February 23, 2012

Book Review: Pretty Crooked

Title:  Pretty Crooked
Author:  Elisa Ludwig
Published:  March 13, 2012
Copy Obtained:  NetGalley

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 new 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 break into lockers and Beemers is as hard as she'd thought it would be. Delivering care packages to the scholarship girls, who are bullied just for being different, is more fun than she'd expected. 
The complication Willa didn't expect, though, is Aidan Murphy, VP's most notorious ace-degenerate. His mere existence is distracting Willa from what matters most to her—evening the social playing field between the haves and have-nots. There's no time for flirting, especially with conceited trust-funders like Aidan. But when the cops start investigating the string of thefts at Valley Prep and the Glitterati begin to seek revenge, could Aidan wind up being the person that Willa trusts most?

My Thoughts
When I picked this book up to read I thought it sounded fun, light and interesting.  It was all three.
The book starts with Willa starting at a new private school after her mother sells some art work.  Willa and her mom haven’t lived one place very long, so Willa has learned to be very independent and self assured – at least it seemed that way at first. I loved how she had this really cool bike she rode and wasn’t into name brands.  Really made her a unique character.  The sad part – not barely a day into her new school and she flips completely.  She becomes very into dressing a certain way and following the crowd.  I’ll admit that disappointed me!  She listens to these girls say really mean things, but instead of speaking up she lets it go.  Now I get that for the first time in her life she feels part of “in” group, and she likes that, but I was hoping for more after how she seemed at first.  Now once she decides to do something the plot’s tension deepens.  Watching her steal things made me nervous!  And about that stealing – I got her rationale for it I really did, but it did kinda bother me.  It was suppose to be a light hearted story and it was but the stealing did bother me some! It also bothered me that she did it to buy these girls “nice” clothes so they could feel “special” like she did when she got them.  I didn’t like that logic especially because if she had paid attention she would’ve seen that these girls she was trying to help were actually pretty strong and self confident!
Now if that wasn’t enough for Willa she also has the issue of this cute boy Aidan and his mystery.  AND her mother acting weird!  Lots and lots going on with this girl.  In the end some things were wrapped up, but HUGE questions still remain.  If you don’t like cliff hangers – stay clear because this one has a dozy!
Now I did like it – it was fun and Willa was a great character.  I just had a few issues and maybe I just shouldn’t have taken it so seriously!
Final Thought: A fun twist on Robin Hood.
Best-stick-with you image: The first time she steals something.
Best for readers who: Take things as fun and not over analyze them
Best for ages: 12+
For the Guys? No not really.  Willa is fun, but I don’t think they’d be amused.


  1. Ok - this for sure sounds like a fun, quick read that I bet kids will really enjoy. However... the message does sound pretty messed up. Stealing is cool? Wear better clothes and people will like you more? I'm hoping there were some big "aha" moments in the end.

  2. I just reviewed this too and felt much the same way -- Willa's reasoning for stealing was off. Why weren't Mary and her friends insulted that she thought she could just "buy" their happiness? The whole situation made me a bit uncomfortable!