Friday, March 11, 2011

Review: Red Glove by Holly Black

Red Glove by Holly Black

Series: Curse Workers (#2)
Pages: 320
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry
Published: April 5th, 2011
IBSN: 9781442403390

Source: Galley Grab

After rescuing his brothers from Zacharov's retribution and finding out that Lila, the girl he has loved his whole life, will never, ever be his now that his mother has worked her, Cassel is trying to reestablish some kind of normalcy in his life. That was never going to be easy for someone from a worker family tied to one of the big crime families and a mother whose cons get more reckless by the day. But Cassel is also coming to terms with what it means to be a transformation worker and figuring out how to have friends.

But normal doesn't last very long--soon Cassel is being courted by both sides of the law and is forced to confront his past. A past he remembers only in scattered fragments and one that could destroy his family and his future. Cassel will have to decide whose side he wants to be on because neutrality is not an option. And then he will have to pull off his biggest con ever to survive.

[Synopsis by Goodreads]

Red Glove is, like White Cat, set in a world where curse magic is illegal, and curse workers either become con artists or mobsters or hide their abilities from everyone. Cassel Sharpe comes from a family of criminals: his grandfather's a Death Worker, his mother's an Emotion Working con artist, and his brothers Work for a crime family. Cassel spent his whole life thinking he couldn't Work at all, and recently learnt that his brother was Working his memory so he had no idea he was the most rare kind of Worker of all, and no idea that they used him as an assassin.

After reading White Cat, I was expecting even twistier plots and higher stakes from Red Glove, and I wasn't disappointed at all. Red Glove's plot is clever, complicated and entirely compelling. There's a twist or new revelation around every corner, and I couldn't put it down.

Cassel was a dynamic character, with flaws interwoven into his personality that made him realistic. He was clever, brave, and I felt genuine compassion for him.

Cassel and Lila's relationship was complicated and difficult, yet I found myself looking forward to every scene they had together, hoping for the best.

The ending satisfied the major complications and opened new trials to be faced in Black Heart, the next book, coming out next year.

Holly Black's writing style is simple and dark and captivating. I give Red Glove a 5 out of 5 and recommend it to anyone who likes a paranormal mystery. Look out for it on the 5th of April.