Initial reaction: One of the best books I've read in its genre for the way it had me hooked into the storyline and for the level of the writing. I loved it.
Dude, this book was intense, so intense I read it twice this year (and just finished up the re-read technically in order to refresh my memory for events). It's taken me a while to try to put my reactions to words because there are times when I know exactly what to say about a book I enjoyed, and others where the words are much more difficult to come by.
"Sins and Needles" is a mixed conjuring of action, sexy times, humor, suspense, and a bit of the thrill of the chase. I was very surprised by it and pretty much steamrolled my way through the book. The story revolves around a con-artist named Ellie Watt who comes from a family of thieves. At the beginning of this novel, she's returning home to her Uncle for a temporary place to stay, presumably on the run from her previous life and endeavors after a con too many gone wrong.
Back in a familiar place, she doesn't expect to stay long, but she meets Camden, a boy she knew from high school. The two click rather well, but gradually the reader realizes that their relationship isn't such a bouquet of roses. Their chemistry is palpable, steamy yet contentious, but just as Camden wants to use Ellie for his own ends, the two go on the run as the person chasing Ellie manages to catch up with her.
And then all heck breaks loose.
This book kept me up into the wee hours of the morning reading through in spaces. I thought it did a great job with the established tensions, characters, and scenario overall. Actually, if I'm handing out awards for the best writing in New Adult that I've personally read, this would be among the top contenders. Halle does a great job of getting into Ellie's head, and even if the character tends to have her moments of failure and fault, she manages to be likable still. And there's a good dose of humor to boot as well.
I'm definitely curious to see what the next book offers in the series given the note that it ends on. And it's a new favorite for me in terms of how the narrative pulled me along for the rather wild ride.
Overall score: 4/5 stars