Book Review: The Conspiracy of Us by Maggie Hall

Written by: Maggie Hall
Release Date: January 13, 2015
Pages: 336, Hardback
Series: The Conspiracy of Us, #1
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Book

A fast-paced international escapade, laced with adrenaline, glamour, and romance–perfect for fans of Ally Carter

Avery West’s newfound family can shut down Prada when they want to shop in peace, and can just as easily order a bombing when they want to start a war. Part of a powerful and dangerous secret society called the Circle, they believe Avery is the key to an ancient prophecy. Some want to use her as a pawn. Some want her dead.

To unravel the mystery putting her life in danger, Avery must follow a trail of clues from the monuments of Paris to the back alleys of Istanbul with two boys who work for the Circle—beautiful, volatile Stellan and mysterious, magnetic Jack. But as the clues expose a stunning conspiracy that might plunge the world into World War 3, she discovers that both boys are hiding secrets of their own. Now she will have to choose not only between freedom and family–but between the boy who might help her save the world, and the one she’s falling in love with.

LetsTalk

I heard about this book from a friend of mine and when I saw the library had a copy on order I decided to snag it. I didn’t really know much of, well, anything about it. The cover looked cool and I trust my friend dearly. I didn’t even remember what the jacket copy was until I had the copy in my hands. So I can’t start this out by saying I loved the concept and was waiting for it, but I can say that if I had seen the concept I would’ve been far more excited. I love stories that talk about secret societies and powerful people.

Not only does this book have all of those things, but you can also throw in ancient clues and mysteries, along with prophecies dictating the future. Sounds exciting, am I right? So I dove into this book really expecting a great thrill ride. I got one, that’s for sure, there were several times I couldn’t believe I was as far along in the book as I was when a lot more had happened than I realized. The story just ran insanely fast like that. Which is probably my favorite thing for any book. I just love when the book takes on it’s own life, and it drags the reader along. Include the fact that we’re running for our lives from men with guns who want the answers to the prophecy even as we’re trying to decode it ourselves? Oh yeah.

Didn'tWork

This is where I have to mention that I almost DNF’d this book. Had I not been in a car, and had I not been getting texts of: “No, keep going, don’t worry,” I probably would have put this book down. For about the first 60-70 pages, Avery, our main character, annoyed me. Truthfully she didn’t just annoy me, she drove me insane. She made choices without explaining why, despite the fact that the book was written in first person, and basically bolted. She ran away without any mention of her mother, and she had to know her mother was freaking out, she had to know, and yet there was no inner monologue of her even thinking of her mother. She had nothing but a blatant disregard for the consequences of her actions.

Now I came to find out those actions were part of Avery’s character arc. She does come to realize she screwed up; she learns from the mistakes. She realizes that she needs to start thinking better and acting better. But for those 60 pages, she annoyed me to the point that I almost put this book down. It felt like I was slogging through this annoying MC’s perspective just to get somewhere with the story.

DidWork

Once Avery’s actions were explained, and once we, as the reader, were able to finally see why she chose what she did, the book really took off. Avery began to react to things rationally. She had panicked moments where she questioned what she’d done (including the first 60 pages where she realizes she screwed up badly.), she grew up, and she started to learn about this new world she’d been thrown into. She reacted to seeing the painted on exterior of this new world pulled away and the raw gritty inside come to light, she had moments where she felt like she was going into shock. But she pushed through, she grew through them, she changed.

I really liked the plot of this book. It felt like an adventure. Which is what it was, of course. The story set us up slowly, leaving us, and Avery, in the dark for a while, but as pieces came together, I found myself wanting to flip to the end more and more just to see if my hunches were right, if the prophecy would be true or not. There were subtle things that Hall wrote throughout the novel that I felt really came to light, and I’m quite sure there were more that won’t come to light just yet. At times it felt like I was watching a movie rather than reading a book and I loved the thrill ride.

Sure there were some predictable moments, you knew certain things were going to happen at some point or another. But even with the predictable moments the story was able to still pull you past them and on with the story. On to the next moment where things got even worse.

Pickup

If you love stories like this, and know that you can get through those first few chapters, then yes, pick it up. I really can’t wait for the rest of the series and to see where that cliffhanger takes us next.

Sondra

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