Wednesday 25 June 2014

Book Review - Red Glove

Red Glove
Author: Holly Black
Series: Curse Workers #2
Genres: Paranormal, Urban Fantasy | Young Adult
Release Date: 14th June 2011
Publishers: Gollancz
No. Pages: 272
Source: Borrowed
Buy From: Amazon | Book Depository | Barnes and Noble | Waterstones
After rescuing his brothers from Zacharov's retribution and finding out that Lila, the girl he has loved his whole life, will never, ever be his, Cassel is trying to re-establish some kind of normalcy in his life. That was never going to be easy for someone from a worker family that's tied to one of the big crime families, and whose mother's cons get more reckless by the day. But Cassel is coming to terms with what it means to be a transformation worker, and he's figuring out how to have friends.

Except normal doesn't last very long. Soon Cassel is being courted by both sides of the law and is forced to confront his past- a past he remembers only in scattered fragments, and one that could destroy his family and his future. Cassel will have to decide whose side he wants to be on, because neutrality is not an option. And then he will have to pull off his biggest con ever to survive..

The following review may contain spoilers concerning earlier books in the series.
If you have not read the previous installments, please proceed with caution.

After finishing White Cat, I knew that upholding my commitment to series wouldn't be a problem with the Curse Workers; I love the mixture of both hustling and cons, but also the touch of paranormal and magic involved and how Black manages to weave these two features seamlessly together, so the fact that I enjoyed Red Glove just as much as it's previous installment was no real surprise, however, the reasons I enjoyed Red Glove were much different than that of White Cat, and it left me even more excited to finish this trilogy.

Red Glove takes place maybe a few weeks after the events of White Cat with reveal at the end of that book still rife and playing a huge part in Cassel's life; he can't bare to have himself in the same company as Lila anymore because of his real and honest romantic attachment to her and her worked, addicted feelings for him and this is possibly the biggest of reason why people wouldn't like this installment as much as White Cat. Where White Cat took the world Black created and delved deep into the minds of these characters, Red Glove served more on character development, romance and reveals rather than huge plot points and I actually didn't mind this change. I don't personally think it made this installment weaker, I think it just helped me as a reader connect and form a closer attachment to the characters involved with is always a good thing. Forming a better attachment to Cassel wasn't needed though; I already love his narration, his humour and blunt nature and how Black isn't afraid to use curse words to get across Cassel's feelings and thoughts on a situation, and the things Cassel goes through, his relationship with Barron changing dramatically and the death of Phillip, his Mother pushing her luck and Lila's father trying to recruit him all alongside the stress of college is enough to have me relating and being connected to him, not to mention he now has to solve a murder. Red Glove was definitely a much easier book to fall into in comparison to White Cat.

The plot and pace of Red Glove was also well thought out and executed well, and for the second time in a short while, I've wrongly guessed who the culprit behind the murder was and the shake up of a murder in this installment really allowed for the other minor characters to grow too and for more secrets to come to light. I enjoyed how I questioned a few of the characters myself as a reader and how some of the reveals were learnt alongside Cassel rather than having a pre-notion of them which was also executed well. The other minor plot details of Cassel piecing his memory back together, searching for the person he was and finding the person he wants to be was also wonderful to read about and there wasn't a single moment when the plot dried up. Yes, the romance and tension stood out more in this novel, Cassel and Lila finding it difficult to resist one another and the college drama that comes with that, as well as Sam and Daneca's relationship becoming a much more important feature too, but it didn't overshadow the plot itself too much at all. I found myself close to and invested in each of these characters and the story-lines each of them had and the bigger plot point carried throughout these installments of workers being given the same equality as others is a very important feature that can get lost in the series and I think if Black takes this feature and develops it more in Black Heart, then there's a good chance I'll enjoy the finale even more.

It's difficult to describe how Red Glove made me feel without giving away White Cats entire plot, but I once again loved the touches of family and friendship and how Cassel developed in that sense throughout and I also enjoyed seeing the different cons they pulled off happen, it once again reminded me of Hustle and it's possibly one of my favourite features in this series. Black kept her gruesome and slightly thriller themed scenes involved which only helped create the darker and more final atmosphere to this trilogy and she's left me excited to see where she's going to take and end this series. I want some happiness for Cassel and Lila although that seems so unrealistic and I really want to see somebody kick Barron in the balls, that would be one heck of a scene. If you haven't tried this series yet, get yourself a copy of White Cat and push through the first third, this trilogy is too good to miss and this installment is such a fantastic edition.


  1. Oh man you've reminded me how much I enjoyed White Cat and the fact that I have yet to read the sequel >.< I really have to get to that. I'm glad the sequel is solid and seems to have a great plot with unpredictability which is rare nowadays I find. I also love any book that has themes of friendship and family which I find much more compelling than romance a lot of the time. Great review, Amanda!

    1. So glad hunny! It's a good series to see through until then end, it's worth it I think. I really hope you continue you them Giselle! :D

  2. I really needed to get started with this series asap Amanda! Its quite rare to find a second book in a series, just as exciting as the first book. So I'm glad to see that you thoroughly enjoyed this. Fab review!

    1. You do need to start this series, it's such a good one. Ignore that never ending list you made the other day and do it anyway, so worth it and you'll love it! :)

  3. I really need to hurry up and read this series! I am adding far too many series to my TBR but I can't help myself. You always make them sound amazing and then I feel like I HAVE TO READ THEM!!!! Haha. It does sound good and I love the sound of Cassel, he seems like a character I could come to really love.

    1. Yes you do ;) I'm glad I can make books sound just as good as they are, he's a wonderful character that I think you would like, think you'd like Lila too! Get onto that ;)

  4. I need to read this one! I read The first years ago and thought I'd finish it last year when the last came out and then just didn't.

    I think I'd have to re-read maybe. I'm excited to hear this is a more character driven story than the first. You've gotten me excited again, I love Holly Black!


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