Author: Holly Black (@hollyblack)
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry
Release Date: February 8, 2012
Series: Curse Workers #1
The Other Books: Red Glove, Black Heart
Extras: Trailer, Series Website
Seek: Amazon, Goodreads
Cassel comes from a family of curse workers — people who have the power to change your emotions, your memories, your luck, by the slightest touch of their hands. And since curse work is illegal, they're all mobsters, or con artists. Except for Cassel. He hasn't got the magic touch, so he's an outsider, the straight kid in a crooked family. You just have to ignore one small detail — he killed his best friend, Lila, three years ago.
Ever since, Cassel has carefully built up a façade of normalcy, blending into the crowd. But his façade starts crumbling when he starts sleepwalking, propelled into the night by terrifying dreams about a white cat that wants to tell him something. He's noticing other disturbing things, too, including the strange behavior of his two brothers. They are keeping secrets from him, caught up in a mysterious plot. As Cassel begins to suspect he's part of a huge con game, he also wonders what really happened to Lila. Could she still be alive? To find that out, Cassel will have to out-con the conmen.
Holly Black has created a gripping tale of mobsters and dark magic where a single touch can bring love — or death — and your dreams might be more real than your memories.
You should… – Buy it!
Cover, Challenge Reading
Judge the Cover – The new covers look fun and eye-catching. To me, it seems like they changed the cover every time the next book came out. First it was the font, from the first book to the second book. Now it’s an entirely a new design. It makes me wonder why they decided to change them so much. To me, I am love with the first book cover. It goes very well with the theme of the story.
A Little Teaser – Here’s the essential truth about me: I killed a girl when I was fourteen. Her name was Lila, she was my best friend, and I loved her. I killed her anyway.
Review – I knew I was going to love this book, even though the only other books I’ve read from Holly are the Spiderwick Chronicles. I feel a little ashamed because Holly’s writing is brilliant. Well, at least, in this book, she is brilliant. I don’t know about her other series. Anyways, the reason I knew I was going to love this book, is because of the summary. It sounded like it was going to have a lot of mystery and fantasy tied into it. And it sure did.
I love it when books are told from a guy’s point of view instead of a girl’s. With so many paranormal books being told in a girl’s perspective, it’s sometimes hard to find a good book told from a boy’s perspective. Holly Black accomplished this. Cassel Sharpe is a very interesting mind to peer into. He’s like extremely smart. Well, he’s smart in conning people and lying. Hey, when your family is highly skilled on conning, what else are you going to know?
Did anyone else just want to smack
tell him everything? Because I did figure out a lot of things before he did.
However, it was fun this way. Some things did surprise me but reading about him
figuring things out, his voice is just so entertaining to read. He makes these
little comments here and there, and it feels like he’s really talking to you,
the reader. Those little comments made me smile and laugh, which is weird
because this is supposed to be a dark, mysterious tale.
Another thing, I thought was remarkable. The main character is not on the good side. For once, the character is on the bad side. At first he doesn’t know it, because he can’t remember anything. But once he starts figuring everything out, he doesn’t like what he has been doing.
The mystery and fantasy was also cool aspect. Mystery because we are trying to figure why his brothers are acting weird and what really happened to
Cassel’s crush Lila. Was she really murdered by him? Is
she even dead?
The fantasy part of it was so…awesomely weird. His family is so messed up. The only one I really liked was his grandfather. I thought his family was putting
Cassel at a lot of risk. They should have told him the
truth and kept it that way.
As for some of the other characters that were in the book. Sam and Daneca were both great side characters. I hope we get to see more of them in the sequel.
The ending was the biggest con ever, a lot of things happened that I didn't expect. After finishing the book, I can't stop thinking about everything.
I think I said enough on the first book without really ruining the story. Onto the next, which is Red Glove.
Author/Book News – The final book in the Curse Workers series is out already, titled Black Heart. As for Holly Black, she is working on The Coldest Girl in Coldtown which is a futuristic vampire tale, set to release in 2013. Another book releasing in 2013, titled Doll Bones, which doesn’t have a lot of information yet but it says on Goodreads that it’s about three kids who go on a journey to bury a doll that might be made out of human bones. Sounds like my type of book! And finally, some fantastic news, Holly Black is teaming up with Cassandra Clare (The Mortal Instruments) to co-write middle-grade fantasy series. First book is titled The Iron Trial and set to release in 2014. Read the news on the series |HERE|.