Thursday, October 17, 2013

Out of My Comfort Zone: White Cat by Holly Black

Here's a book that was out of my comfort zone but turned out to be exactly a book that I could fall in love with. 

White Cat by Holly Black

This is a book that I was assigned to read in preparation for a conference. Become a YA librarian and you too can have English homework long after you are in school!

But, I'm so happy I was assigned this book- it's in one of my YA blind-spots, science fiction/fantasy. I'm normally a team-contemporary kind of girl, but man was I missing out when it came to this book.

Cassel Sharpe lives in a world where everyone wears gloves to make sure that they are protected from the curseworkers among them. People who look just the same as everyone else but might twist your memories or emotions just by touching you with their bare hands.

Curse working is illegal in the U.S., but that doesn't stop the already illegal crime families from using curse workers as their enforcers. Cassel's family has worked for one such family for years- his grandfather, mother and all of his brothers are all the type of dangerous individuals that the government is so worried about.

But Cassel doesn't have powers, instead he just has a really messed up memory of hurting his former best friend, the daughter of the very powerful crime boss that his family works for. No one will talk about it with him and he's never been punished for it-- but he can't run from the memory. To try and start over, he's headed to a prep school where no one knows him.

That's all fine and good until one night he wakes up suddenly and he's staring down at the student quad, from the roof of his dorm.

This was my first Holly Black book and it grabbed me and did not let me go.   The pacing keeps you hurtling through page after page. Also the world she has built is ours but with a sinister almost x-men-like vibe that is so creepy that you can't help but want to know all about it.Cassel is the perfect tour guide for this world, an outsider who's on the inside. I love the idea that you can't tell who is a curse worker just by looking at them and anyone who you meet might have a serious weapon hidden under their gloves. White Cat is gritty and cinematic, you can imagine each scene Ms. Black writes unfolding on a big screen.

And once you finish, you can grab Red Glove and keep on rolling through the series. It is just as fast moving and heart-pounding as the first one.

More to read:

Red Glove by Holly Black

Black Heart by Holly Black

The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black

Middle School Monday: Doll Bones by Holly Black


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