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Book Review: Heist Society by Ally Carter

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No matter what age you are, Ally Carter’s new YA book Heist Society is going to be one of the best novels out this year. The book is a caper novel, but it’s chockfull of action, witty characters, and dangerous bad guys. No wonder the book has already been optioned for a movie.

Katarina Bishop is the progeny of two amazing thieves. Her mother and father both belonged to a family of art thieves with exceptional skill levels. I would have liked to know more about why she made the split from her family at the beginning of this book, but may that’s coming.

The heart of this novel revolves around family, the family that Kat was born into as well as the one she forges as she works to save her father and herself from an enterprising gangster. When Kat’s father gets accused of stealing five priceless paintings from Arturo Taccone, she knows she has to do something to get her father out of the man’s cross hairs.

I love Kat’s friends. They are the perfect ensemble for a caper novel. Hale, handsome and a billionaire in his own right. Gabrielle, beautiful and vivacious, and much smarter than anyone that blonde should be. The Bagwell brothers were an absolute riot, and Simon shows a lot of promise as computer nerd and techgeek. Hoping for more gadgets in the next outing.

I really liked the twists and turns Carter puts into the book. Every time I thought I’d figured out where she was heading, she performed a 180 and left me scrambling for mental turf again. And the beautiful thing is that all the plot convolutions made perfect sense. I mean, the hiding place for the five missing paintings was absolutely brilliant.

The author is whizbang at all the con architecture as well. The history of art thievery and the World War II connections were fantastic. I loved how casually Kat tossed off wealth, and the fact that wealth wasn’t what she was after.

Her family is amazing. I’d love to sit and talk with Uncle Eddie and hang out in the kitchen for the family gatherings. There must be at least a million stories that Ally Carter can wring out of what she’s set up in this initial book.

The reading is awesome. I read the entire 300 page book in two sittings, would have read it in one, but the body gave out just as everyone was sliding into the final robbery. I’m a big fan of Ocean’s Eleven and the television show Leverage, and can hardly wait to read more books about Kat Bishop.

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