by Holly Black
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(available as Kindle/Nook and Audio editions)Audiobook borrowed from the librarySynopsis from Goodreads
NOTE: There are spoilers here
for those who have not read
the first book in the series, White Cat!
Curses and cons. Magic and the mob. In Cassel Sharpe’s world, they go together. Cassel always thought he was an ordinary guy, until he realized his memories were being manipulated by his brothers. Now he knows the truth—he’s the most powerful curse worker around. A touch of his hand can transform anything—or anyone—into something else.
That was how Lila, the girl he loved, became a white cat. Cassel was tricked into thinking he killed her, when actually he tried to save her. Now that she’s human again, he should be overjoyed. Trouble is, Lila’s been cursed to love him, a little gift from his emotion worker mom. And if Lila’s love is as phony as Cassel’s made-up memories, then he can’t believe anything she says or does.
When Cassel’s oldest brother is murdered, the Feds recruit Cassel to help make sense of the only clue—crime-scene images of a woman in red gloves. But the mob is after Cassel too—they know how valuable he could be to them. Cassel is going to have to stay one step ahead of both sides just to survive. But where can he turn when he can’t trust anyone—least of all, himself?
Love is a curse and the con is the only answer in a game too dangerous to lose.
The way the first book ended, I have to admit that I was kind of shocked that this one starts off with Cassel helping his mother grift her way down the Atlantic City strip. In fact, that he is able to spend time with ANY of his family members outside of his grandfather pretty much floored me, but Cassel seems to have a deeply pragmatic way of looking at the world. Fortunately, school’s about to start up again and I think I was as happy as he was when the severly dysfunctional family time Cassel spends with his mom comes to an end and he returns to Wallingford Academy.
But it wouldn’t be Cassel’s life if senior year equated to the good life. Instead, Lila, the girl Cassel has loved since he was a kid, the girl he had been tricked into thinking he had killed, has joined him at Wallingford Academy, because his mother has cursed her to love him and Lila just can’t stay away. At first it might seem like this is the answer to a young boy’s dream, but like all things that are unnaturally forced to be, there’s something spoiled and rotten at it’s core and Cassel’s to wise to the ways of Working to settle for rhinestones when he’s already seen the diamonds. Ah…the angst.
But there’s so much more to love in this second installment of the Curse Workers than thwarted love. Tensions are brewing between the Workers and the non-Workers and Cassel and his friends are getting caught up in some of the politics of how this will ultimately play out. Also, Cassel’s brother was murdered, and there are no shortage of people who would have wanted that to happen, including Cassel himself. And this time, sussing out the killer is a lot harder than it was in the first book! And I have to say, Cassel comes off a lot smarter in this book to. This boy is definitely, “smart as the devil and twice as handsome!”
The strong character and world building that Holly Black brought to White Cat are back again in Red Glove with a vengeance and this time, the cliffhanger will leave you desperate for the next installment. Unfortunately, that’s not coming out until 2012!!
I give it 5 out of 5 books
Narrated by Jesse Eisenberg
length: 7 hrs and 5 mins
unabridged audioboook at audible
Now go and get lost…in a book!