Curses and cons. Magic and the mob. In Cassel Sharpe’s world, they go together. Cassel always thought he was an ordinary guy, until he realized his memories were being manipulated by his brothers. Now he knows the truth—he’s the most powerful curse worker around. A touch of his hand can transform anything—or anyone—into something else.
That was how Lila, the girl he loved, became a white cat. Cassel was tricked into thinking he killed her, when actually he tried to save her. Now that she’s human again, he should be overjoyed. Trouble is, Lila’s been cursed to love him, a little gift from his emotion worker mom. And if Lila’s love is as phony as Cassel’s made-up memories, then he can’t believe anything she says or does.
When Cassel’s oldest brother is murdered, the Feds recruit Cassel to help make sense of the only clue—crime-scene images of a woman in red gloves. But the mob is after Cassel too—they know how valuable he could be to them. Cassel is going to have to stay one step ahead of both sides just to survive. But where can he turn when he can’t trust anyone—least of all, himself?
Love is a curse and the con is the only answer in a game too dangerous to lose.
Okay so if you thought that White Cat pulled some heavy punches, Holly Black manages to follow it up with a remarkable sequal to give her first book in the Curse workers trilogy a run for its money.
His mom’s back up to her old tricks. His oldest brother has been murdered. Zacharov still wants him and intends on using him. His other older brother thinks the journal entries are real, which leaves Cassel on edge because he knows the truth. The FBI have bullied Cassel into helping him solve his brother’s murder and another string of murders they believe related. And Lila is throwing herself at Cassel, while he tries to resist.
One of the things I loved about this book was the follow up between him and Lila. This isn’t an easy relationship of boy gets girl, happily ever after. In fact due to his own moral code and his mom’s meddling, Cassel is trying to resist Lila as she throws herself at him. I do freely admit that I fully wanted him to give into her, because Holly Black is the type of author who isn’t afraid to go there.
We also get to see Cassel let his friends into his life more. The scene where he reveals what kind of worker he is to Sam had me anxiously on the edge of my seat. I was however a little disappointed that he still played his friends, but sometimes it’s hard to let go of old habits. Also it makes Cassel who he is; he wouldn’t be the same character if he just gave all of that up.
But primarily this story is about family loyalty. How far will you go to protect those you love, and what will you do to save them? And is your version of saving them, the same for them as it is for you? It’s a question of morality and how far does it bend.