(The Conspiracy of Us #1)
Published: January 13th 2015
Synopsis (from the book):
Sixteen-year-old 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 both boys are hiding secrets of their own, and when the clues expose stunning new information, Avery realizes the conspiracy could destroy her life–if it doesn’t destroy the world first.
Publisher: Putnam Juvenile
Genre(s): Young-adult mystery, thriller
Page Count: 336
I love a good mystery, and add conspiracy theories, prophecies, and plot twists, and the book is golden.
Avery West is a girl living in Minnesota with her mother, who moved around a lot because of her mother’s job. As a result, Avery cuts all ties with people, and doesn’t allow herself to even try to make friends. This ultimately leads to her being a bit of a loner with only her mom as someone close to her. When the new kid at her school Jack and a stranger named Stellan shows up at prom to tell her she’s in danger, and she has to go to her dad’s family, she jumps at the chance, letting him whisk her away to Paris. What originally started off as an innocent meet the family visit suddenly turned into being in the middle of a secret society (The circle of 12, 12 important families that apparently control everything like media, politics, etc.), with dangerous enemies, conspiracies, and an ancient prophecy that promises power. After an attempt on her life, Avery and Jack realize that she’s much more important to the fate of the Circle than they thought.
Some things I really enjoyed about this book were:
-The writing style. Fun, but still kinda serious. That can be a hard thing to do, and I feel that Maggie Hall nailed it!
-Action scenes. One of the many things that kept me interested in this book was the action scenes. By action scenes, I don’t only mean that characters drew their guns and fought a war or something. The book was fast-paced, and I love how from the beginning of the book, while it was more slow compared the rest of the story, still got me immediately guessing. We got to try to figure out clues that not only we’re, but the characters too. We got to go along for a wild ride, from Minnesota, to Paris, to Istanbul, and while it would’ve been nice had the characters explored a bit, the action and the scenes in these places make up for it.
-Avery West. Some people migh find her annoying, but personally I’m okay with her. Avery was an interesting protagonist, and it was refreshing to see her aware of her own absurdity in some situations.
“It felt so trivial to be sad about a boy right now.”
Sure, she was naive at some times and made stupid choices, but being suddenly thrown into the middle of a longtime secret-society war can do that to people. She was strong, and what she does is a reminder that she’s not perfect. As for her appearance, she has dark brown hair, and purple eyes (which is part of what makes her special). Some people might find the ‘purple eyes means special’ annoying, however I was always fascinated by purple eyes, and the fact that it made her part of the prophecy and stuff was interesting.
I know from the synopsis of the book that it seems like there’s a love triangle, but honestly, while Avery comments on the attractiveness of Stellan, the main romance of the story does not involve a love triangle. Rather, it’s a slow, burning type of romance that makes you feel all warm and fuzzy.
Jack, (Avery’s main love interest) is a Keeper (bodyguard) of one of the families in The Circle, in charge of Avery, and also forbidden from getting involved with her. Although forbidden romance seems overused, I really liked that aspect it gave to the story (however I don’t really understand how it’s wrong, for a Keeper to be in a relationship with a Circle member…it’s doesn’t really affect anyone else…). There were some very swoon-worthy scenes in the book between Jack and Avery which just put a silly grin on your face and makes you all mushy. Lignering looks, stolen touches, you know the deal.
-Love Triangle to-be
There will probably be a love triangle in the second book (planned to be called Map of Fates) which might annoy some readers, but personally I’m okay with it, and mostly indifferent to who she chooses. Not that I didn’t like the love interests, just that I’m not leaning toward one guy only. I honestly can just see Avery with both of them and it doesn’t really bother me of who she chooses. Of course, for now the love triangle part seems kind of forced, and obvious as to who she’s going to choose, but who knows? That might change, and I’ll be looking forward to it, whatever ‘it’ is.
-Rewriting history (kind of)/Plot
The plot, I have to say is kind of far-stretched, but I was able to ignore that in light of the exciting action and mystery in the book. For those readers out there who dislike changing history, this book might have a few issues with you. Some of the ideas may be slightly laughable if you know your history, but personally I didn’t really think about it much, because hey. It’s fiction, AKA made-up. So long the story’s going in an interesting direction, nothing’s wrong with changing up history. For me, anyway.
So, in short, there were little to no flaws in the book, and those small flaws didn’t ruin my reading experience. The Conspiracy of Us is a mystery thriller, and it didn’t disappoint! If you’re into stories with conspiracy plots. secret societies, mystery, and ancient prophecies, you’ll definitely find something to enjoy in this book and I definitely recommend it.
Now shoo! Go get it to eat!