antiquities dealer at the Louvre.

 

 

 

 

 

Craving more female-led, action-packed reads? Check out our list of 10 Fierce Ladies Who Prove that Women are the Ultimate Warriors.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#Bookish

Read the First Excerpt from Strange Days!

Basically, Strange Days is the contemporary fiction and sci-fi combo we all need in our lives. Alex Mata doesn’t want to worry about rumors of alien incursions–he’d rather just skate and tag and play guitar. But when he comes home to find an alien has murdered his parents, he’s forced to confront a new reality: … Continued
See More

These book series are ending in 2018 and we’re not okay

It’s been a stellar year for shelves everywhere. Games were hacked, thrones were claimed, and—let’s face it—tears were shed.   And now, it’s time to say goodbye to seven of these beloved series as they take their bows (…and by “say goodbye” we mean re-read obsessively).   Warcross   It’s okay, we all cried too. A … Continued
See More

Every Book Coming Out in October 2018!

It’s time for Autumn to Fall and with the change of season come a change in To-Be-Read lists everywhere! As October 2018 rolls in and we prepare for colder weather and spookier decor, we’re happy to provide you with the best new books hitting shelves!   10/2: A Map of Days by Ransom Riggs – Miss Peregrine … Continued
See More

7 Characters You DON’T Want at Thanksgiving

We’re all familiar with the classic party crasher of Thanksgiving. Sometimes it’s an uncle who shows up last minute and spends half of Thanksgiving telling obscure stories from his days in that rock band. Sometimes it’s your sister who totally forgets what time dinner starts and moseys in after all the yams are gone. However, we can … Continued
See More

Last Minute Bookish Costumes for Lazy People

We all know how this goes. You spend most of October binge-watching scary movies, going to corn mazes, and freaking out over pumpkin spice anything. Then, suddenly BOOM. Halloween is actually here and OOPS you forgot to get a costume. Panicking? No worries, we’ve got you covered.   Emika Chen – Warcross   Grab some hair … Continued
See More

The Sisters Before Misters Book We’ve All Been Waiting for Is HERE

“They were a wall of clenched teeth and clasped fists, of blood hot with fire and fight, of voices barely cinched in throats.” FUN FACT: Today is International Talk Like a Pirate Day. That’s right. It’s almost as underrated as National Fresh Spinach Day (March 26!) and other misunderstood annual treasures. You’re welcome. (*cough* we … Continued
See More

These Doggos Think You Should Be Writing

‘Tis the month of November. Other known as the month writers everywhere set out to write a full novel in 30 days, panic halfway through, briefly discover newfound hope around 35,000 words in, realize they’re exhausted, then eventually claw their way to the end of the story via way too much caffeine. The whole ordeal … Continued
See More

14 Powerful Quotes From GLIMMER OF HOPE

Seven months ago, students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School led a crowd of approximately one million people calling for an end to gun violence in the epic March for Our Lives. Their movement took over the internet, it took over social media, it took over the news cycle. And that was just the beginning. … Continued
See More

Reasons to Re-Read The Reader This Fall!

As the release date for The Storyteller (aka final book in the The Reader trilogy, aka the series Traci Chee has BLESSED our shelves with) rapidly approaches, the time has come for a re-read (or, if you’re new, just a read!)   Now, we could tell you about why we love this trilogy ourselves, but … Continued
See More

Renée Ahdieh Just Made a HUGE Announcement

So a few days ago, Renée Ahdieh, author of The Wrath and the Dawn and Flame in the Mist (among several other must-reads), *might* have hinted at some special news coming our way pretty soon.   Naturally, everyone couldn’t help but speculate.   What could it be? A movie adaption? A special edition of something? … Continued
See More
BACK TO TOP