Books, Teen Reviews

Read + Review — How to Lead a Life of Crime by Kirsten Miller

How to lead a life of crimeFlick is a kid with a special talent. He is a master pickpocket, able to notice wallets from far away and steal it with a quick bump and flick. That is why he named himself Flick, because he could rob any person with a quick wrist flick. His father, one of America’s richest people, abused him and hated him. Flick’s younger brother, Jude, tried to protect Flick from his dad’s beatings. One day, Flick’s father killed Jude. Flick decided that he wanted revenge and was recruited by Lucian Mandel, the head of one of the best schools, Mandel Academy. It turns out that the Mandel Academy is just a school full of criminals ranging from pickpockets like Flick to hardcore serial killers. Flick enrolled in classes at Mandel Academy and found that he excelled at everything and rose to the top to become the Dux. But then Mandel recruits a new competitor that is very special to Flick. Mandel tells them that only one would graduate from the Academy. The not-so fittest kids in the academy get “expelled.”

I thought that the book was very interesting. I loved Flick mainly because he was so smooth and easy-going. I did not like Gwendolyn because she was such a Dux wanna-be. I loved the deep, dark mood of the story. When I first saw the cover of the book, I thought that it was going to be a very humorous book, but it turned out that I was completely wrong. Survival of the fittest was one of the book’s themes, and the book included many examples of what would happen if you were not one of the fittest. One thing that I did not like about the book was the abundance of cuss words in it. Almost every chapter there would be an “f—” or another cuss word. I would recommend this book to teens (because some of the content is not for younger kids) that loves suspense. Overall, this book was a great book. It was very exciting.

One memorable thing about the book was how dark and sinister it was. I thought that this book could pass for an adult novel.

Reviewed by James, Grade 7, Gayton Library

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