Thursday, May 13, 2021

Enter the Shadowy World of Spies and Espionage with Nat Geo Kids' TOP SECRET! [Review & Giveaway]

My thoughts: 
I can just imagine how intrigued and fascinated my own children would have been had this book been available when they were growing up. Mysterious and hidden secretive things and ways of behaving are always an allure to kids. Well, if we admit it, grown ups as well. Else, why in the world would the James Bond 007 series been so fascinating and other spy stories.

National Geographic has this engaging system of presenting a lot of information in a limited amount of space and in the process stimulating the reader's mind so much that he or she continues to pursue the subject via other sources.

In TOP SECRET! not only does the reader learn about spies and their methodology from times past but they have the opportunity to pursue code breaking themselves. And the book also entails hidden secrets in the world about us that are not part of the game of spying. Example: a huge hidden cave in Vietnam that actually has trees growing in it. Can you imagine?

I know just the youngster to whom I'm going to gift this over-size book jam packed with fascinating information. 

About the book: The world of spies, codes and cover-ups is always a topic of fascination for kids and playing "secret agent" with siblings and friends is a great way to give children a break from screens and get them engaging their imaginations.   The world of espionage is also a "stealthy" way to hone observation skills and encourage an interest in STEM topics, like the technology behind the gadgets, the science behind invisible ink, and the engineering feats of secret rooms and compartments.  This spring, National Geographic Kids Books is debuting Top Secret -- a new book for secret agents in training with nearly 200 pages filled with the latest intel on the world's most classified cases, top secret truths, and cryptic curiosities you could ever hope to get your fingerprints on. 

From mastering escape and evasion techniques, to crafting the perfect disguise, building a gadget on the fly or decoding secret intel, Top Secret: Spies, Codes, Capers, Gadgets and Classified Cases Revealed (National Geographic Kids Books, ages 8-12,  April 2021, Hardcover, 192 pages) takes recruits beyond the page and out into the shadow world of espionage and all things clandestine, where “all is not what it seems,” including:

  • The ins and outs of international espionage
  • Spy agencies across the globe
  • Clandestine Dos and Don'ts (DO: Use Dead Drops, Think on Your Feet, Remember Everything! DONT: Break Cover, Trust Anyone, Admit to Anything!) 
  • Fascinating profiles of history-making spies, like, "The Limping Lady" -- World War II's most dangerous spy -- and an interview with Lindsay Moram, a real-life agent of espionage for the CIA (retired 2003) 
  • Hands-on how-to's, including: a step-by-step guide to setting up your own spy network and detailed info on how to make your own disguises, create fingerprint kits, engineer a deck of cards with a secret compartment, design rearview spy glasses, and mix up some invisible ink for writing secret messages
  • Bold secret missions -- like how the CIA stole a Soviet spacecraft -- and gave it right back!
  • Gadgets, tools of the tradecraft and surveillance equipment  
  • Tips for uncovering secrets and hidden messages that are all around you -- in advertising, at amusement parks, in video games, on cash -- they are everywhere!
  • Code-cracking of secret messages hidden throughout the book
  • Cold cases and hidden places, cool disguises and wicked surprises, menacing mysteries, undiscovered histories, and so much more!
Begins May 13
Ends June 8 @ 12:01 a.m. EDT
Open to USA addresses only.
DISCLOSURE: I was provided a complimentary copy to facilitate a review. Opinions are mine, alone and are freely given. Winner's copy is provided and shipped directly to the winner by MMPublicity or publisher. Chat With Vera is not responsible for lost or misdirected prizes.


  1. I have frequently read and shared National Geographic Kids books. Kids and adults love these books with their interesting topics and great photos and illustrations.

    allibrary (at) aol (dot) com

  2. My kids love the Nat Geo books! We personally love the animal ones but any of them are nice and we learn from them all!

  3. My grandson loves National Geographic books, especially, the Weird but True series.

  4. I have bought National Geographicbook before. My great great nephew told me on one of his visit to WV he wanted me to send him books on dinosaurs. I did and he loves going through the books and when he wants to know more he gets his mommy to read it to him.

  5. YES! We like the almanacs!


  6. The grand kids like these books.

  7. I have a National Geographic Kids Book on Ocean Creatures and it has the best pictures and the content is explained in language most kids can understand.


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