Sins & Needles (The Artists Trilogy, #1) by Karina Halle

16029994Book Synopsis: [goodreads]
Pages 331 | Published 25th January 2013 by Metal Blonde Books
Ellie Watt is used to starting over. The daughter of a grifting team, Ellie spent her childhood being used as a pawn in her parents’ latest scam. Now she’s much older, wiser and ready to give her con artist life a rest. But returning to the dry desert town of Palm Valley, California means one more temptation than she bargained for – Camden McQueen. Once known as the high school weirdo, Camden is bigger and badder than the boy he used to be and a talented tattoo artist with his own thriving business. Ellie’s counting on Camden still being in love with her but what she’s not counting on is how easily unrequited love can turn into obsession over time. When Camden discovers Ellie’s plan to con him, he makes her a deal she doesn’t dare refuse, but her freedom comes with a price and it’s one that takes both Ellie and Camden down a dangerous road.

Book Review: 4.5 Stars

I think I have decided upon a new career path. From this point onwards I will become a con artist! Yes I know what you are all thinking that ‘damn seriously Meg? You do realise that when shit hits the fan you’ll probably end up dead’ – well to that I say ‘as long as I know Camden McQueen I.don’” Why? Well thats simple, its all because…


You always here about the thrill of pulling a fast one over on some dead beat who probably had it coming in the first place, but you never (or at least I haven’t) understood the necessity a con artist actually feels in completing a job. Ellie grew up grifting, and after a job turned sour she ended up scarred…literally. I guess if its all you’ve ever known, and you get a thrill from it, why wouldn’t you continue? I adored Ellie and her wit. As a reader you were really able to connect with her – understanding her motives behind her actions.

“And I was thinking two things: one, I couldn’t afford to befriend anyone, let alone someone I wouldn’t mind seeing naked, and two, how much cash could I take from him before I hated myself?”

Karina Halle | Sins & Needles

It was written rather beautifully, despite minor spelling errors. The book switches between the present, that is written in first person, and the past that is written in third. As an avid reader I always want to know more about the characters I have grown to love. And yet I sometimes find that reading a prequel doesn’t quench this desire. Sins & Needles mixes the past and present so magnificently that the reader fully comprehends why Ellie is acting the way she is (or a particular reference) in the present, because of something that happened in the past.

tumblr_m72bpzefvX1rwq9jho1_500Speaking of the past – if I knew someone like Camden McQueen in high school I would hold onto him and not let go. Kids can be so cruel, but just his whole character and why he is they way he is makes my heart race and ache at the same time. And who doesn’t love a guy that sees beauty in tragedy, has tattoos, and plays a mean guitar.

Karina Halle is a rather fantastic story teller. With motifs and themes that run and connect through the course of the novel, I can’t help but give her a round of applause. Her portrayal of grifting and drug lords is amazing to read. I must say however that the ending was a bit slow. It felt like I was imagining a Quentin Tarantino movie, where it could end at a number of different scenes yet kept dragging on. Regardless though, you’ll be hooked and won’t want to put down this beautiful tragic love affair.




One thought on “Sins & Needles (The Artists Trilogy, #1) by Karina Halle

  1. Pingback: Bookish Senior Superlatives | MegaMad 4 books

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