Saturday, March 10, 2012

Review: Pretty Crooked by Elisa Ludwig

Title: Pretty Crooked
Author: Elisa Ludwig
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Age Group: Young Adult
Category:  Contemporary
Release date: March 13th, 2012
Pages: 358 (ARC)
Rating: 5 out of 5
Source: Publisher

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 ultra-exclusive 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 pick pockets and break into lockers is as difficult as she’d thought it’d be. Delivering care packages to the scholarship girls, who are ostracized just for being from the “wrong” side of town, is way more fun than she’d expected.

The complication Willa didn’t expect, though, is Aidan Murphy, Valley Prep’s most notorious (and gorgeous) ace-degenerate. His mere existence is distracting Willa from what matters most to her-evening the social playing field between the have and have-nots. There’s no time for crushes and flirting with boys, especially conceited and obnoxious trust-funders like Aidan.

But when the cops start investigating the string of burglaries at Valley Prep and the Glitterati begin to seek revenge, could he wind up being the person that Willa trusts most?

Willa's living the good life when her mother moves her to Paradise Valley, Arizona and promises her that this move is the last.  Over the years she's lived in everything from a trailer to the backseat of their car, but this was all going to change when they suddenly come into enough money to buy a beautiful home with a pool.  When Willa falls in with the popular crowd, will things begin to get ugly?

Like most teenagers, it's easy to get pressured into something you normally wouldn't do.  I think in the back of her mind Willa knew she shouldn't go shopping with her new rich friends every weekend, especially since the money her mother has is limited.  Whenever she spent an absurd amount of money on one item of designer clothing, it made me cringe.  Other than poor judgement, I really liked Willa; loved her, even.  She had a good heart, which matters most, and her personality reminds me a bit of my own.

Some of the things Elisa wrote made me laugh out loud, such as her slight usage of catch phrases- even ones that I still constantly use- like "psych!" and "for realz?"  This book was just so totally me.  The story even depicted a realistic mother daughter relationship and unconditional love, which I admire because I'd been there.  Like Willa I've screwed up many times but my mom's always there for me.  (Okay, maybe I wasn't in as deep as Willa, but you know what I mean).

How do you get to the point where the lines between right and wrong blur?  After seeing a handful of people get hurt by online bullies, Willa decides to take matters into her own hands.  While her intentions were honorable, the outcome wasn't exactly what anyone would expect from a fifteen year old girl that holds a 3.8 GPA.

In the end, Pretty Crooked was creative and entertaining, sucking me in until I finished the last page, easily becoming one of my new favorites.


  1. Great review Chey! :)
    It was a great read, I agree. I didn't really like Willa's mum, to be honest, but other than that it was quite good! I'm definitely looking forward to the sequel!

    Books, Biscuits, and Tea

    1. True, she acted like a bitch the more the story went on, but there's still a lot we don't know about her. I liked her at the beginning and the end after she forgave Willa, mostly. :) Thanks for taking the time to comment!

  2. Isn't this a great read? I am still in the process of writing my review. I enjoyed reading what you think of Pretty Crooked.
    -FABR Steph@FiveAlarmBookReviews

  3. I loved this book as well and loved your review! I didn't even realize it was a series until I finished, but I'm so glad it is.