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Aces Up

3.40  ·  Rating details ·  4,954 ratings  ·  294 reviews
Seventeen-year-old high school senior Shannon Card needs money. And lots of it. She's been admitted to Wellesley, but her dad just lost his job, and somehow she has to come up with a year of tuition herself. But Shannon's dream of making big bucks waitressing at the local casino, the Collosio, disappears faster than a gambler's lucky streak. Her boss is a tyrant, her cowor ...more
Paperback, 272 pages
Published August 10th 2010 by Ember
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3.40  · 
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 ·  4,954 ratings  ·  294 reviews

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May 05, 2010 rated it really liked it
Aces Up is a full house of pure enjoyment! What a great read that fans of YA and Lauren Barnholdt will feel is an absolute hit.

The cast of characters in this book are engaging and refreshing, and the story is perfectly narrated by Shannon Card delivering an adventure that's face paced, bold and energetic. I loved Shannon's wit, daring choices and mental tangents because she came across as a relatable character that was easy to sympathize for. The plot was unique for YA but I did notice some sim
I'm a big fan of Lauren Barnholdt's Two-Way Street and One Night That Changes Everything so I was surprised this book turned out to just be okay for me. It was a good book, but I dunno, something just felt off with Aces Up.

While the characters were all uniquely written I don't think I liked any of them to be honest. Shannon seemed a bit all over the place and her inner thoughts was a little to hyper and scattered while the dialog was spazzy and repetitive. I though that Cole was nothing but a sh
Gertiebee * the little book bee *

3 'Secret-gambling-society' Stars



Shannon has a problem. Her family is in financial difficulty and can no longer afford to send her to Wellesley 'her dream college'. So she decides to bankroll her own way and finds a high-paying job (waitress in a casino). The problem? she's underage and has to lie to get it. To top it off, Shannon accepts an invitation to join a secret gambling society (Aces Up), and finds herself tangled in a massive web of illegal activity.

The love-interests


Apr 28, 2011 rated it liked it
I have to clarify that this is really a 3 1/2, I mean who wouldn't want to read about a secret society of poker players? seriously. This book was awesome in a light-hearted, laugh-out-loud funny, quick, and meaningful read; I really enjoyed it! Something about the writing style really appealed to me--it was like I was actually there apart of the story and going along for the ride.

I loved all the characters! Shannon was so real; I could really understand her, why she does what she does, not to me
Michelle. D.
Dec 21, 2010 rated it really liked it
I really like how the book started. And then the events that happened after that made it even better. I really liked all the characters in the book and there were some pretty funny scenes in it(or maybe that was just me thinking it was funny).
So the book is about a girl names Shannon who lies about her age to work in a casino to get money for college. She has to tutor, maintain good grades and keep up with her social life. At the casino, she meets a guy name Cole who tells her she is selected t
Nov 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2017
This was very cute! I liked the story and the characters a ton! I have been a huge fan of Barnholdt and her writing since I read Two Way Street. I thought the Shannon was a perfect main character, flaws and all. I loved her support system of friends and family throughout the novel. I thought the plot was great, even though it was highly unrealistic in terms of gambling and playing poker/ cheating while playing. Overall a very solid novel!

Longer review coming soon!
Brianna (The Book Vixen)
Apr 25, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: _cb, read-in-2010
When I found out that Lauren Barnholdt had an upcoming YA novel about a love triangle mixed in with a bit of poker, I knew it was going to be right up my alley. I really enjoyed reading Two-Way Street, also by Lauren Barnholdt, so I knew I had to read Aces Up.

Seventeen year old Shannon Card (I like how her last name fits with the theme of the book) needs to get a job to pay for college. Her father recently got laid off from his job, his car got repossessed and he had to sell his beloved boat. Ne
Karla Mae (Reads and Thoughts)
Apr 08, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2012-reads
Shannon Card, seventeen-year old senior needs money. Lots of it. Not for anything bad but for college. After her father loses his job, she must find a way to earn money. And so, she finds a job at a Casino working as a waitress.

A couple of days into her job, she receives an invitation to join Aces Up, a group of college students who has an extreme talent and luck in playing poker. At first she was skeptical because she has enough to worry about: keeping her job, winning the coveted math scholars
Feb 24, 2017 rated it did not like it
Aces up Book Review
The book Aces Up was definitely an interesting and weird read. This realistic-fiction read was about a 17-year-old girl named Shannon who had a goal of attending college to earn a degree in math. However, the money wasn’t available so going to her dream school was in jeopardy. Shannon’s plan to earn money ends up completely backfiring and could possibly kill her dreams of going to Wellesley.
The author Lauren Barnholdt chose to use inappropriate language throughout th
Dec 14, 2018 rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nov 29, 2017 rated it did not like it
This one star is me being super generous. I'm so glad I'm free of this book.
Jun 10, 2012 rated it it was ok
Shelves: english, romance
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 09, 2012 rated it really liked it
Ah, who knew I would fall in love with Aces Up? I've heard of Lauren Barnholdt's other books but Aces Up is the first of hers that I've actually read. I guess my brother really meant something when he said "That sounds good." Referring to the book.

You know those heist movies like Ocean's Eleven/Twelve/Thirteen or the Italian Job? I always love those badass films. But Aces Up is well yes, different but it involves money and casino. What comes to my mind whenever casino comes up are money, middle-
Michelle (Fluttering Butterflies)
This review was originally published at Fluttering Butterflies

Aces Up by Lauren Barnholdt is not at all like I'd expected it to be. From the cover, I really expected some light, flirtiness playing poker. And while there is poker, and there are relationships in this book, I found both aspects to be quite surprising.

Our main character in this story is Shannon Card. She's 17 and she's just been accepted for early admission into Wellesley College. It's a huge thing for her, she's been working so har
Chelsea Nicole
Aug 04, 2013 rated it it was ok
This book doesn't even deserve the OK rating I gave it. I just didn't want to be the jerk that gave it one star. Let me just start out by saying that Lauren Barnholdt has to secretly be a fourteen year old girl. There is no way she isn't. Her characters are always shallow and nondescript. I feel like she just throws a bunch of people together and calls it a book.
With that said let's start off by analyzing the plot. Which, surprisingly, was actually a really great idea if she would have pulled i
Savannah (Books With Bite)
Apr 25, 2014 rated it really liked it
This story totally reminds of the movie 21. It follow the similar line except without the whole teamwork aspect.

Plot: This is about a girl who is taking matters into her own hands. Young and smart, Shannon needs money for college. After taking a job, she discovers someone who can help her make more money than she ever in thought…in gambling. I found this story particular interesting because it feels exciting knowing that a groups has a game plan to win money. The plot moves fairly quickly after
Zoe and the Edge
I liked the characters in the story, from Robyn, her best friend big sister to self-appointed best friend Mackenzie who is very volatile and a little nutty, but I kind of liked her gusto. Even though there were rough patches, these two are wonderfully supportive and protective of Shannon in the long run. I even enjoyed Parvati’s character, the politely self-centered brainiac at Shannon’s school.

Shannon likes to rant. She’s the complete opposite of a one-tracked mind. Most of the time I like the
May 03, 2011 rated it really liked it
With summer finally here, Aces Up is the perfect book to lay outside under the sun and read. It is a quick, charming read that really draws you in. Though it's not as good as Lauren Barnholdt's other books, the story line is unique to other books I've read, but it is very similar to the movie 21. Aside from that, I really liked Shannon and felt for her when things didn't end up going her way during the book. Her relationship with Cole was kind of weird, but I loved her fragile relationship with ...more
May 30, 2011 rated it liked it
This was an enjoyable quick read, essentially a first person narrative of a smart girl's stupid choices. Those include a crazy fling with poker playing, hooking up with a sketchy guy, and losing touch with her friends, family and the guy she actually likes and deserves. So, put that way, it doesn't sound so funny, but it really is, due almost exclusively to her quirky and characterful narrative voice, which makes her bad decisions seem comprehensible, if not wise, and give her choices a surface ...more
Kayla Tawadros-Farinelli

When I first started reading this book my expectations were sorta high, since I read a lot of good reviews. I admit, I could not put this book down at one point, but then towards the end I started getting bored as the story wasn't really going there..I read this book all in one day actually! It was a very fast, easy and simple read. The plot wasn't big enough in my opinion, and the story's ending seemed kinda empty. I would have loved there to be some giant twist at the end, but sadly the endi
Apr 23, 2011 rated it liked it
Aces Up was just an ok read for me. As hard as I tried, I just really couldn't get into the storyline. The main character, Shannon was funny and likable, the friend she had a crush on, Max, was cute and endearing. Shannon's sister Robyn and fellow waitress and new BFF Mckenzie added a lot of humor to the story. And the Aces Up ringleader, Cole had just enough mystery to pull you in and was just enough of a jerk to have you rooting for Shannon at the end. All in all not one of my favs of Barnhold ...more
Jun 07, 2010 rated it liked it
It was an okay book, quick read. In the middle it gets pretty boring. I thought it would be a little bit like '21' The movie but its very different. Anyway, if your in a mood for drama and romance and comedy, then this is it
Dec 29, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2015
That was really awesome. But i was so confused about how is the bad boy here, is a really funny book and the thematic is great. I enjoyed so much!
Jolene Perry
Feb 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
Adorable and fantastic voice, which is what I love about her books :-)
Moon Love
Feb 26, 2013 rated it liked it
I liked this book. The subject of the book was great. It's fast paced and I like how I never really knew what was going to happen next.
Amanda (Good Choice Reading)

I'm a fan of Lauren Barnholdt's work, but this one fell flat for me. The main character was painfully naive and I just couldn't enjoy it like I have her other books.
Jun 16, 2010 rated it it was ok
Shelves: own
I like Lauren Bardholdt, I really do, but I did not like this book, not even a little bit.
Oct 11, 2015 rated it it was ok
I just kinda scowled at the last page and deleted the book off my phone.
Haley H
Sep 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
It was really good, but it didn't really catch my attention. My favorite book from this author is " Watch Me ".
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