Jillian -always aspiring-'s Reviews > Red Glove

Red Glove by Holly Black
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's review
Jul 27, 2010

really liked it
bookshelves: heroes-i-love-and-respect, 2011-reads, paranormal-supernatural-books, best-characters, best-endings, writing-to-which-i-aspire, amazing-storytelling, out-of-the-box-ideas
Recommended for: Anyone who enjoys books that twist and turn unpredictably
Read from April 28 to May 30, 2011

I've been sitting here for an hour trying to figure out what to say about this book in a review. Last summer, I read White Cat (the book prior to this one) and found myself enthralled by a world of curses, crime, and cons -- and at the center of the book was Cassel, a boy who couldn't decide between truth and lie, fact and fiction, good and evil, white and black.

It turned out that Cassel was as dichotomous as they come, gray to his core, doing bad things even if he has good reasons for them. He's a very real character because of that mess of indecision and the desire to do the right things, and he's part of what made White Cat so refreshing and fascinating compared to other paranormal young adult books that focus on true love and/or angst. Cassel's problems are very real and very serious, yet he somehow manages not to be crushed by all the burdens he has, whether they're from his own making or that of others.

Enter Red Glove. Though I've been picking this book up and reading pages at a time for the past month, I really did like it (however much my overlong reading time may try to prove differently). Cassel's world is as dangerous and untrustworthy as ever. His mother, still fresh out of prison, is up to no good as she continues to scam her way through as many "hits" and their wallets as she can. His one brother is now a friend while the other is an enemy who won't even speak to him. And added on top of all the personal drama is the fact that the girl Cassel loves has been worked (i.e. charmed, enchanted) to love him. What's a boy to do?

I honestly thought that Red Glove wouldn't live up to White Cat. Sequels don't usually live up to their predecessors. Yes, there are the rare occasions like Empire Strikes Back -- but, honestly, most people complain about sequels being filler that merely stalls for time until the finale (if the story is a trilogy). After reading as many sequels as I have (and seeing them on the big screen), I'm often mixed on "the sequel slump." Honestly, if I love a fictional world and its characters enough, I won't care much about how the story pales (or, in rare cases, shines) in comparison to the first; I'll just be happen to be immersed again in the world and find out what happens to the characters I am still willing to follow.

Red Glove held all that allure for me -- I want to follow these characters, I want to learn more about their world, I want to see how the story unfolds -- but it's not just one of those sequels that I read just so I could say I had. Yes, there were some slow-going moments, but the characters are great, the writing is really good, and the plot is the kind that anyone who loves a good mystery would like. But what really gets me are the twists and turns that Holly Black throws at her readers. There were a few instances in this novel where I just had to utter, "Oh my God!" simply because I was so amazed that the story managed to surprise me. Isn't it wonderful when you can't predict every little thing that may happen in a plot? Personally, I love when that happens. Keep on surprising me, Ms. Black, because I adore your storytelling for it.

Needless to say, the wait for Black Heart will not be fun. My advice to interested readers: go slow with the first two books if you decide to read them. You will likely be clamoring for the third as soon as you can get your hands on it.
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Quotes Jillian -always aspiring- Liked

Holly Black
“Magic gives you a lot of choices," Grandad says. "Most of them are bad.”
Holly Black, Red Glove

Reading Progress

04/28/2011 page 15
5.0% "I'd forgotten how much I love Cassel. Yes, he's flawed, but he strives for better in himself and in the world around him. Those are the kinds of characters that really stick with me since they reveal the dichotomy of humanity, good and bad intertwined into one beautiful mess of emotions, choices, and actions." 1 comment
04/30/2011 page 75
23.0% "I want more appearances from Lila in this book, dang it."
05/05/2011 page 96
30.0% "Okay, back to reading this one again. It's not that it isn't keeping my attention; rather, the problem is all me. I feel as though I'm just not in the right mood to appreciate this book as much as I could." 3 comments
05/30/2011 page 186
57.0% "Plot twist, plot twist!! I LOVE when books manage to surprise me with their twists and turns!"
07/16/2017 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-6 of 6) (6 new)

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message 1: by Erica (daydreamer) (last edited Apr 28, 2011 11:16AM) (new)

Erica (daydreamer) Jillian, how many books are you reading now? I have a hard time reading two or three books at the same time. If it's really good, I just can't stop reading it, if it's bad, I just want to read it as fast as possible to get it over with.

Caitlin He's one of my favorite leads in YA.

Lucy I'm hoping that "series" here means more than three books so much.

Alyssa Okay. NOW I know what to read!!!!! Awesome review!

message 5: by Cassie (new) - added it

Cassie Glad to read this! I really enjoyed White Cat and feared the sequel wouldn't be as good.

message 6: by S. (new) - rated it 5 stars

S. Davis I totally agree with wanting to see more of Lila in this book. I just started Black Heart and hope she is showcased more and that what is shown will be a character I still like, being that things have changed between she and Cassel.

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