Thursday, June 9, 2011

Review: Heist Society by Ally Carter

Book: Heist Society by Ally Carter
Series: Heist Society #1
Pages: 287
Genre: Young Adult / Adventure
Buy A Copy: Amazon | Book Depository
Available Formats: Hardcover / Paperback / Ebook / Audio 
Publication Date: February 9th, 2010
How Did I Get This Book: Purchased
First Sentence: "No one knew for certain when the trouble started at the Colgan School."
Preview Book: Preview at Amazon
When Katarina Bishop was three, her parents took her to the case it. For her seventh birthday, Katarina and her Uncle Eddie traveled 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.

Heist Society by Ally Carter had some elements that I completely adored and some that could have done without. I am sucker for Heist movies, so admittedly, I was instantly drawn to the storyline. The book centers around Katarina (Kat) and her unlikely teenage "heist society".

Kat is an intriguing character, but I felt like something was missing from her narrative. While Carter constantly reminds us that Kat is a reluctant thief with a heart (reminiscent of Robin Hood), I had a difficult time connecting with her. I liked Kat as a character, but I did not really get into her character. The same goes for the rest of the cast of high class teenage miscreants. I found them all fascinating, but I did not feel anything in regards to them. Out of them all, I had the most stock in Hale - Kat's gorgeous best friend and right hand man. Hale was a charming addition to the group and he always was there for Kat. I just wish that Carter would have rounded out the characters a bit more. We are given the opportunity to view the story from most of the teens perspectives, but we don't ever really glimpse what they are feeling, or what there motivations are.

The storyline and tone of Heist Society are both, in a word - polished. Everything has a sort of shine to it, the characters are all smooth talking and beautiful; their actions and plans are always elaborate and elegant. I know these comparisons have been made over and over, but I cannot help myself. Heist Society was very much a teenage version of Oceans Eleven, The Italian Job, Mission Impossible or even,  Sneakers. If you enjoy these sort of storylines - ones that involve elaborate, well planned heists pulled off by a likable, charismatic cast of characters, you will most likely enjoy Heist Society.

Heist Society by Ally Carter was certainly a great deal of fun and I look forward to reading about more of Kat's adventures. It was a lighthearted story, with lots of polish and glamor that is sure to dazzle. Carter created a good foundation for upcoming books and my only hope is that we are given more of a chance to connect with the characters. Like I said before, I enjoyed all of the characters, I just want to learn more about them. Heist Society was an exciting read that is sure to entertain readers.

Favorite Quotes
"As she watched her father sip hot coffee and sneak smiles at her over the top of the cup, she knew that, strictly speaking, no thief is ever supposed to love anything as much as she loved him."
"Excuse me, miss," Marcus said a  moment later. "The gentlemen would like to know if" - he cleared his throat - "that boom was as bloody brilliant as they thought it was."
"But Hale was still moving, shrinking the distance between them. He seemed impossibly close as he whispered, "And I didn't choose it, Kat. I chose you."
"As offices went, sadly, Simon had seen worse. The bathroom stall was larger thanthe closet he'd been locked inside in Istanbul. The toilet was far more comfortable than the tree stump he'd been forced to use as a desk in Buenos Aires. He sat perfectly still, waiting for his laptop to start up, and as he looked down at the video image of Gregory Wainwright asleep in his office, Simon had to smile and think that he had been in far worse situations indeed."
"Sir," one of the guards said softly, stepping closer. Kat savored the irony as he whispered, "They're just kids."

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