Review of Red Glove (Curse Workers, book 2), by Holly Black.
Warning: Contains spoilers from White Cat. Please read White Cat before reading this review!! For my review of White Cat, please go here.
Quickie: This series is in my top 5 YA series, no question. A must read.
From the cover flap: 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, the 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.
Okay seriously. Does that not sound awesome?? I loved every bit of Red Glove. It was exciting and tense and thoughtful.
I love Cassel and I love reading a male POV that's convincing! He's not the normal female-written-male. He actually thinks like a guy, in a good way. Faults and flaws and normal guy-ish things aren't left out or changed, he feels real. Miz Black, I adore you and I thank you so very, very much for really and honestly being true to Cassel's voice.
(More on Cassel) In most books we read, the tortured boy is the love interest that gets away, or the interesting side character, or the love interest that our female protag has for a while, but things don't work out. Sometimes, the tortured boy is the enemy. He's done bad things. Therefore, he must be inherently bad. We can't like him, no matter what he does to try to redeem himself. Not so in Red Glove. Cassel is tortured and broken and a mess, no doubt about it. He's done terrible things. More than a few times. He's by no means perfect. But despite all that, we are rooting for him the whole time. We love him and adore him and sympathize with him. He's done bad things, but he's good. That is quite possibly my favorite thing about this series.
Another thing that I just loved was reading about a world that is nearly identical to the one I live in, but with one major difference. The whole curse worker thing is fascinating and terrifying and it's interesting to see how this one difference impacts everything and everyone. Just one major change and it branches out and becomes important in some of the most unexpected ways.
Seriously guys, I can't pimp this book enough. I can't say enough wonderful things about it. It's just something you have to read and appreciate for yourself. Please, please, please do yourself a favor and read White Cat and Red Glove!! You'll be hooked.
5 out of 5 stars.
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