Uncommon Criminals by Ally Carter
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
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 . . . 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 and 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.
Sequels are often tricky. Often pale in comparison to their predecessor. Often try too hard to live up to the success from the first book. And often fail.
But that wasn't the case with UNCOMMON CRIMINALS. I loved this book just as much - if not more - than HEIST SOCIETY. Yet again, Ally Carter brings us solid entertainment, in what can easily be labeled as the Thomas Crown Affair for teens. Clever writing with great twists and suspense to the plot - and some of the most entertaining characters I've read in a long time.
As the story unfolds, Kat brings all the traits I loved about her from the first book. Incredibly stubborn (LOVE!), feisty and amazingly smart, but learns this time, no matter how strong she is, she can't do everything herself. Enter in the rest of her crew - which as I turned each page, couldn't wait for every single one of them to make their appearance. All of the characters from HEIST SOCIETY are back, and with them, they each bring their own unique reason for being a part of the story: from her beautiful cousin Gabrielle, to the quirky Bagshaw brothers who can blow things up like none other, and Simon - the Bill Gates of teenagers - to Nick, the handsome stranger who has his own twist up his sleeve. And then there's Hale. Enter in loud sigh here. Handsome? Check. Quick-witted? Check. Billionaire? Check. Would do anything for Kat, no matter the cost? Big check. Love me some Hale. Yum.
This book had all the right twists and turns, covering the globe from one amazing location (was it Paraguay or Uruguay?) to another. I've never been to Monaco myself, but after reading this tale, what I wouldn't love to be sitting on some fancy 250' yacht, floating on the crystal blue waters of the Mediterranean...with Hale.
I thoroughly enjoyed this story and sincerely hope Ms. Carter is working on a third heist - and if the ending of UNCOMMON CRIMINALS is any indication, I'm sure there's one in the works. Not like she doesn't have a lot on her plate right now, what with Gallagher Girls #5 (OUT OF SIGHT, OUT OF TIME) almost ready to hit bookshelves early next year. And oh, a little lady named Drew Barrymore who's signed on to produce and direct HEIST SOCIETY (read about the movie news, here and Ally's interview here), with screenwriter Shauna Cross (WHIP IT! and IF I STAY) set to adapt. So yeah, I'd say Ms. Carter is a tad bit busy. But you can bet I can't wait to see what she comes up with next, for Kat and her crew.
Thoroughly entertaining. Definite good read.
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Uncommon Criminals by Ally Carter