Readers: February 27th: Apologies for the scattered posting that's about to come during the next week or so. University has just started and I have a lot of work to do to get on top of things (and ahead!). Thanks for your patience, as always.

Publishers: I promise I'm not abandoning the lovely review copies you've sent!
I'm getting through them and the reviews will come eventually!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Review: Red Glove

Title: Red Glove
Author: Holly Black
Series: Curse Workers #2
Publisher: Hachette Australia
Published: April 5th 2011
Source: Hachette Australia for review

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.

After the shocking ending of White Cat, the novel begins with Cassel and his mother on the road, running a variety of scams on the innocent commoners of Atlantic City. Although Cassel's heart isn't in it, avoiding Lila is the only way he can think of to make the love curse fade away. Too bad he can't run forever. Cassel is shaken when he returns to school to find that Lila has enrolled there, claiming that she couldn't stay away. But just when you think things couldn't get any worse, the Feds blackmail him, threatening to out him unless he helps them catch his brother's murderer. If word gets out that he's on their side, his life could be at serious risk.

I felt that the characters were much more developed than they were in the previous book, mainly because the introductions were over and we could really focus on the relationships. In turn, we also know where to stand with certain characters and are constantly on the edges of our seat, trying to figure out their ulterior motives! I greatly enjoyed watching Cassel explore his abilities and family history. Coming to grips to who he really is, gone is the lost boy who's searching for his identity! He's quite a sweetheart when you take away his moping ;)

Utterly heartbreaking is how I'd describe Lila and Cassel's dilemma. Cassel's feelings are genuine but are Lila's? Of course we want to think that she loved him even before his mother decided to meddle…but who knows? Assume nothing when Holly Black's in the picture! These two have their fair share of romantic moments in Red Glove, so we can only hope for the curse to lift. Little do we expect the twist at the end.

There is no way you won't want to know what happens next. Once again, we're stranded with an epic cliffhanger and Black Heart is sure to be a stunning finale.

Did you enjoy the second book more than the first, like I did? Are you excited for Black Heart? :)

Find Holly on Twitter, Goodreads, Facebook, her website and blog.

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