Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Page Count: 291 pages, Paperback
Date Published: February 9th 2010 (Hardback)
Find it on Goodreads: Heist SocietySource: Purchased
When Katarina Bishop was three, her parents took her on a trip to the Louvre…to case it. For her seventh birthday, Katarina and her Uncle Eddie traveled to Austria…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 Kat back into the world she tried so hard to escape. But he has a good reason: a powerful mobster has been robbed of his priceless art collection and wants to retrieve it. 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 history--and, with any luck, steal her life back along the way
Honestly, I don't even know how it happened, but I was looking at my shelf the other day, trying to figure out what to read next and all of a sudden, Heist Society was in my hands. I had bought it a while ago, thinking it would be a good summer read, but then it went on my shelf and I kind of forgot about it. But I'm so glad I picked it up! Heist Society was a great, light and funny read that I couldn't put down. I'm a sucker for books like this... Anything to do with spies or thieves, I'm there.They're so much fun and I felt pretty cool in Home Depot reading/hiding behind the foliage in my mom's shopping cart, pretending to spy on her while she picked out drywall stuff. Ok, ONTO THE STORY:
I always have a bit of trouble getting into books that use third person narration, but after I read Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi, I developed more of a liking towards it. Thank goodness, because this book's narration was a bit different from what I am usually used to. There were times where we'd get a random background look into the minor characters, but they made sense. They were inserted nicely into the story and it gave the reader a better understanding of what the thieves were doing and why. The author at times would start off a chapter by using Kat's full name, Katarina Bishop, and then going off into a sentence formally written about what Kat's history was or experience was, if that makes any sense. It took me a bit to get used to that kind of thing, but eventually I grew fond of it, as it kind of gave off a cool vibe. I don't really know how to describe it, but I liked it.
This book was filled with twists and turns. I predicted some and others came as a surprise to me, which I really liked. I feel like I'm always able to know what's going to happen, or at least have an idea that is close to the truth, so when a book actually has a plot twist that I didn't see coming, I'm thrilled. There was a lot going on in this story, but at the same time, I felt it was too short. There could have been more and I wish there had been! I found this story to have some pacing issues as well, but nothing too drastic. There are lots of holes in the stories and loose ends, so I'm very excited for the sequel, Uncommon Criminals.
Then the characters. I really liked Kat. She was snarky and sarcastic, but cared deeply for her family and wanted nothing bad to happen to the people she cared for. I just wish we had gotten to know her better. I think this book would have been amazing had it been written in first person narrative, so that the reader was in Kat's head at all times. But with this third person omniscient that jumped back and forth from knowing Kat's thoughts and not, there were times when I was confused as to who the author was describing or what a character was doing. The team of teen thieves had a great dynamic and what we learned about each of them was great, I just wish we had learned a bit more. I wanted to know more about the two brothers, Angus and Hamish, and the team's techie, Simon! I liked Gabrielle, but didn't get much from her other than the fact that she was a girly girl. I'd love to know if there's more depth to her character.
Then we have Nick and Hale. While Heist Society has very little romance in it, there is some. There's quite a bit of romantic tension between Kat and her best friend, Hale, who was the one responsible for her expulsion from boarding school. I loved Hale. He was funny and protective and cared deeply for Kat. There were many times where there was a lot of tension between them and it was funny seeing how Kat reacted to it. Then there was Nick. There were hints to a love triangle between Nick, Hale and Kat all throughout the book, but it's obvious who Kat belongs with, in my opinion. I didn't get much from Nick and don't really know who he is, but I did like the twist at the end involving him.
All in all, this was a fun read that was perfect for a rainy day. I liked the action and twists and the characters were endearing. I can't wait to read the next book in Carter's series, Uncommon Criminals!