Monday, November 22

Review: Aces Up by Lauren Barnholdt

Title: Aces Up
By: Lauren Barnholdt
Reading Level: Yound Adult Fiction
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
(August 10th, 2010)
My Copy: Review Copy offered by the Publisher
BookWhisperer Rating:

Seventeen-year-old high school senior Shannon Card needs money. And lots of it. She’s been admitted to Wellesley, but her dad just lost his job, and somehow she has to come up with a year of tuition herself. But Shannon’s dream of making big bucks waitressing at the local casino, the Collosio, disappears faster than a gambler’s lucky streak. Her boss is a tyrant, her coworker is nuts, and her chances of balancing a tray full of drinks while wearing high-heeled shoes are slim to none. Worse, time is running out, and Shannon hasn’t made even half the money she’d hoped.
When Shannon receives a mysterious invitation to join Aces Up, a secret network of highly talented college poker players, at first she thinks No way. She has enough to worry about: keeping her job, winning the coveted math scholarship at school, and tutoring her secret crush, Max. But when Shannon musters up the nerve to kiss Max and he doesn’t react at all, the allure of Aces Up and its sexy eighteen-year-old leader, Cole, is suddenly too powerful to ignore.
Soon Shannon’s caught up in a web of lies and deceit that makes worrying about tuition money or a high school crush seem like kid stuff. Still, when the money’s this good, is the fear of getting caught reason enough to fold?

Lauren Barnholdt is another awesome author to be on the lookout for. I am reminded of my favorite author Simone Elkeles when reading this authors works.  Aces Up is an incredibly unique story about a young girl that gets mixed up in the world of Gambling. The book description explains this story about a world of Gambling, but when I began reading the novel I found so much more. Shannon Card is desperate to find money for her future. After her Father lost his job the family is forced to downsize, and Shannon knows that the money promised for her Early admission to Wellesley is no longer available. Her decision to obtain a fake id and birth certificate so that she can work at the local casino is the direct result of this family tragedy. Thus begins a downward spiral of lies that soon find Shannon in a world of trouble. Shannon is a honest and hard working student, but once caught in the grasp of easy money life perspectives begin to change. It is awful to see this girl in such a predicament. One that had it not been for the family crisis, and seeing her dreams flushed down the drain I don't know that she ever world have agreed to venture into this dangerous world of gambles and lies. This was a unique experience in the world of gambling that I was unfamiliar. Even with lack of knowledge this was a easy to read novel. Aces Up teaches the lesson that earned money is far better than the repercussions of easy money.


Nina said...

Sounds like a great writer and story. I like the other book that is written by her and that came out this year. I got that one on my tbr list. Going to try that one first and then maybe this one. Great review.

Anonymous said...

okay just tell me this! does shannon and cole ever hook up in the book cuz iv read a lil and i could tell he waz kinda flirtin but i didnt know if that waz just to get her to join or if they actually do... cmon plzzzz just tell me this 1 lil thing?!