Heist Society by Ally Carter
Blurb from http://www.chapters.indigo.ca/
When Katarina Bishop was three, her parents took her to the Louvre...to case it. For her seventh birthday, Katarina and her Uncle Eddie traveled to Austria...to steal the crown jewels. When Kat turned fifteen, she planned a con of her own--scamming her way into the best boarding school in the country, determined to leave the family business behind. Unfortunately, leaving "the life" for a normal life proves harder than she'd expected.
Soon, Kat's friend and former co-conspirator, Hale, appears out of nowhere to bring her back into the world she tried so hard to escape. But he has good reason: a powerful mobster's art collection has been stolen, and he wants it returned. Only a master thief could have pulled this job, and Kat's father isn't just onthe suspect list, he isthe list. Caught between Interpol and a far more deadly enemy, Kat's dad needs her help.
For Kat there is only one solution: track down the paintings and steal them back. So what if it's a spectacularly impossible job? She's got two weeks, a teenage crew, and hopefully just enough talent to pull off the biggest heist in her family's (very crooked) history--and, with any luck, steal her life back along the way.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book, especially as I've read it after wading through a large number of deep, dark, paranormal teen books. 'Heist Society' was such a breath of fresh air (apologies for the cliche). It has a fantastic main character, is fast-paced and action packed and has one very intriguing young man in it. It also takes the reader on a journey across Europe and introduces some facts about art history which are slowly being forgotten.
I had the opportunity to meet Ally at a signing the other day and she is absolutely lovely. She is working hard on 'Heist 2' and I can't wait for her to finish.
I would recommend 'Heist Society' to everybody who is looking for something different with a lot of fun thrown in. Ally also writes the Gallagher Girls, an all-girls school that trains spies and is run by an ex-CIA agent (what more could you ask for;). Her website is here.