Title: Tangled Webs
Author: Lee Bross
Release Date: 6/23/15
Reviewed by: Haley
Tangled Webs is a joyful ride in a world full of secrets, deceit, and a little bit of hope.
Arista (killer name, by the way) is a sixteen-year-old girl living a double life as Lady A, the well-known and well-hated blackmailer of London. Lady A’s life is full of dresses and parties and confidence. Arista’s life is one of poverty, fear, and abuse. Struggling to find a way to break free of the binds of her criminal life, Arista grapples with questions of who she can trust, and how she can get out. She’s daring, kind, honest, and level-headed. I adored her narration, which showed her internal struggle to discern who she was and what her morals were in a world where her desire to be good was an anomaly.
The story revolves around her new job working under Wild, the competitor of her former employer Bones, who offers Arista compensation for her work, which is something Bones never did. Wild places her in the home of the Sinclair family, where she see Grae – the same boy she saw before at a party and developed a crush on. As Arista becomes closer to the Sinclairs, she uncovers her true feelings towards her job – that she hates it and wants out. Her path to finding her out and paving her future drives the story, and keeps you on the edge of your seat.
I had a couple of issues with the story, but they weren’t anything too big. Mainly, it felt a bit predictable. Once you were reading, you saw the final choices Arista would make, and who she would end up with. Her romance with Grae felt rushed, but I still loved them together. They respected each other, and I always enjoy that in a YA story, especially one that’s historical fiction. Although the middle of the book was engaging and definitely spurred me to continue reading, the ending was just a little too perfect.
Despite this, I enjoyed Tangled Webs and its focus on poverty and hope. I adored the historical backdrop of London in the early 1700s, of the rough streets and the impoverished. You see abuse, love, and hope all through the eyes of an honest and charismatic heroine who I would love to see more of!