Red Glove by Holly Black

Last year I picked up White Cat and was fairly stunned at the creative genius involved in Holly Black's latest dark noir fantasy. A few weeks ago I finally read the second book, Red Glove, in her Curse Workers series and have not stopped thinking about it since. Red Glove was absolutely out-of-this-world, I'm-hooked-for-good, I-want-the-sequel-NOW Perfection. I'm not even kidding folks.

**Please, please!! If you haven't read White Cat yet - know that mild SPOILERS follow. Much of the appeal of this series is all the crafty cons and double-and-triple-crossing that occurs, so just trust me when I say, ignorance is bliss here. Honestly though. Why haven't you read these books yet?? I'm waiting over here...
Everyone has their claws in me. Everyone.
Once upon a time, Cassel Sharpe thought he was a powerless nobody in a world dominated by dangerous 'curse workers,' people who have to ability to kill, maim, even change your dreams with just a touch of bare skin. At least until Cassel discovered that his brothers had been altering his memory in order to keep secret his extremely rare and dangerous skill: the ability to transform anything. But Cassel isn't the only one who has been damaged by his family's duplicity: his childhood friend and longtime crush, Lila Zacharov was emotionally worked by his mother to fall in love with Cassel. Now Cassel has no way of knowing if any of what Lila says or does is real. And it's killing him to keep his distance from the one girl he's always loved.

Just when Cassel figures his life couldn't become any more complicated, a pair of Federal Agents pop up, demanding Cassel's help in solving a murder (...or else) that hits a little too close to home. Knowing he's walking a fine line between his con artist family and his own personal safety, Cassel begins to pick apart the mystery that leaves even our hero, the cool and ever unflappable con man that Cassel is, out of sorts and rattled to the core.

Let me tell you Holly Black wasn't experiencing any sort of mid-series slump when she penned Red Glove. If anything, her second Curse Workers novel is better than the first: the cons are twistier and the characters prove they have much, much more at stake. Every single one of Ms. Black's characters are dang good: Sam, Danica, Barron, and goodness LILA - each one is a pitch-perfect. And then there's Cassel. Boy howdy. I could read stories about that guy all the live long day.

Cassel has got to be my favorite male POV narrator (with Split running a close second that is). Full of candor and wit, at first glance Cassel seems easy going and full of life, yet scratch the surface and you discover this freaky-scary intelligent dude who is forever scrambling to keep up with all the various Bad Guys who have him in their sights. To be honest, Red Glove is probably one of the top books I've read all year - in any genre.

*And after you've gone and devoured Red Glove, I highly recommend you check out this short story, "Lila Zacharov in 13 Pieces," written from Lila's perspective on Holly Black's website. It's one freaking amazing collection of insights into Lila's character.

series reading order:
~ White Cat - my review
~ Red Glove
~ Black Heart (??)

Because Everyone Likes a Second Opinion:
Bookshelves of Doom Review
Dear Author review
Girls in the Stacks review
Icey Books review
Novel Thoughts review

book source: my local library

1 comment:

Sunhi said...

Oh, I want this so badly. I stupidly didn't buy it when I saw it at my local B&N and now they aren't carrying that OR White Cat. Maybe it is time for a big Amazon haul.