Overdrive by Dawn Ius

1:13 PM

Title: Overdrive
Author: Dawn Ius
Release Date: September 13, 2016
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Pages: 320
Source: ARC provided by Simon & Schuster Canada
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Overall: 3.5 STARS

Gone in Sixty Seconds meets Heist Society in this edgy novel about a crack team of teenage criminals on a mission to learn to trust, build a life, and steal a wish list of exotic cars.

Jules Parish has screwed up.

After three years of boosting cars, she got caught. She’s too good to get caught, but she let her (ex)-boyfriend talk her into a questionable job. And now she and her little sister, Emma, will be kicked out of their foster home, left to survive on the unforgiving streets of Las Vegas alone.


Eccentric, wealthy Roger Montgomery wants to open up his mansion to Jules and Emma. The only catch? Jules must steal seven of the rarest, most valuable muscle cars in the world…in seven weeks. Even worse, she’s forced to put her trust in three complete strangers to help her do it.

First there’s Chelsea, the gorgeous redhead with a sharp tongue and love for picking locks. Then there’s Mat, who hasn’t met a system he couldn’t hack. And finally there’s the impossibly sexy car thief Nick, whose bad attitude and mysterious past drive Jules crazy.

With nothing in common and everything to lose, can Jules and her amateur crew pull off what could be the biggest car heist in history? Or will things spin out of control faster than a Nevada dust devil?

Dawn Ius's Overdrive is a fast-paced, thrilling read that pulls you into a world of rare muscle cars and the heist of a lifetime. When the police catch Jules stealing a car, instead of being charged with theft, she's given a second chance. Roger Montgomery, a wealthy philanthropist, has a soft spot for teens and is willing to welcome both Jules and her younger sister, Emma, to his mansion. But it's not until Jules meets the three other teens staying in Roger's home that she realizes Roger has gathered them all together for a reason.

Seven weeks. That's how much time Jules and her new crew have to steal seven of the rarest, most coveted muscle cars in the world. If they fail, they'll be back on the harsh streets of Las Vegas... but if they succeed, they'll each have enough money to start fresh again. Chelsea is a gorgeous lock picker from a wealthy background, Mat is a skilled hacker who longs to learn about his family roots, and Nick is a sexy car thief Jules can't get out of her mind.

After turning the final pages of Overdrive, I'm still not really sure what to make of Roger. Sometimes he would seem like a true villain, manipulating Jules by threatening her little sister, and then he'd become a true benefactor, providing the crew with everything they needed to get the heists done and giving in easily to their stipulations. And then sometimes he'd be a creepy old man, especially when he'd admire his newly acquired cars. It was confusing. Was I supposed to pity him? Fear him? Be weirded out by him? Maybe it's all three.

It was inevitable Jules and Nick would be a couple, but I didn't expect it to be so obvious. Nick pulls a complete 180 in a heartbeat, acting like a jerk when Jules initially comes to the mansion and then being all sweet and supportive the rest of the book. It didn't feel like a natural progression, and because the book tried so hard to make Jules and Nick love interests, I didn't really feel too much excitement for them to be together.

Despite some of the faults I felt for the book, Overdrive was still very much a fun, addictive and heart racing read! Other than Ally Carter's Heist Society and Leigh Bardugo's Six of Crows, there really aren't too many YA heist novels that come to my mind, so Dawn Ius's Overdrive was a refreshing change of pace. I'm not a car aficionado like Jules and Nick, so some of the finer details went over my head, but I loved their passion and enthusiasm for old muscle cars.

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