September 19, 2013

Black Heart by Holly Black: Book Review

Black Heart (Curse Workers, #3)Genre: YA Fantasy
Publication Date: April 3rd 2012
Rating: 4/5 stars
Series: The Curse Workers Trilogy (Book 1 | Book 2)
*synopsis has spoilers for the other books in the series. You have been warned
In a world where Magic is illegal.
Cassel Sharpe has the most deadly ability of all. With one touch, he can transform any object - including a person - into something else entirely. And that makes him a wanted man. The Feds are willing to forgive all his past crimes if he'll only leave his con artist family behind and go straight. But why does going straight feel so crooked?

For one thing, it means being on the opposite side of the law from Lila, the girl he loves. She's the daughter of a mob boss and getting ready to join the family business herself. Though Cassel is pretty sure she can never love him back, he can't stop obsessing over her. Which would be bad enough, even if her father wasn't keeping Cassel's mother prisoner in a posh apartment and threatening not to let her leave until she returns the priceless diamond she scammed off him years ago. Too bad she can't remember where she put it.

The Feds say they need Cassel to get rid of a powerful man who is spinning dangerously out of control. But if they want Cassel to use his unique talent to hurt people, what separates the good guys from the bad ones? Or is everyone just out to con him?

Time is running out, and all Cassel's magic and cleverness might not be enough to save him. With no easy answers and no one he can trust, love might be the most dangerous gamble of all.
My Thoughts: Once again, my reviews are becoming less organized. I forgot to write my thoughts on this one after I read it so I’ll write based on my faulty memory.

Red Glove (the 2nd book in the series) was also well written but the character development was seriously lacking. I felt that in this book, the characters did grow a little but not enough to suggest that there was any actual character development. Cassel (the main character) goes through little change but he is still mysterious and clever as ever. In this book, we see even less of the side characters. Don’t get me wrong, I love Cassel, he’s my favourite character but because the side characters were so involved in the first book, they should be more prominent in this one. One thing stays consistent in this book and that’s Cassel’s family:
“That’s family for you. Can’t live with them, can’t murder them.”
As usual, Cassel’s family is quite strange but still conning as ever. In this book, Cassel has to help out his mother with some of her problems (not going to say what) and I don’t understand it. Cassel’s mother was not the best mother figure but every time something bad happens to her he says stuff like “I have to help her, she’s my mother!” and this would be the part of the book where the eye-rolling commences. Another eye-rolling occurrence is the romance. I did not like the love interest and I think they are sort of wrong for each other so none of the romance was swoon-worthy to me.

Despite all the lack of character development and an unswoon worthy romance, this book was still interesting. As usual, I was fascinated by Cassel’s cleverness and his ability to get out of anything. The world-building and plot is fascinating as ever (more politics!) so I really enjoyed this book. The ending irked me a little (I need more!) but it was still a great end to a great series.

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