Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Uncommon Criminals

Katarina Bishop has worn a lot of labels in her short life. Friend. Niece. Daughter. Thief. But for the last two months she’s simply been known as the girl who ran the crew that robbed the greatest museum in the world. That’s why Kat isn’t surprised when she’s asked to steal the infamous Cleopatra Emerald so it can be returned to its rightful owners. 

There are only three problems. First, the gem hasn’t been seen in public in thirty years. Second, since the fall of the Egyptian empire and the suicide of Cleopatra, no one who holds the emerald keeps it for long, and in Kat’s world, history almost always repeats itself. But it’s the third problem that makes Kat’s crew the most nervous and that is simply… the emerald is cursed.

Kat might be in way over her head, but she’s not going down without a fight. After all she has her best friend—the gorgeous Hale—and the rest of her crew with her as they chase the Cleopatra around the globe, dodging curses, realizing that the same tricks and cons her family has used for centuries are useless this time.

Which means, this time, Katarina Bishop is making up her own rules.
from goodreads.com

Beth says 4.5 Stars...
I picked up the first book in this series last summer because it was on sale and sounded fun.  I consider that a very good decision, because thus far the books have been an absolute blast to read.  I like to think of the series as Ocean's Eleven with the pop culture sensibilities of shows like Gilmore Girls or Buffy the Vampire Slayer.  There's all of the heist action, but constantly peppered with witty banter and one-liners.  The process of planning and going through the mental lists of different cons and tricks took up most of the book, with the actual action limited to a few scenes.  Luckily, the planning is as delightful as the various robberies.  There were a couple of plot twists, one of which was a bit more obvious because of the action that had occurred and the length of the book.  The ending worked wonderfully and had me giving a little satisfied fist pump at the book.

Kat's dealing with rather a lot from all directions.  She starts out the book having decided to lone wolf things for various re-acquisitions.  I'm not saying thefts because she's only stealing already stolen items and returning them to their rightful owners.  Using her skills for good!  However, the crew that was assembled in Heist Society is concerned that she's taking too many risks.  We get Hale and Gabriella being their generally awesome selves starting from almost the beginning of the book.  It takes a bit for the rest to join in, but it's worth the wait.  I love the relationship between Kat and Hale.  Yes, there's the romantic tension, but their priority is making sure that they can still be friends and get the job done.  Granted, that does come with lots of wonderfully quick banter.  The characters do develop some, but the main draw here is the brilliant heist and the rest of the breakneck plot.  Don't look too deeply; let yourself enjoy the ride.

This is a delightful entry in a series I'm thoroughly enjoying.  I definitely want to get my hands on the next book, which I'm sure I'll devour as rapidly as this one.  If you're into globe-trotting adventures with wit and serious capers then go out and buy these books immediately.
ebook from library


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