Black Heart (Curse Workers Series #3)

Black Heart (Curse Workers Series #3)


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Black Heart 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 38 reviews.
Ozzy12 More than 1 year ago
The cover is awesome. The story had me hooked. Great Read!
kitreadsobsessively More than 1 year ago
An intriguing close to the always riveting Curse Workers trilogy. Cassel has to choose between following his dubious family legacy, or working with the "good guys." The problem is, the good guys may not be so good. Sometimes, it really is best to stick to your roots. Lila remains a fascinatingly complicated character. Sam and Daneca work through relationship issues. Barron and Cassle's mom continue to provide as much frustration as familial love. Though this is supposedly the last book of the series, there is one big question left purposefully unanswered, so there might a possibility of more adventures for Cassel & Co in the future. I can't recommend this series enough! Keep an eye out for Holly Black in the future.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a great start to a wonderful seried.
bell7 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Cassel Sharpe is back in this third book of the "Curse Workers" series. Now Cassel knows he is a transformation worker, and finds his loyalties divided between Lila & his family on the one hand and the federal agents who promise him a life on the right side of the law on the other. Meanwhile, a schoolmate asks for his help when someone blackmails her. As a con artist from a family of workers, Cassel knows she's not telling him the whole truth, and he's not sure who to trust.I've enjoyed this series because Cassel is such an interesting character, someone who is genuinely conflicted between the life he's always known, loyalty to family, and a desire to do the right thing. The pace is fast, keeping me up late turning pages and, even though Cassel is the narrator, surprising me with what he holds back. The end was such that I wasn't sure whether to expect more or not, but either way it's a satisfying read.
andyhollums on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Holly Black is a Curse Worker!There is absolutely nothing that I dislike about Black Heart or the rest of the Curse Workers series! Holly Black is one of my favorite authors. She hooked me with the Tithe series and gave me no room to wiggle off the line with her current film-noir-mixed-with-some-paranormal crime drama.****Alert: Since this a review for book three of a series, it contains spoilers for anyone who hasn't read White Cat and Red Glove. If you find yourself in that unenviable position, you need to immediately step away from your computer, use the fastest means of transportation available to you, and get yourself to a bookstore so you can begin reading what is sure to become one of your favorite series. (If you're new to Holly Black, then you've got even more catching up to do. Don't miss out on Tithe, Valiant, and Ironside!) Now back to the review. Cassel Sharpe is an eminently sympathetic character. He's a loyal friend/brother/son. He has a surprisingly strong sense of right and wrong, considering he was raised in a family of supernatural thieves and con artists. A family which lied to him and made him believe he was the black sheep without the power to alter people's memories, make them fall in love, or kill them with a single touch. He was the outcast since he wasn't a "Curse Worker". Just one problem: He is a curse worker. And not just any curse worker, but a transformation worker. He has the ability to turn you into anyone or anything he wants. So they used him to commit murders and to transform his best friend and only girl he ever loved into a cat, then erased his memory of it (White Cat). In attempt to set things straight his mom, the emotion worker, curses the girl to fall in love with him. So now he can't be with her because he knows it's not real and refuses to take advantage of the situation (Red Glove). It's amazing that he doesn't go on a psychopathic rampage transforming everyone into beanbag chairs! In Black Heart he's got the Feds hounding him to join their Licensed Minority Division so they can have the rarest and most feared type of curse worker as their own weapon. Then there's the crime boss (and father of the girl of his dreams) who's holding his mother hostage until he can retrieve a diamond she once stole from him. And just for fun, let's throw in a terrified girl from school who begs him to help her deal with a blackmailer, while clearly holding back some vital information. There's just so much being thrown at this kid from every angle. But he just takes it all in stride and stays one step ahead while everyone thinks they're playing him.Black Heart is a fast paced, fun, and extremely well written novel. The characters and situations are completely believable. The setting is beautifully constructed. The plot is well thought out and perfectly executed. Exactly what I've come to expect from Holly Black, who clearly works her magic by touching her fingers to a keyboard. For writing this solid, the blowback must be crazy!
renkellym on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Holly Black has done it again! I swear, this woman is incapable of writing a bad book. Black Heart is just as darkly humorous and exciting as the last two books in the Curse Worker trilogy! I would argue that the stakes are even higher this time around¿there are three major issues that Cassel needs to deal with, all involving different groups of people: his family, his friends, and the Feds. Holly Black does a great job of balancing all three storylines and ending the book with all problems resolved. The manner of resolution, however, isn¿t easy¿each of the conflicts Cassel is facing have their own twists, and you¿ll find yourself surprised at every single one. But Holly Black proved that she¿s stellar at plot twists in the first two Curse Worker books; I shouldn¿t be surprised by her skill, but I always am.Aside from the complexity of the story and cons, Black Heart continues to excel in terms of characters. Cassel has slowly grown over the course of the series, and in Black Heart he evolves the most. His signature snark is still intact, but he¿s not so much of a self-loathing moper anymore. I can¿t get enough of Cassel¿s narration¿he¿s just a funny, quirky guy. The side characters are just as wonderful as always¿I love Sam, Cassel¿s roommate, Lila, and even Zacharov has his moments.As a finale, Black Heart is perfect. We get answers to some questions that have followed Cassel through all three books, we¿re given time with each of the characters (we¿ll remember them fondly!), and we get to read through a really good con. What more could a reader ask for?If you¿ve read the previous two Curse Worker books, you absolutely must pick up Black Heart. It doesn¿t disappoint! But whatever your expectations are, prepare to be completely surprised¿the ending to this fabulous series is unpredictable!
rivkat on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Third book in Black¿s curse workers series (possibly a trilogy; there is an ending to this book). Cassel Sharpe, now secretly working with the feds, has to deal with ongoing problems at school and with the love of his young life, formerly cursed to love him and now virulently angry at him. If that¿s not enough, she¿s part of a powerful crime family and her father will kill him if the truth comes out. Also, the feds want him to assassinate a governor who¿s looking to intern curse workers in detention camps. So, you know, he has a busy schedule. It¿s a quick, fun read with a dash of con artistry, and maybe his personal problems are solved with relative ease, but these are teenagers and I¿m willing to believe they can turn on a dime in this way, curses or not.
kayceel on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Through events in Red Glove, Cassel is now 'sort of' working for the federal government, helping his older brother, Barron, practice his skills, all while worrying about Lila, the girl he loves who is working do her mob boss father. Cassel, Barron and Lila are all curse workers, people who can affect changes in anyone they touch fingertips to skin. As curseworking is outlawed, working for crime families or clandestinely for the government are the few jobs open to those who aren't hiding their abilities,along the world a hostile place. Cassel is a rare transformation worker, with a criminal miter on the run, so when the Feds request his aid in targeting a senator hell-bent on sibling out workers, he must finally decide where his loyalty lies.Cassel is funny, smart and a clever con artist, which hes been raised to be by his family of con artists. His plots are sneaky and twisty, and Black does a wonderful job in keeping the reader guessing to the end. Her world of curse workers is detailed yet seemingly effortlessly done, and I've simply adored the time spent in this world.Do not miss out on this series!!! Start with White Cat and be prepared to enjoy!Highly recommended for older teens (there is a sexy scene that fades to black as the characters undress, and there is some violence).
mountie9 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The Good Stuff Fabulous ending to the trilogy (at least I think its a trilogy) as it leaves things open if she wants to write more, but will satisfy you if she doesn't Cassel is a very intriguing and likeable character and actually very life like Fantastic secondary characters - though would have liked more of Cassel's grandfather and Sam Very fast paced and plenty of twists and turns that keep you wondering who is conning who Actually my favorite of the series Wonderful humour and snappy dialogue Black is a excellent storyteller who has created an unusual world with a bit of an X men vibe thrown in Interesting observations on human nature, prejudice, forgiveness, nature of evil, right and wrong, etc Male protagonist that is written by a women but not so over the top emo like most YA males, -- really liked Cassel and would be proud to have him as a son. sex is handled tastefully One thing that really impressed me is that she has worked some character development into Cassel's family. In the first book they were pretty much a caricature - now they have been fleshed out and you can understand them a lot better Can we please have a book about the grandpa -- I love him -- oooh how about a prequel The Not So Good Stuff the cover on my arc is blah -- hopefully the cover on the final product is nicer A wee bit confusing at times as she jumps around a little Favorite Quotes/Passages " Barron's a sociopath. They're very convincing. Especially if you're one of those girls who thinks she can fix a boy." "Over the last few months I got every last thing I ever wanted - and then I threw it all away. Everything I thought I could never have was offered up on a silver platter- the girl, the power, a job at the right hand of, Zacharov, the most formidable man I know. It wouldn't have been that hard to work for him. It probably would have been fun. And if I didn't care who I hurt, it would still be all mine." "That's family for you. Can't live with them; can't murder them. Unless Barron rats me out to Yulikova. Then I really might."Who Should/Shouldn't Read If you haven't read the rest of the series I wouldn't recommend you read this without reading them Adults and YA will both enjoy (although most of the adults are douche bags)4.25 Dewey'sI received from Simon and Schuster in exchange for an honest review
krau0098 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is the third, and final, book in the Curse Workers series by Black. I think readers who really love this series will enjoy how the series is tied up. Things are tied up in a hopeful, yet realistic way, which I really enjoyed. I personally haven¿t been a huge fan of this series, I am not bit on organized crime fantasy, but that being said I think this was the best book in the series.I listened to this on audiobook and the audiobook was very well done. The narrator sounds exactly like I imagined Cassel would.Cassel is trying to turn his life around and do the right thing. Sure his ex-girlfriend is forever tied to a life of crime, but Cassel is trying hard to not follow where she is going. Cassel is thinking about working for the Feds because at least they are on the good side right? But when the Feds ask him to do something with his Transformation that he swore never to do, Cassel is forced to question everything. Who is being conned and who is doing the conning? The future of his mother, his brother, and the love of his life, Lila, all depend on him sorting out what¿s true and what¿s a con.Cassel just breaks your heart in this book. He is just trying so hard to do what¿s right but at points what is right is incredibly hard to figure out. That¿s not to say he ever gets stupid; he knows a con when he sees one and is all about conning the person pulling a con.Lila isn¿t in the beginning of the book a ton, but she does feature later on. A lot happens between her and Cassel in this book, and that is all I am going to say about that. Lila is an interesting character; her path to a life of crime doesn¿t seem to bother her a¿s just her life and she makes the best of it.Cassel¿s brother Barron and his mother are also in the story quite a bit. Barron is, well, he¿s Barron. He¿s working for the Feds but still loosing memories. Cassel¿s mother is the same; she loves her sons but never seems to struggle with her morals over the decisions she makes.This whole book is really about the struggle between being good and being bad and how there are no clear answers...everything is just too complicated.The books ends absolutely perfectly. There are some things left unresolved, just like real life. I love how things are left between Cassel and Lila; the ending just fits the tone of the story perfectly.Overall a great conclusion to this series. This was my favorite book of the trilogy. It ties things up nicely, has a great tangle of mysteries to engage the reader, and is just absolutely realistic in the way it ends. Fans of the series should be pleased.
ExLibris_Kate on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I was so happy to dive into this series again to see what the Sharpe brothers were up to. As we learned at the end of Red Glove, the Feds made an offer to Barron and Cassel, and they accepted, although Barron likes to think he's playing both sides (no surprise there). As Cassel navigates the very treacherous path of political intrigue, tortures himself over his love for Lila and tries to find his mom, he continues to deal with school. I loved some of the story lines that blended school life and personal life. His school friends and mobster family are the crazy and dysfunctional pieces that make up his life. In fact, I was drawn into the story so much that I actually felt sorry for Barron in one situation. Can you believe it? Cassel is as heartbreakingly vulnerable as always, dredging up all kinds of confusing feelings. The beauty of Cassel is that you don't know whether you want to make out with him or make him a hot meal because his mom is such a disaster. Maybe both. (I'm sure a therapist would have a heyday with that little statement.) However you categorize your feelings, he is the ultimate anti-hero with a desire to perhaps do some good, but mostly avoid trouble.There is a lot of fast paced action in this book, but it's the characters that make it amazing. With Cassel, there is a deep sense, although he tried so hard to live a "normal" life, that he doesn't feel he deserves to be treated as anything more than a worthless criminal. These feelings are confronted in a wonderful scene with Lila, but even before that, his actions tell you that somewhere in there is a kid who really wants things to work, who still has hope that maybe things really will work out for him. That contrast between what Cassel wants and the reality of his world is what makes this series so appealing. He can literally transform himself into anything, but he can't ever really change who he is and where he comes from. Fans of these books will love this final installment. The character development is seamless from one book to the next and up until the last scene there are surprises waiting to be discovered.I am so sad that this series is over, but I loved the ending. These books were perfect from beginning to end and this series will forever be on my all time favorites list. Thank you, Holly Black.
foggidawn on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Black Heart by Holly Black is the conclusion of the Curse Workers trilogy, and I'm finding it hard to explain the series. First of all, if you're at all interested -- if, for instance, you like urban fantasy, or reading about original, well-developed magic systems, you should start with White Cat, where you can meet teenage con man Cassel Sharpe and his mob family and preppy boarding school friends. You can immerse yourself in a world where some individuals have the ability to work curses by touch, so everyone in society wears gloves to prevent being worked. And you can avoid the spoilers that will be included in the rest of this review.In Black Heart, Cassel is working for the Feds -- or is he? After all, Cassel will always look out for Cassel first, and he hasn't made a definite commitment to the Feds yet. Still, they need his unique talents for a big job. If he plays his cards right, he may be able to make everyone happy: the Feds, his family, the crime boss, his friends, the mob, and Lila -- the girl he loves, who was cursed to love him back and . . . well, it's complicated. Then again, if Cassel messes up, the consequences could be deadly. Will Cassel be able to pull off "the Big One?"I liked this book just as much as the first two in the series. Cassel has a strong, smart (and smart-alecky) voice, and he was a lot of fun to read about, as always. The plot came together nicely, though it seemed just a little bit more straightforward than the other two books. That may be because this book has a definite ending, wrapping up loose ends nicely. A satisfying conclusion to the trilogy.
AyleeArgh on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
In short: Holly Black raises the stakes in Black Heart, the thrilling conclusion to the brilliant and ingenious Curse Workers Trilogy.I was so excited to return to the dark world of curse workers and con men in Black Heart, the third and final book in the Curse Workers Trilogy. White Cat and Red Glove, the previous two books in the trilogy by Holly Black, were fast-paced and terribly clever, with brilliant characters and effortless writing. I was anxious to find out what would happen to our favourite characters in Black Heart and if Holly Black could best herself to come up with the perfect conclusion to an awesome series. I am happy to say I believe she does!I am beyond impressed by the skill and proficiency with which Holly Black writes. Black Heart has three main, separate story lines and problems that Cassel finds himself having to deal with all at once. I am amazed that at such a small number of pages - less than 300! - Black Heart never feels cluttered or rushed. Instead, the multiple plot lines makes Black Heart not only the most intense of the three books in the series, but also makes it near impossible to put down.Cassel is officially one of my most favourite male protagonists of all time. He is the suave and arrogant bad boy on the surface, hiding his true demeanor as a compassionate and often insecure teenager. He faces more pressure and trouble than ever in Black Heart as he is seemingly pulled in multiple different directions with no ideal outcome. And just when you're wondering how is he ever going to get himself out of all these predicaments, Cassel finds a way to cleverly avoid trouble and selflessly give support to those in need.Black Heart is the prefect conclusion to an ingenious and original fantasy trilogy. The ending is left a bit open, but all major story lines are wrapped up nicely. I am a new and vocal fan of Holly Black's after reading this series and I look forward to reading more from her in the future!
skaohee on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The FINAL book in The Curse Worker¿s Series! What will happen to Cassel? What will happen to Lila? I NEEDED TO KNOW. And I found out.Black Heart was a great ending to the story of Cassel, Lila, and the crew. Loose ends were tied up and people, essentially, got what was coming to them. Did I like it as much as the first two? No, but that¿s because it felt like not enough stuff was going on. It wasn¿t as thrilling as the first two and I guess that usually happens in the final book of a series. I wanted more from Black Heart but let me be clear that I still loved this book.Cassel really comes into his own in this book. I don¿t know quite how to describe it but he goes from being ¿baby bird brother¿ to a REAL MAN. And I¿ve enjoyed watching him learn and grown over this series.I recommend this series to all readers, especially if you¿re looking for something VERY unique and yet, can be paralleled with our world today.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this series so much!! I only wish the books were a little longer. I want to hold on to the fantasy that these books brought to my world!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great story with a great ending!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I wish Holly would make a 4th book!!!
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love this book from the very first book i was book on there's bookd i could not stop reading theirs books the auther doed such a great job i just wish there was more the three books it kinda bumed me out but i would recommened this book
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BooksWithBite More than 1 year ago
I’m so happy and excited that I read this book. Really happy. I have to say though, I’m sad to see the series end. I can see it opening door to other stories that I wish I can read. With that said, I really loved this series as a whole. Plot. Through out this series as well as each book, the plot has been consistent in growing and leading the reader to a whole other world. A world full of magic and chaos. I’m really loved how easy it was for me to open the book read the first page and I’m in. Back in Cassal’s shoe ready to play the game he’s been playing he’s whole life. In this story, every chapter is just as exciting as the last. Every moment of Cassal life leads up to final magic trick that can save him or break him,. Characters. The minor characters in the book go father with Cassal. Most have supported him and befriended him. Others just continuously stabbed him in the back. Through out the series and in this story particularly, you can see Cassal’s strength. He is much more sure of himself, finding strength in places he didn’t realize he had. I admired him to make things work out for him. He needs it. Love. Through Cassal’s messed up life he has faced many demons. Cassal has finally taken something for himself. It has been difficult and hard, but the reader see’s Cassal over come all of that. He has lost so much and fights for what he has left. Hope and love. I could name more points but I think if I keep going, I’ll just spill the ending. Which for me, is the best part. Vague and complete, Cassal takes what he wants and runs for it. Good for you kid! No amount of words can describe how much I love this series. Black Heart is exciting yet moves forward with such enticement and thrills you can’t help but be hooked. A compelling piece of work that completes the series, Black Heart is memorable.
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