Title: Heist Society
Author: Ally Carter
Series: Heist Society #1
Genre: Mystery (YA)
When Katarina Bishop was three, her parents took her to the Louvre...to case it. For her seventh birthday, Katarina and her Uncle Eddie traveled to Austria...to steal the crown jewels. When Kat turned fifteen, she planned a con of her own--scamming her way into the best boarding school in the country, determined to leave the family business behind. Unfortunately, leaving "the life" for a normal life proves harder than she'd expected. Soon, Kat's friend and former co-conspirator, Hale, appears out of nowhere to bring her back into the world she tried so hard to escape. But he has good reason: a powerful mobster's art collection has been stolen, and he wants it returned. Only a master thief could have pulled this job, and Kat’s father isn’t just on the suspect list, he is the list. Caught between Interpol and a far more deadly enemy, Kat’s dad needs her help. For Kat there is only one solution: track down the paintings and steal them back. So what if it’s a spectacularly impossible job? She’s got two weeks, a teenage crew, and hopefully just enough talent to pull off the biggest heist in her family’s (very crooked) history--and, with any luck, steal her life back along the way.
My Review: I am kind of cringing away from posting this review. I have heard so many wonderful things about Heist Society from almost everyone, but it was really disappointing to me! W.W. Hale is popping up everywhere as a Book Boyfriend, rave reviews are up on almost every site, and I gotta say...I just don't get it. Maybe I've just been reading so many fantastic books that when I got one that was just...good...I couldn't enjoy it as much as if I had read it during a dry spell. Or maybe there is something in Uncommon Criminals that has turned everyone into a fan...all I know is that I did enjoy the concept, and the story line, and even the imagery was good...but then there were the characters... No, they weren't bad...but they definitely weren't good. The description of anyone other than Hale and Gabrielle leaves much to be desired. I love descriptions. Whether it is about how a particular character's hair reflects the moonlight in a given scene, or if it is some deep revealing flaw that indicates some conflict going on beneath the surface of a character, description is key. If the movie in my head has blank spots and grey areas when it comes to the people I'm "watching", then we have a problem. I loved the plot concept though. Teenagers pulling off daring heists, dangerous botch-jobs, and risky scams is always going to get me to bite. I especially liked the mystery that they were trying to solve. I could have used a little more of it actually. It is weird...why is it that despite knowing things like stealing, biting people, and murder are horrible and wrong, it is so fun to read about the people committing the crimes? Lol I mean I LOVE Dexter. Here is this serial killer, that I am actually cheering for as he kills other people! Am I sick? Am I twisted? Well, yes to both, but whatever...so is the rest of the world ahah. Characters: Hale was cute. He made for funny, witty banter that I really liked. He also was a devious snake and was responsible for Kat being kicked out of her school, but he is cheerfully devious...if that makes sense. I felt like Carter was trying to create an attachment for him out of thin air though. The insights about his parents were forced, and he seems weaker because of his faults and not stronger.I like the fact that they weren't automatically dating. They are obviously friends, and there is history between them, and of course the flirty witty banter that hints at more in the future, but overall there was just a good friendship and trust between the two. Gabrielle was portrayed like a villain in the beginning, then she is supposed to be Kat's confidant.This really confused me because the way that Kat describes her cousin in the beginning makes you want to hate her. Then all of the sudden they are working together and she just isn't that bad? I would have liked some further explanation or development of character before we just accept that she is okay now...
Cover: I really like the cover! It has an air of sophistication, and you know it isn't paranormal, and it isn't another gossipy clique book. The model does a good job looking smirky and suspicious but cute. I love those glasses! I want a pair! Lol The whole book was a light, quick, funny read that was pretty clever in places. I certainly wouldn't have thought of the different ways there are to rob a museum, but then again the biggest heist I have to worry about is how to steal the girl scout cookies from my man without him knowing they are gone...So I guess that it wasn't so bad overall...it was just average as opposed to the great books I've been reading lately...I'll have to give it a 7.5/10 for a good plot. And who knows, maybe Uncommon Criminals will bring me the character depth that I crave?
Now off to wait in the god-awful Secretary of State lines...oh well, at least I'll have my nook Dobby to keep me company...