Tuesday, April 27, 2010

White Cat (Curse Workers, Book 1): By Holly Black

White Cat (Curse Workers, Book 1)


“Marks forget that whenever something’s to good to be true, that’s because it’s a con.” Cassel comes from a family of “workers” and con men. Workers, are people who have the ability work magic through touch. These “curses” can be anything from making someone forget something, to changing someone’s luck, to killing a person. But Cassel is different from the rest of his family, he doesn’t have a “curse” to work with. So he learns from all of them and uses his wit and cunning to develop a plan that will fool even the best con artists in the world. And his plan will work, at least it best, because Cassel’s life depends on it.


I’ve been a fan of Holly Black’s work since she first cam out with Tithe years ago. But I have to say The Curse Worker’s White Cat is different than anything else I’ve ever read by her.

This is not so say I didn’t like it, in fact I couldn’t put the book down. But fans of Black’s previous books should be warned it is a different experience than both her other series. That said, I liked The Curse Worker’s White Cat best out of all her books. It was engaging, fast paced, and had likable characters.

But what I liked most about the book was that right when you thought you were smarter than the book and had figured out all the twists and turns, something new is thrown your way, changing everything you thought.

These surprises are the best part of the book, and as the book is about con men and magic, it shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone that Black fashioned these twists to carry the emphasis they did.

That said, this book had other rewarding features to it. Up front and foremost is of course Black’s sensational writing style. She has the ability (and as such uses it) to weave a tale so intricate and engaging you forget you’re not part of the story but instead feel as if you’re right there along for the adventure. The Curse Worker’s White Cat has includes a handful of interesting supporting characters that help build the story.

Yet, while these supporting characters are interesting they are also the only piece of the book I wish Black had flushed out more. Each of the family members had such an interesting story that I wish Black had enough time to describe them in full. Including the ever mentioned, yet vaguely described father. I felt Cassel’s father was mentioned much to often and was unnecessary to the development of either characters or plot lines. All that said, I understand that there wasn’t enough room to include all these details and as such something had to get cut.

I liked The Curse Worker’s White Cat a lot and I would recommend it to anyone who reads either mystery books or young adult.


9 out of 10


PUBLISHER: Margaret K. McElderry (S&S)

PUBLISHED: May 4, 2010

PRICE: $17.99

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