Red Glove (Curse Workers, Book 2)

Book review by
Karen Wirsing, Common Sense Media
Red Glove (Curse Workers, Book 2) Book Poster Image
White Cat sequel is more mature, more fun.

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Kids say

age 16+
Based on 2 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this book.

Educational Value

Fans of this book may want to go on to read other fantasies and mysteries. See our recommended book lists for some ideas.

Positive Messages

Good versus evil themes. Cassel demonstrates the importance of standing up for what you believe in -- and teaches that we are not always victims of our environments. Some people are able to break the chains and flourish -- like he does. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

Cassel is a kindhearted and thoughtful teen. Although it's difficult for him to make the right decisions, (with his family encouraging him to make poor ones) he always does the commendable thing. Cassel has many opportunities to act selfishly upon situations that he would better from, but he refuses to take advantage of others even if it means he could come out on top. 

Violence

Cassel's mother hits him across the face. A riot takes place between political parties, and the police use unnecessary brutality against the workers. There are also references made to past murders. 

Sex

Cassel's mother dresses skimpily and wears heavy makeup, using her sex appeal to attract men. Lila has sex with a boy just to make Cassel jealous. Later, in a descriptive scene Cassel and Lila almost go all the way. Clothes are taken off, and there is passionate kissing and touching.

Language

Cassel's abusive mother calls him a "moron" and a "stupid idiot."  

Consumerism

This book is filled with brand names: Gucci, Mercedes Benz, Dolce & Gabbana, and Armani are thrown around as high-profile people advertise their wealth. Cassel has zero tolerance for the teens at his school who try so hard to keep up appearances, especially when he knows that none of it really matters in the larger scope of life.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Teens get drunk to forget about their problems. Teen characters smoke cigarettes, and there are a few scenes where people are doing cocaine. 

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this installment is more mature than the first book. Cassel's mother is psychologically unstable and projects her own self-loathing onto her son with emotional and physical abuse. Also, Lila has sex with a boy to make Cassel jealous and, later in a descriptive scene, Cassel and Lila almost go all the way. Clothes are taken off and there is passionate kissing and touching. Teens drink heavily to deal with the pain they are suffering from, and there are references to cocaine. But the protagonist is a good role model who refuses to bend to his bad upbringing: Cassel has many opportunities to act selfishly, but he refuses to take advantage of others and always does the commendable thing.

User Reviews

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Teen, 14 years old Written bynoveleater November 8, 2011

"We are all specialists in our own handwriting." (p.236)

And Holly Black has her own handwriting, or in this case, her own writing style that is fun and leaves for a fast paced thriller with romance, action, and just... Continue reading
Kid, 10 years old May 29, 2011

i love this book

it was good to me and i whant to say gogogogoggo to you gise

What's the story?

When 17-year-old Cassel Sharpe is pulled off his high school football field and handcuffed by federal agents, he worries they will question him about being a transformation worker -- the most dangerous and powerful type of curse worker who can use touch to transform anything; he also fears they may know that his brothers forced him to kill people -- and used magic to erase his memory of the events. Instead, the agents question him about his brother's murder -- and offer him a job working as one of them. But that's not the only career opportunity knocking at his door: The head of the most renowned mob family in the nation has also offered him a job -- promising him wealth in return for his powers. He is faced with a tough decision: live a life of luxury and crime or to live modestly -- and legally? It's a tough choice, especially when the love of his life, Lila, is the next in line to become head of the mob family.

Is it any good?

This book is more mature than White Cat, the first of its series, but it's more fun, too. Black's teen characters evolve into charming and independent free spirits here, from loner Cassel who struggles to do the right thing to hipster Lila, who is confident and comfortable in her own skin. Readers can't help but become enthralled with the characters' witty banter, which is both playful and boisterous. These well-developed characters add to the fun of this magical mystery installment. Readers will have plenty to sort out with the teen protagonist, including who he should trust with his life -- and his heart. 

 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the series. Which installment did you like better, this one or White Cat?  Did you notice any differences in the writing style -- or maturity level of the plot?

  • The marketing for this book claims, "the stakes get higher in book 2." What does that mean for book 3? Do sequels have to keep getting more intense to hold your interest?

Book details

For kids who love mystery and fantasy

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