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Heist Society #1

Heist Society

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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.

287 pages, Hardcover

First published February 9, 2010

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About the author

Ally Carter

52 books15.2k followers
Ally Carter writes books about sneaky people and movies about Christmas. She is the New York Times Best-selling author of the Gallagher Girls, Heist Society, and Embassy Row series for teens as well as WINTERBORNE HOME FOR VENGEANCE AND VALOR for younger readers. Her books have been published all over the world, in over twenty languages.

She encourages you to visit her online at allycarter.com and embassyrowbooks.com.

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5 stars
32,786 (35%)
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3 stars
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Displaying 1 - 30 of 5,463 reviews
Profile Image for Kat Kennedy.
475 reviews16.1k followers
December 4, 2013
My husband once told me a story about a neighbour he had before his family moved to our city. His very friendly, community conscious neighbour had a mower stollen one night by a couple of drunken goons. His parents gave him their sympathy and inquired as to why he didn't call the police. He replied that he didn't need to.

Whoever this man really was and whatever he really did, I won't expound on. It's enough to say that two days later his mower was returned to his yard. Cleaned. With a free case of beer.

See, I only wish I was THAT kind of badass. The kind of badass where if someone steals from me - they quickly realize their mistakes, shit themselves and set about to rectifying the situation. Ah! Life would be sweet!

This is the kind of bad guy that Ally Carter TRIES to create in Heist Society and her failure to really do so is the only let down to what is otherwise a very fun, enjoyable novel to read.

So, Katarina Bishop is a fifteen year old who comes from a family of theives.

I suppose for about fifteen seconds I found the premise of this novel ridiculous before I recalled that The Fox sisters started when they were 10 and 12 and that Frank Abagnale had collected $40,000 from various New York banks around the same time my little brother learned he could tap his head AND rub his tummy in unison.

However, for the majority of the novel, I STILL felt that it really should have been people in their early tweenties as opposed to Teens. Hale just doesn't SEEM 16. Nobody is mysertious and sexy and intriguing at 16 - it's just impossible. I refuse!

People don't have suave and debonair one liners at sixteen, I don't care how fucking rich they are! Money doesn't buy you the ability to lean in and gaze intensely into a chic's eyes while letting loose some perfect, panty-dropping line and finishing it off with a wicked grin.

You know what people have at sixteen? Pimples. Pimples and body odour and dirty magazines. They do not have more class than all the Ivy League schools in America put together.

The writing is okay and I think you have to take this book for what it is - a short fun escape into fantasy. It's not brilliant. It's not going to blow your world. The whole con within the con was very sketchy and if this book were real then Kat would have ended it at the fishing docks with a knife in her gut. This is where I come back to the part where the villain just didn't cut it.

It's not really Carter's fault though. This is a young adult novel and whilst, in reality, the villain would have had Kat "roughed up a little" on several occasions, that's really not appropriate for teen lit. Okay, maybe paranoraml teen lit but this is different.

So he always just kind of came off as this idiot who was SUPPOSED to be intimidating - but I wasn't really feeling it. Maybe I don't intimidate easy. Maybe I found his logic, linking Kat's Dad to the crime to be so piss poor weak, that if I'd been Kat I would have given him a baleful glare, flipped him off and told him to find a new pacifier before letting him throw his itty tantrums over his lost art.

The moral to the story is that if you want an easy read, and you're at the "target audience" age (because nothing is more squicky than realizing you're a 24 year old wife and mother who just had innapropriate thoughts about a bloody 16 year old!) then give it a go!
Profile Image for Lyndsey.
126 reviews3,124 followers
November 25, 2011
Also posted on STRANGEMORE.COM.

Who is in the Heist Society?

* One of them is a mini Sydney-Bristow-in-training, whose family has been falsely accused, and she's armed with a big attitude and huge problems.

* Then there is the handsome and debonair millionaire thief who compares dancing to navigating through a laser grid.

* There is also the beauty who is literally electrifying in high heels and a skirt. At least, when she gets too close to priceless works of art.

* Two of them are the ones who've been blacklisted for stealing from a nun. Because whoever you are, that's just wrong.

* Another is a pickpocket and a newbie, with a British accent and mysterious eyes.

These are the people who make jokes about the time so-and-so ransomed The Queen's prized pooch. They are the teeny-bopper versions of Ocean's Eleven, but with less crew members and an even bigger job.

They are also the ones who take on the biggest heist job in the world. Their story isn't heart-wrenching or gut-churning, but it's fast, fun, and full of intrigue.

I feel like I should tell you more, but the first rule of Heist Society is that you don't... Well, if you don't already know, then I probably shouldn't tell you.
Profile Image for Heather.
234 reviews28 followers
July 16, 2011
I love it when you get excited when seeing a book you never heard of before, and then while reading, it turns out to be fantastic, instead of the opposite. I am now a huge fan of Ally Carter's. I have her other series (the Gallagher Girls), but I just haven't had the time to read them yet...what, with so many other books to read, but not now. I wont wait to read them.

I can see this series becoming my new YA favorite.

I loved the characters and the twist and turns in the plot-line. It wasn't predictable, which actually, the ending took me by surprise in a number of ways. I'm even beginning to be okay with partial third person narration, who would have thought. HA!

I really enjoyed the writing, because Carter used enough details to high-light certain things and relationships without losing the focus of the whole story, but giving enough to keep the reader intrigued and wondering. It wasn't bogged down with too much nonessential filling, which I appreciated. It was a fast read, because I just had to know how this was all going to turn out.

For me, I loved everything about this book. Maybe it was because of the other books I've been reading lately, what ever the case, this book was a refreshing change from my normal interest. I can't wait for what comes next...
Profile Image for Grace (Bookworm Supreme).
210 reviews108 followers
December 10, 2022
It was pretty good! 😊 Didn’t love it tho. Although it was a nice way to pass the time, it was also a little too… forgettable 🤷‍♀️

“It is an occupational hazard that anyone who has spent her life learning how to lie eventually becomes bad at telling the truth.”

Heist Society is basically about Katarina Bishop, who comes from a family of thieves, but she’s quit the family business and has resolved not to steal any more. However, when stealing becomes the only way to save her dad’s life, it looks like she’ll be forced to get back in business…

“And I didn't choose it, Kat. I chose you.”

This was a decent enough read! Very light and fluffy. There were definitely some things I liked more than others tho. Starting with what I did like:

✔️ The pace: The book was super fast-paced, which made it fly by! That made it super quick & nice to read 😀

✔️ The plot: The plot was pretty good! Even though there weren’t any, like, ‘twists’ or anything, it kept me interested and had enough action to satisfy me 😁

✔️ The writing: I quite liked the writing. It wasn’t incredible, but it was super easy to read and helped the book go by really quickly.

Now, onto what I didn’t like…

❌ The characters: eh, I didn’t hate the characters but they were all a little too flat for my liking. I never really connected to Kat and the only character that I really liked was Hale. And that’s probably bc he reminds me of a lot of other book boys I like 😏😏😂😂

❌ The ending: after the whole heist thing, the ending felt a little too… anticlimactic. It just kinda ended and that was it. I would’ve preferred something a bit more interesting or exciting to end the book off. There’s literally nothing that’s motivating me to pick up the next book now 😬

❌ The romance: oh gosh, the romance… don’t get me started… This is the kind of romance where it’s so OBVIOUS that they like each other, but they both keep ignoring each other and every opportunity to confess their feelings, they DON’T and it’s just SO FRUSTRATING *screams* I mean, they didn’t tell each other they liked each other in this book!!! Bc it’s a series!!! 😤😤🙈🙈
Enough said.

❌ How forgettable it is: yeah, I don’t all books to make me love them so much I think of them all the time, but, like…. this was just a little TOO forgettable. I mean, it’s been only a couple of days since I finished it and the details are already starting to blur a little. Imagine what it’ll be like in a couple months- I’ll probably have forgotten I ever read it!! So, I would’ve liked it to be a little more memorable.

“Dancing. Come on. You can do it. It's a lot like navigating through a laser grid. It requires rhythm.' He moved her hips to the beat of the distant music. 'And patience.' He spun her around slowly and back toward him. 'And it's only fun if you trust your partner.' The dip was so slow, so smooth that Kat didn't know it was happening until the world was already turned upside down and Hale's face was inches from her own.
Count me in, Kat.' He squeezed her tighter. 'You should always count me in.” ~ Did I not say it was obvious??? 🙈

Overall, it was a pretty fun read! Super fluffy, super short, super quick to read. I’d probably recommend it if you’re looking for a fun palate cleanser between other books. But otherwise? … meh, probably not. It was just okay 🤷‍♀️

~ 3 stars


A fun, quick read! I liked it 😊

Profile Image for Sue (Hollywood News Source).
781 reviews1,599 followers
April 15, 2015

Listen to my Heist Society fanmix in 8tracks and see the tracklist here.

Actual Rating: 4.5 stars

This book is everything I wanted and more.

Heist Society has the same international thrill as The Conspiracy of Us which is one of my favorite reads this year. And it went delightfully well. I might be crying tears of blood. Please give me twenty. Mini review to come. 
Profile Image for Krystle.
881 reviews337 followers
December 2, 2018
Okay, the only reason I wanted to read this book was because I took a course called “Art in Popular Literature” and it was an awesome class that really sparked my interest in art. Perhaps that wasn’t the right perspective to view this book from because the complete absence and respect paid to the true real works of art in this book left me absolutely pissed.

First of all, for the majority of the book I was so confused. All the amounts of names for characters we had to keep track of and backstory events that were dropped on me made my head bleed. Is this supposed to be part of a larger world or series because that’s the only reason I can offer for the clunky and forced method of bringing about information to the reader.

And then when actual mentions of the art came up, it was nothing more than vague offhand descriptions that brought nothing to the table as to explaining why these works were so important and why these bad guys wanted them so bad. There is a lot of economic, cultural, and societal issues that surround major pieces of art (painting, sculptures, or otherwise) and to not even have them briefly touched upon doesn’t develop a sense of understanding or connection with the reader.

I was very upset, but that was nothing until I found out that the artworks described were all fake and made up. Excuse me? Why were these "Grand Masters" made up? There are artists that are considered the Grand Masters of art and I'm sorry but Renoir and Impressionism is not part of that select group. It’s not like it's lacking for inspiration there. They have dozens of missing or stolen paintings worth millions of dollars that are without a clue as to where their current whereabouts are. This would have given this story a lot more credibility and brought a whole ‘nother layer to the book in general.

You know, when the character decided to diss some of the grandest museums dedicated to art in the world, I was really pissed. Your only reasoning is that it’s too hot, too pretentious, too crowded? What the fuck is wrong with you. It’s a museum! Therefore it’s meant as a place of enjoyment for everyone while attempting to educate the public about the significance of the pieces. Give me a break. And when they tried to make out how the museum that’s set up by one of the villain’s ancestor’s wife (or some convoluted crap like that) and how she wanted to buy the world’s best art work that money could buy so she could have the best museum in the world, I was about to scream. There was an attempt to make a parallel to Isabella Stewart Gardner but sorry, her persona was entirely failed to be captured.

Heist Society makes it out to seem that stealing paintings or artworks from museums is done all the time because of how lucrative it is. Yeah, it is a lucrative business because of how much money they are worth and could possibly make in the black market, but after the heist of the Isabella Stewart Gardner museum, security and precautions have been stepped way up so it’s not as easy as it was before.

The only real reason I did not cut up this book more because of the relationship between Kat and Hale. This was one of the big positives, because their romance is gradually built up from a friendship filled with banter to blossoming feelings and finally realization of both. It was sweet and Hale was a great friend. He never pushed her around, was very dependable, and would always be there for her when she needed him.

I’m sure the whole idea of a teenager working undercover as a spy and gallivanting off to glamorous countries, spending hecka amounts of money, and undergoing daring missions is a dream fantasy for many people. And I can see the attraction but I am unhappy about how horribly art was portrayed in this book. If there was disclaimer stating from the start that the artworks referenced were not real than I would not have had as much of a problem with this book than I did.

If this is how all popular ya books treat art, I should best stay away from them in the future.
Profile Image for Poonam.
605 reviews501 followers
April 19, 2017
"Never live anyplace you can't walk away from. Never own anything you can't leave behind. These were the laws of Kat's life- of Kat's world."

The book is about 15 yr old Katherine and her family business is Burglary. The book promises a fun read with a bit of action and a little bit of mystery. The book does deliver on it's promise.

I wanted to read something light after some of the intense reads and this book did refresh my mind.

Kat has 2 weeks to perform a job to get her dad out of trouble. In 2 weeks Kat needs to form a crew and come up with a foolproof plan.

All I can say is I really enjoyed reading about the plan and it's final execution. The book has a very Oceans 11 feel to it but with a teenage crew.

Recommended to all who want a light fun read with a little bit of mystery and action.
Profile Image for Muse-ic ♬.
381 reviews110 followers
January 21, 2016
This was a meh read. When it got to a certain point, I kept glancing at the percentage at the bottom of my kindle screen to see if I was almost done.
It's not a bad book and the idea was interesting, but I didn't really feel it.

First off, it was rather vague. I couldn't really connect to any of the characters because I hardly got to know them.
Also there were times where this book confusingly jumped between different POV's and lost me in the process. It was hardly a change of paragraph before we were in someone else's head. And then it took a few sentences to figure out who it was because I didn't feel a difference between the voices of the characters. I had to wait for names to be dropped!

I also don't understand how these people are jumping all over the world. One day they're in Vegas, the next in Paris, then England, then Italy...etc.
Literally! At the beginning of each chapter there would be the countdown to the number of days left to their deadline and the location the characters were at. This happened daily. So for the most part, each day they were in a different country.

And they end up at the next destination to continue their mission within the same day or the next day.

I hate to break the news, but it takes at least twelve hours to fly from Vegas to Paris and do you know how exhausting travel is, not to mention daily travel??
How are they still awake? It doesn't make any sense.

And I know I keep saying "they", but I'm not specifying because I only somewhat know the names of this group of maximum 16-year-olds. Katarina, Hale, Gabrielle, Simon, Nick, and a couple others.

The "villain" is Arturo Taccone. He had in his possession several incredibly expensive painting that were stolen by "Visily Romani". Visily Romani is a pseudonym for a dangerous thief. But it isn't one person. The title is...passed down, I guess you could say.

Anyway, this Romani stole the paintings from Arturo and brought them to the Henley Museum......

So lemme get this straight: a thief stole billions of dollars worth of paintings from a man to whom they never belonged in the first place and did the good deed of bringing them to an extremely reputable museum instead of keeping them for him/herself, and this museum never really wondered where these paintings came from?? Wut?
And Arturo is the bad guy because he thinks Katarina's dad is the one that stole them and gave her two weeks to return the paintings to him or bad things would happen to her father. He barely gave this 16-year-old and her friends time to steal more than two highly guarded paintings.
That's not all!
Despite Katarina explaining to Arturo how she absolutely couldn't succeed in such a short time period, She and her friends succeed. They succeed last minute! And I don't even know how! Deus ex machina much?

The romance was completely unnecessary and forced. Why does Hale like Katarina? He only starts to show any interest once Nick joins the gang and flirts with Katarina. I don't care for Hale as a love interest in any way. There was no chemistry either. It just started at one point when Katarina went into his garden by herself and he followed her to talk in the romantic moonlight. Please. The book would have been soooooo much better without it!

The only character I liked was Katarina's cousin Gabrielle because she was pretty awesome!

I know that a lot of people enjoyed this one, and I did as well to a certain extent. Give it a shot!
Profile Image for C.B. Cook.
Author 6 books196 followers
May 6, 2020
Third read review: I needed to read two more books for the read in challenge before the end of the year, and I immediately thought the Heist Society books. Still awesome! (Scroll down for full review)

Re-read review: Good gravy, Ally Carter is a magician!!! In spite of the fact that I already knew everything that happened, I still couldn't put this down. HOW??? XD Definitely just as good as the first time! (See below for some content problems.)

How do I start to describe this book? It was amazing, wonderful, epic... I'm already fairly certain that this will be one of my absolute favoritest books of all time. I have a thing for superheroes, and the next best thing to superheroes are spies and other epically awesome people.

Thieves, though?

Well, let me tell you - these thieves, yes.

See, these thieves are going all Mission: Impossible and stealing back things that have been stolen, to save Kat's father. Which, if you ask me, is a pretty noble cause, especially for thieves.

Holy cow, did this book surprise me! I thought I would enjoy it, but I didn't think I'd fall in love with it. W.W. Hale the Fifth... PLEASE. COME. TO. ME. I need more of this series, and also more of Ally Carter's other books. I'm hoping to get my hands on the Gallagher Girls series soon...

My only content notes would be that this is a secular book, so there are some comments made about females that are inappropriate. Gabrielle wears a lot of short skirts and tight/low-cut shirts. Other than that, it was a very great read, which I would highly recommend!
Profile Image for Norah Una Sumner.
848 reviews447 followers
February 7, 2017
3.5 stars

I seriously needed this in my life. This was so fun, cute and perfect to relax myself after a tough week of non - stopping exams. I love Ally's writing style and her characters, she makes a great atmosphere and makes you laugh so much. This reminded me a lot of Secret Society Girl series, which I love, but in a YA world. Also, hello there Hale. The characters are are extremely cute and interesting and it was so fun to go on this adventure with them!
Profile Image for Bry.
631 reviews93 followers
June 1, 2010
Definitely 5 stars! Put it this way, I got this on audiobook from the library, finished it today in the car on the way to work, and stopped at the book store on the way home from work to buy a copy to keep. What a great premise! A bunch of preteens pulling off an Ocean's 11 worthy heist all in the name of saving family.

Katerina Bishop (such a fantastic name) is the daughter of Bobby Bishop - one of the world's greatest thief's - and she is well on her way to being the same. She pulled her first job at the age of 5 - granted she only did it for the ice cream her father promised her if she would scream until the authorities came. Her father is accused of stealing 5 paintings from a very bad man who now wants his possessions back or her father will pay a very deadly price. The thing is he didn't do it, but no one knows who did. Her crew - a ragtag team of opposites from the the hot girl, to the billionaire boy, to the super geek - come together to help her pull off a heist to steal back the paintings from a place that is supposedly impossible to steal from.

The book is fast paced and travels the world hitting Las Vegas, Italy, England, and a few more. You are constantly wondering who the mystery thief is, their connection to Kat if their is one, and just how the hell they are pulling off their heists!

This is definitely going onto my re-readable shelf and I can only cross my fingers and hope that there will be a sequel as I still have some unanswered questions, and totally want to read more about Kat, Hale, and their adventures.


Wow, right after I finish reading this book 5 pieces of artwork are stolen from the Paris Museum of Modern Art. So sad!


It's been optioned as a movie! YAY!
Profile Image for Maja (The Nocturnal Library).
1,013 reviews1,881 followers
July 8, 2012
I love tales about thieves and con artists, book series like The Curse Workers and movies like Ocean’s Eleven. I love it when seemingly random events come together neatly and cleverly in the end. Therefore, I loved Heist Society. It is admittedly not as clever as White Cat, for example, but I had a hard time putting it down and that’s a big deal these days.

Fifteen-year-old Katarina Bishop is a very experienced con artist. She may be ridiculously young, but in her line of work, she’s one of the best. Descended from a long line of skilled con men and educated by her own father, Kat knows every trick in the book. But the kind of life she’s been leading for as long as she can remember can be very tiresome so she’s decided to try something different – get a proper education.
At the beginning of Heist Society, Kat is being expelled from a very prestigious boarding school she’d conned her way into. Her best friend and fellow con artist, W.W. Hale the Fifth, set her up and had her expelled, all because her father’s in trouble and needs help. Someone has stolen five absurdly expensive paintings from Arturo Taccone, a very rich and unscrupulous man who is convinced that Kat’s dad is responsible and is ready to do anything at all to get them back. He doesn’t care that her father has an alibi and that he’s being watched by the Interpol. He just wants his property back, and to give it back to him, Kat and her friends have to steal them from a place no one has ever broken into – the Henley museum in London.

I’m not sure why I waited so long to read Heist Society – it’s exactly the kind of book I usually can’t resist – light, fast and utterly unputdownable. Once I started thinking about flaws, I realized it is also a bit too short. There was room for a few more plot twists, and although I’m not normally a fan of watered down plots, I did feel that things were happening far too fast.

The characters were all interesting, colorful and full of quirks. I loved getting to know them and figuring them out, enjoyed trying to understand their motives and loyalties. Although Kat is the main character, I feel that I’ve learned more about the others than I did about her, but some things were made clearer towards the end and I can’t wait to discover more in Uncommon Criminals. Although there are two gorgeous boys in Kat’s world, Heist Society is really romance-free. There are hints of a relationship and some scenes did feel a bit love triangle-ish, but it is quite clear who Kat belongs with, and I’m pretty confident that’s who she’ll end up with.

To make the long story short (*gasp* Yes, I do that occasionally!), I highly recommend this book to anyone looking for a quick summer read.

Also posted at The Nocturnal Library
Profile Image for Chamonix.
31 reviews
March 23, 2011
WHY? I don't understand all these stellar reviews. It's mind boggling because truly this book was nothing spectacular. It was clever, sure. I like the idea of it more than I like the book per se.

The main character is a ninny. All she ever does is float around worrying, trying to reassure me that although she has/had amazing ninja stealing skills, she doesn't approve of them. GET OUT OF THE WAY PRISCILLA, I'LL TAKE YOUR PLACE. GUN-FRICKING-HO. Not to mention she was flat. Like, tasteless kind of wafer flat. All the other characters were the ice-cream and chocolate sauce to cover up her extreme flatness. She has no personality once you take away her endless worrying and that killed the story for me endlessly. Even the mysterious little slice about her leaving the family fails to add a bit of ambitious independence to her character because it was never really explained fully. THIS BOOK CONFUSES ME GREATLY. I had to pull out my 'lolkay I'll go with it, see if it makes more sense once they give me a few more clues'. I never got those clues and I valiantly finished this book out of loyalty for my liking of the other characters. Like not love. Even they could have used a bit of oomph.

The main villain turned out to be not scary at all. His presence was more of an annoying blot throughout the story. Give the timeline some purpose for it's pace. Seriously I met scarier monkeys then this bloke, I mean chimpanzees who rip peoples lips and eyelids off. This guys had some menace going but he was never actually scary.
Profile Image for Siiri (Little Pieces of Imagination).
533 reviews106 followers
July 26, 2016
I spent the better half of today tucked between the covers in my bed reading this gem. It was such a fun experience as always with Ally's books. I love this crew and the theme is A+, of course! Kat just took a spot among some of my favorite YA heroines.


There are a few things that bothered me a bit:

a. as much as short skirts =/= anything bad and YAY for girls wearing them if they want to and not wearing them if they don't want to, but it bothered me that Gabrielle is 16 and when it's described as all the men stopped doing and thinking what they were doing and thinking, and were mesmerized by her; I meaaaan ok that's cool I don't mind it, but she's 16! She's just a kid and it made me really, really uncomfortable that grown up men would ogle her like that yikes.

b. I simply wish that we got to know the crew a lot more in depth, because they're all so great and I'm already in love with them, but more physical description, personality traits, background etc would have been nice. Things such as where did the crew know Simon from? How did the brothers end up at Uncle Eddie's? Where is Gabrielle's dad? etc but since there are two more books (and possibly more?) this may occur later, so fingers crossed!

I figured out one of the twists but other than that this book was entertaining and SUPER DUPER SHIPPY!!!!! Let me tell you: I. HAD. FEELS. (all over the place)

First more than 3 stars of the year! /fist pump/ Can't wait to see what happens next and the preview at the end of the book promises more awesome mysterious things in continuation for the previous book. I'm excited to learn more!

*you can see the graphic in HQ on my tumblr in a Heist Society graphic set here.
Profile Image for Emily (Obsessed Reader).
429 reviews284 followers
January 10, 2016
Review when I first read this book, September 2011: 3 Stars. I REALLY liked this book! Very different from what I am used to reading, which is fantasy and chick-lit. I really liked the story line, and I can't wait to read the second book!
The only thing I wish was different about this book, is the main character, Kat. I like her, but I feel like I didn't know enough about her. I found myself wanting to know more about her personality, or her past.
With that aside, I loved just about everything else.
I really enjoyed this book, and would recommend this to anyone looking for a quick, yet interesting and thrilling book.

UPDATED REVIEW January 2016: Still a 3 star book for me. I enjoyed it the second time around, and I had forgotten most of what happened. It was such an easy, fast-paced read, and I enjoyed the change of pace from the heavier, slower-paced books I have been reading lately. It was fun, definitely targeted toward younger readers, but I personally tend to love that stuff too! I will definitely be continuing with the second book soon. I want to finally check this off of my unfinished-series list.
Profile Image for Izza Mae (books&teacups).
142 reviews51 followers
July 21, 2019
Actual Rating: 3.5 Stars

I didn't take off with this book at first because the story was progressing too fast without proper introduction of the plot, setting, and characters.

But as the story went on, I got used to the author's fast transition style and, honestly, had a fun reading experience.

Katarina Bishop, or simply Kat for short, is the protagonist of the story. As most teenagers, she was having an identity confusion, and in her case, her role between a normal teenage girl and a world-renowned thief.

She enrolled (conned her way) in a top class boarding school for her to leave her identity as a thief but then was eventually sucked back in the thieving world in order to de-frame her father from stealing some paintings from a well-knowned tycoon.

That is the start of her heist to prove her father's innocence and that is to re-steal the paintings from the real thief.

For a book which is less than 300 pages, the author delivered the story quite well. But frankly, it could use some more plot and character/relationship development.
392 reviews333 followers
July 4, 2011
Rating: 4.5 stars

Favourite Quote: "It is an occupational hazard that anyone who has spent her life learning how to lie eventually becomes bad at telling the truth."

Heist Society is a brilliant read! It was fun and fast paced and I loved every minute of it.

Kat is a 15 year old retired thief or was until she was forced to get back in the family business in order to save her Dad. Her father has been set up, accused of stealing paintings from a mobster type of guy that lead to some very dangerous consequences. With help from her crew including the yummy Hale she is going to steal the painting back and clear her father's name. But this is the biggest and most dangerous heist of Kat's life.

Carter has written a well thought out plot. They were surprises around every corner and it certainly kept me on the edge of my seat. I loved that I could never predict what was going to happen next. It was exciting and completely addictive.

And the characters what a funny, warm and brave bunch! I would love to hang out with Kat and the crew. Kat is strong, determined and instantly likeable. And I loved the dynamics between Kat and her friends. There is plenty of witty dialogue that ensured I was grinning the whole way through.

There is a tiny bit of romance. You can see there are some feelings between Kat and a certain thief. Carter is taking the slow and natural progression which I love. Although further down the series I am sure I am going to begging for Carter to make something happen. But for now I am enjoying the playful and some time sweet banter.

"Dancing. Come on. You can do it. It's a lot like navigating through a laser grid. It requires rhythm.' He moved her hips to the beat of the distant music. 'And patience.' He spun her around slowly and back toward him. 'And it's only fun if you trust your partner.' The dip was so slow, so smooth that Kat didn't know it was happening until the world was already turned upside down and Hale's face was inches from her own.
Count me in, Kat.' He squeezed her tighter. 'You should always count me in."

After finishing this I am left thinking to myself why didn't I read this earlier and of course had to start book #2 Uncommon Criminals immediately. I definitely recommend this if you are looking for a fun novel with entertaining characters and a fantastic premise. Don't miss out on this awesome series.
Profile Image for nαомι αndιno.
175 reviews54 followers
April 1, 2021
I loved Ally Carter’s Gallagher Girls and I love reading about heists so obviously I had to check this out.

Katarina Bishop’s father (Bobbys) is (falsely) accused of stealing from Arturo Taccone and now Kat has 12 days to get the paintings back. SO basically this is the YA version of Ocean’s Eleven (which I LOVE). I liked all the characters though I wish we had more background info on them. Where are Gabrielle’s parents? I feel like this series would have been much better if the characters were at least 18.

Why I couldn’t give it 5 stars:
✘For some weird reason some chapters started in third person narrative and three paragraphs in they turned to Kat’s first person POV and that was just weird and confusing.
✘I liked Kat but making her sometimes use those I’m not like other girls sentences really pissed me off.
✘Also I would have enjoyed it more if Kat actually embraced the fact that she’s great at stealing instead of trying to run away from it.
✘I was originally really excited about Arturo Taccone, especially as he was implied to be a really bad guy (it’s implied that he’s in the mob) but there was NO actual evidence that he was evil. Kat (a 15 year old child) wasn’t even that afraid of him.
Profile Image for Allyson Jamison.
125 reviews
October 25, 2020
The storyline and plot were fabulous! However, I found myself confused often by the wording of certain scenes. Also, while I loved the characters and story, I did not appreciate a couple of scenes and therefore am giving it a lower rating. Only the fact that I thoroughly loved the story am I not giving it any lower of a rating. Would still recommend it but read with discernment.
Profile Image for alexandra.
229 reviews1,510 followers
September 3, 2020
i've been meaning to read this for YEARS (like eight years) and i finally got around to listening to the audiobook. it reminded me so much of How to Steal a Million and i loved how fun it was. the characters, romance, and action were all solid; now i need to read the sequel!
Profile Image for Liz* Fashionably Late.
435 reviews386 followers
March 4, 2013
3.5 Stars
First Marie Lu with Legend and now Ally Carter... Let me ask you one thing, what kind of sixteen year old kids were you back then?

My big and only problem with this book is how a couple of sixteen year old kids manage to do extraordinary things despite not being this a fantasy book? Or was it? Why so goddamn young?

Heist Society was good, very good. The kind of book you can read on a sunny afternoon. It was funny, smart, light and so delightfully written. Kind of Ocean's Eleven for YA, but instead of steamy George, you have dreamy W.W. Hale. I loved the narrative POV. It made it a lot more interesting than if it'd have been told from Kat's POV. Maybe it was short but I never felt bored. There wasn't unnecessary lame romance, all the characters were captivating, the two brothers reminded me of George and Fred, Simon was so cute and the beautiful cousin is spin-off material, all the way.

The bad guy? Yeah, not so bad guy for me. Kind of amusing, actually. However, I really liked this book. Can't wait to read Uncommon Criminals.
Profile Image for Amanda .
432 reviews153 followers
May 15, 2018
You can also find my review here: https://devouringbooks2017.wordpress....

I have always been intrigued by thieves and con artists. The books that are written about them are always fascinating. Part of the reasons Six of Crows is my favorite novel is because of the cons. When I was in middle school I read a few books by Ally Carter and I thought it was about time I revisited her writing.

Recently I found myself wondering why the Mona Lisa was so famous, it's not that great of a painting, so what gives? So I looked into it and it's famous because it was stolen and they actually suspected Pablo Picasso. Art thieves really do exist. So I wanted to read about the measures that it would take to pull off a heist like that in today's world, and that is exactly the story Ally Carter provides here.

She executes a very well planned plot in this book. It moves fast, keeps you guessing and had a few good twists along the way. Heist Society also sets the scene as an opener for a potentially great series about professional thieves. It was nice to revisit an old author of mine and Heist Society was a fast, fun read.
Profile Image for Alaina.
6,122 reviews215 followers
June 23, 2018
Heist Society is the first book of the Heist Society series. Now even though it was the introduction to this series.. it was confusing to say the least.

Now I'm not saying the entire book was confusing.. mostly because it wasn't. No, it was interesting, boring, confusing, and then back to being interesting. It was a whirlwind of an emotional roller coaster while reading this book.

Kat, the MC, was meh to me. She wasn't spectacular or anything outside of other MC's I've read about. She was completely selfish and did whatever she waned to do. She was also super shallow and definitely made me dislike her every damn page and chapter. Besides her, the other characters were meh to me. I just couldn't connect with them and it honestly frustrated the hell out of me. I like having some sort of connection with any character in a book.. but the ones in this one were just annoying and frustrating.

Overall, it was an okay book. I probably wont go out of my way to reread this book and I have no idea if I will dive into the second book of this series.
Profile Image for Abby.
528 reviews111 followers
March 13, 2021
"Did my father put you up to this?"
Hale exhaled a quick laugh and shook his head. "He hasn't returned my calls since Barcelona." He leaned closer and whispered, "I think he might still be mad at me."
"Yeah, well, that makes two of us."
"Hey," Hale snapped. "We all agreed that the monkey seemed perfectly well trained at the time."

what an iconic book, I love it so much. hopefully I'll remember to properly review it this time around. 4.5 stars from me.
Profile Image for Sharon Mariampillai.
1,988 reviews86 followers
May 4, 2019
This was an enjoyable read. The concept really intrigued me as it was a ya Thriller and that they were going to steal art. I thought the pace was great, it made me feel engaged and drawn to the story. The story itself was well written and I found the characters to be smart and interesting. Also, I thought that the ending was great and I can’t wait to read the second book. I am a fan of Ally Carter’s but she really made me engaged with this book. Overall, a great read.
Profile Image for PurplyCookie.
942 reviews201 followers
May 30, 2011
After a childhood spent assisting her father, one of the world’s most talented art thieves, Katarina Bishop tries to leave the family business behind when she forges her way into a New England boarding school.

She quickly discovers, though, that her past is inescapable. Her father has been accused of stealing already stolen masterpieces from a dangerous Italian billionaire. Certain that her father is innocent, Kat resolves to find the missing paintings and return them to their unsavory owner, who has given her a two-week deadline.

Her dad is currently under surveillance by Interpol (a result of the job he was actually pulling on the night the paintings were stolen), so that leaves Kat to discover who pulled the art heist and get the mobster's paintings back before he starts hurting the people she loves.

In her discreet way, Carter sets the stage for a future romance, but the reader is left wondering if it will be Hale, fellow thief, or Nick, whose mom is investigating Kat's father. In a world of rushed romances in literature, it is refreshing to see a romance built slowly over friendship. One of the best parts of this book is how Carter weaved some history into the art heist when Kat "meets" Mr. Romani, who is working diligently to recover artwork stolen by the Nazis. Hopefully in future books, readers will be able to learn more about Kat's parents and perhaps how the family started stealing in the first place.

This is a thoroughly enjoyable, cinema-ready adventure, and the details of thieving tools and techniques, lavish settings, and cast of eccentric characters, including possible spies and love interests, all add texture and depth to the action.

Carter's style is conversational, smooth, and clever, exposing Kat's wry humor and her steely determination. Amid themes of family loyalty and identity, the protagonist comes to understand herself, her beliefs, and her place in her family.

More of Purplycookie’s Reviews @: http://www.goodreads.com/purplycookie

Book Details:

Title Heist Society (Heisty Society #1)
Author Ally Carter
Reviewed By Purplycookie
Profile Image for ivy.
198 reviews31 followers
June 16, 2021
3.5 Stars

After a period of not reading, this was the perfect book to get back into things. It was super easy to read and quite intriguing.

At the same time, I had to keep reminding myself why I cared. These characters were fun and did their job, but I wasn't as attached to them as I would have liked.

I went into this knowing absolutely nothing about it, besides the fact that it was written by the author of Gallagher Girls , which is one of my favourite series ever.

This one didn't quite compare. It felt lacking, yet I don't exactly know why.

Nonetheless, I'm excited to read the remainder of the series, and I'm hoping it will improve!
Profile Image for Rebecca L.
Author 3 books81 followers
June 3, 2015
This book was like a mash up of National Treasure and the Pink Panther movies!

Kind of slow at times, and not enough detail or explanation at other, it was overall a fun and quick read with a lot of suspense and build up. I felt that it would have been better if it had of been written in first person and I didn't like the love triangle between Hale, Kat, and Nick but than I usually don't like love triangles so maybe its just me.

As I said overall a enjoyable read and I will be reading the next ones to find out who the mysterious visily romani is!
Profile Image for Jae (Bookish Bluebird).
138 reviews43 followers
June 6, 2015
4.5 stars!
I love heist movies so I guess it's not much of a surprised that I really enjoyed this book!! I loved the countdown pages and how this book made me feel like I've traveled the world as part of their team haa. There were some scenes that I wished I could have seen since I had trouble visualizing some of the details of their heist even with the descriptive narrative. The characters were all fantastic and hilarious. The crew dynamic was my favorite!

Full review to come!
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