26 March 2012

YA Book Review: Pretty Crooked by Elisa Ludwig

Release Date: 13 March 2012
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Format: eARC
Source: Publisher via NetGalley

Goodreads description:
Willa’s secret plan seems all too simple: take from the rich kids at Valley Prep and give to the poor ones.

Yet Willa’s turn as Robin Hood at her ultra-exclusive high school is anything but. Bilking her “friends”-known to everyone as the Glitterati-without them suspecting a thing, is far from easy. Learning how to pick pockets and break into lockers is as difficult as she’d thought it’d be. Delivering care packages to the scholarship girls, who are ostracized just for being from the “wrong” side of town, is way more fun than she’d expected.

The complication Willa didn’t expect, though, is Aidan Murphy, Valley Prep’s most notorious (and gorgeous) ace-degenerate. His mere existence is distracting Willa from what matters most to her-evening the social playing field between the have and have-nots. There’s no time for crushes and flirting with boys, especially conceited and obnoxious trust-funders like Aidan.

But when the cops start investigating the string of burglaries at Valley Prep and the Glitterati begin to seek revenge, could he wind up being the person that Willa trusts most
My Thoughts...
Willa Fox has never had the privilege of being one of the popular kids at school and she's honestly not sure she's finding it all that great. She hates the way that they treat the less fortunate kids at school and decides that she's going to do something about it.  In short, she's going to steal from the rich kids to give to the poorer ones. Every time she takes something she ups the stakes just a little bit until she's practically addicted to the adrenaline rush of stealing.  

I liked Willa pretty much from the get go.  While I thought her plan was a little underdeveloped, her heart seemed to be in the right place and she was an amusing character to follow.  I had fun reading about her training sessions with Tre and her various antics. Speaking of Tre--did anyone else want HIM to be the love interest? I understand (kind of) her physical attraction to Aidan, but I didn't really get why she was so fascinated with him.  Honestly, the romance doesn't play a huge role, but since there was one at all, I think I would have liked it to go a different direction. Who knows--maybe Aidan will be able to change my mind in book two.

The secondary storyline with her mom left me feeling really confused. We never get a good feel for what's going on with that aspect of the story and I felt really drawn to the mystery. I kept hoping that we'd get more information as the book went on, but there was nothing! The ending was left open (I suppose for a series), but it felt TOO open for me.  You still don't have ANY idea what was happening and I would have liked something--some kind of elaboration.

In the end, this book left me wanting a little bit more.  The writing is good and the storyline and characters make for an amusing read, but ultimately, the connection wasn't lasting.  If you're looking for a fun, quick read, this is one you might want to pick up, and there are plenty of reviews out there that would disagree with my take.  While I'll more likely than not read book two to find out what's up with her mom, this story simply didn't quite live up to my expectations.

Reading is a subjective experience and some people really loved this book! Here are a few links to 4 and 5 star reviews that you should check out if you're on the fence!


Heidi said...

I reviewed this a couple of weeks ago and as always we are thinking alike, you were a little kinder in your review. The whole mom plot and no answers really annoyed me as well as the bullying. I won't read the sequel just because I just didn't care anymore after reading this one. Hope you are well, i am sure you are up to your eyeballs in school. Miss hearing from you :)

Danny Bookworm said...

I really enjoyed this one much more :)) I found Willa cute and strong and I liked the storyline. I agree there could have been more, but I hope we are getting this in the next book! 

Reflections of a Bookaholic said...

I've never heard of this one but it sounds cute.  The Robin Hood idea in a High School setting seems like a unique premise.

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