ARC Review: Payback by Kristen Simmons

Thank you so much to Tor Teen and Netgalley for letting me read Payback by Kristen Simmons early! I love the Vale Hall books so much, so I was so excited to see what happened with the gang in this last book in the trilogy, and man y’all, this for sure did not disappoint!

Payback 5/5 Stars

Summary from Goodreads:

The unpredictable truth will be revealed in Payback, the stunning conclusion to Kristen Simmons’ Edgar-nominated thriller series that started with The Deceivers…

Brynn Hilder has conned a lot of people. From the spoiled rich kids of Sikawa City to her mom’s loser ex-boyfriend, from a motorcycle gang to a senator’s son. If there was money to be gained, or a secret to uncover, she figured out how to get it done. And thanks to Vale Hall and its director, Dr. David Odin, she’s found a family of hustlers just like her.

Together, Brynn and her friends have overcome doubt, deceit, and betrayal to unearth the truth–a truth even a group of professional scammers couldn’t have predicted.

And now they must tackle the biggest con artist of them all: the man who brought them all together.

Payback was so intense and so good and OMG I love these character so much!!! I love Brynn and I love how much she’s grown from book one and how by the end of Payback, she’s really become the person she wants to be. There were some slip-ups in this book and she lost her way/forgot to trust her people, but in the end, she grew from it. I loved all of the twists that Kristen Simmons threw in- there were some I saw coming, but so many that I had no idea were on their way! In general, I love the idea of Vale Hall and not only teaching students the necessary core subjects, but having them learn all about the art of the con in order to move forward in the world. David Odin was so slimy in all of the books, so having Brynn and her friends work to take him down was so compelling and made me keep wanting to read. There was never a point in time in this book where I wanted to stop reading or put down the book- it was all so good and so perfectly paced! If you haven’t read Payback (or any of the Vale Hall books really), you should pick it up ASAP!

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