White Cat: (Curse Workers 1) by Holly Black
Curse working is illegal, and curse workers are branded as scoundrels and con artists. Cassel is the only one in his family who's not a curse worker. Although he's the "straight" kid in a cursed family, he killed his best friend, Lila, years ago. How he's having terrifying dreams of a white cat and suspects a secret plot between his brothers. He'll have to unravel his past to out-con the people he thought he knew best.
I just finished this book. While I initially had a hard time getting into it due to lack of time, once I finally sat down I really enjoyed it.
What I particularly liked was that the magic took place in today's real world. The only difference was that there was a ban on magic and that everyone wore gloves. On top of that, if you work a curse, you get a blow back. For example, someone who can tamper with memories and take them away, they too loose some memory. The more curse work you do, the more memory you loose.
The book revolves around Cassel, a boy who has truly had a run of bad luck. Not only does he come from a criminal family, but he finds out he can't really trust his older brothers or mom. I won't divulge more information though! The author does not hold back on real life details and at times the book is a bit gritty (ie, showing of blood, vomit, fighting...).
At the end of the book there is the suggestion that if you use your talent for good you don't experience a blow back and I would like to see more of that in the next book. This is by no means a complete ending, much like all of Holly Blacks books, even her last book in Modern Faerie Tale has an opened plot, although it's much more concluded than book 1 and 2 in that series.
I truly look forward to rest of the series!
Again, I find myself wanting to give this book 10 stars. It's a rare find in so many ways and did not leave me very disappointed!