Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers (October 7, 2014)
Hardcover: 355 pages
Series: The Young Elites #1
Add on: Goodreads
Rating: 4 of 5 stars
Adelina Amouteru is a survivor of the blood fever. Most of the infected perished, while many of the children who survived were left with strange markings. Some of the fever’s survivors are rumored to possess more than just scars—they are believed to have mysterious and powerful gifts, and though their identities remain secret, they have come to be called the Young Elites. Teren Santoro works for the king. As Leader of the Inquisition Axis, it is his job to seek out the Young Elites, to destroy them before they destroy the nation. Enzo Valenciano is a member of the Dagger Society. This secret sect of Young Elites seeks out others like them before the Inquisition Axis can. But when the Daggers find Adelina, they discover someone with powers like they’ve never seen.
Adelina wants to believe Enzo is on her side, and that Teren is the true enemy. But the lives of these three will collide in unexpected ways, as each fights a very different and personal battle. But of one thing they are all certain: Adelina has abilities that shouldn’t belong in this world. A vengeful blackness in her heart. And a desire to destroy all who dare to cross her.
There was something in the acknowledgment at the end of the book that caught me. I don’t normally read acknowledgements, rushing from one book to the next, but I’m glad I did this time.
“Sometimes, all it takes to see the right path is a flash of brilliant insight from someone else. I realized the problem was that I didn’t want to tell a hero’s journey; I wanted to tell a villain’s.”
And it’s true. Even though you can see Adelina trying to fit in where she can, to do something good to keep her place where she thinks she should be, this girl is a villain. She displays this unfathomable amount of fear and darkness inside her. Even as she slips further and further down this path, you can’t help but want to root for her and wish for her redemption and happiness.
This book sets up an amazingly complex world with a great set of characters. We’re introduced to so many of them, however, that makes it hard for each character to be as developed as you might like. But, fear not. This is only the first book after all, and who knows what the future will bring!
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