Heist Society takes us into the high-stakes world of cons and heists, which is a subject that has been done to death in movies and literature, but this young adult novel puts a refreshing twist on the world of the caper. The protagonist is Katarina Bishop, a 15-year-old girl who was raised by her father to know everything there is to know about the big job, the scam, the con. However, she just wants to live a normal life, which is why she makes a move to run to boarding school. Unfortunately for Kat, fate steps in the way and drags her into the uncertain world of heists, as she is forced by a big shot in the criminal underworld to steal back a collection of priceless art that was taken from him – presuming that Kat’s thief father was the one responsible. With her father’s life on the line, she assembles a crack team of experts to pull off the job of a lifetime.
As with most genre fare of this type, the book speeds along at a nice clip, introducing us to plot elements as need be, and letting the proceedings go by with a wink and a slight bit of humor. The most refreshing twist on it is, being a kid, Kat is far from skilled at the heist game, making mistakes and letting her lack of experience get the better of her at times. This has the great effect of humanizing her and making her seem more grounded, despite the various skills and talents that are her heritage.
Carter’s writing is by no means florid, but it gets the job done, just like a regular piece of heist literature: quick, economical, and full of convenient twists that are no less entertaining to read as they are to predict. At the same time, the story is grounded in a great story about family, as Kat learns more about her father and her family’s history and learns to embrace her unique skill set. To sum it up, the adventures of Kat Bishop et al. are a great afternoon read, full of whimsy, adventure, and fun.