Sunday, January 25, 2015
Review: The Young Elites by Marie Lu
I am tired of being used, hurt, and cast aside.
Adelina Amouteru is a survivor of the blood fever. A decade ago, the deadly illness swept through her nation. Most of the infected perished, while many of the children who survived were left with strange markings. Adelina’s black hair turned silver, her lashes went pale, and now she has only a jagged scar where her left eye once was. Her cruel father believes she is a malfetto, an abomination, ruining their family’s good name and standing in the way of their fortune. But 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. He believes the Young Elites to be dangerous and vengeful, but it’s Teren who may possess the darkest secret of all.
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.
It is my turn to use. My turn to hurt
Okey dokey. I will start by saying that I pretty much loved Lu's Legend series. So I was super excited about the release of The Young Elites. I bought it and read it as soon as it came out. I am really sad to say that it was a bit of a disappointment.
I can't really put my finger on one exact thing that bothered me about the book. The pacing is slow, but I'm okay with that. I think my problem is more that because of the length of the book (a mere 355 pages including the epilogue 1.5 spaced 12 font), it did not really give me a chance to become invested in the story. I really wanted to like the characters. I did. But I just didn't know enough about any of them except for Adelina. And I just couldn't find it in myself to like her.
So here's my problem. I cry pretty much all the time when I read. The exception to that rule is George R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire saga, because I mean really. It's just obvious he's going to kill everyone so you shouldn't get too attached. I should have cried during this book. I know it. But I didn't care enough about the characters to. Oh yea, that was sad. Whatever.
All of my complaining aside, the concept of the story was truly intriguing. The base concept reminds me of Bracken's The Darkest Minds (disease strikes, the people that lived got special powers). But aside from that, they are absolutely nothing alike. The interactions with the queen and Teren distinctly made me think of A song of Ice and Fire (is Lu mayhaps a Game of Thrones fan??).
I did really like the fantasy world Lu painted: powers emerging from disease, courtesans in beautiful clothes, fighting over thrones, different kingdoms having different views over the Elites. The Young Elites has potential and I would like to see where Lu takes it. I won't be pre-ordering the next book, but I am sure to read it.
So what did I think?
I liked it. I definitely did not love it the way I thought I would. We'll see how the next book in the series goes. Maybe it can sway me to be more positive about it.