Book Review: The Young Elites

theyoungelitesThe Young Elites by Marie Lu

http://www.marielu.org/

Fantasy

4.5/5 Stars


Background Info:

“I am Adelina Amouteru. I belong to no one. On this night I swear to you that I will rise above everything you’ve ever taught me. I will become a force that this world has never known. I will come into such power that none will dare hurt me again.

When a deadly illness called the blood fever swept through the nation thousands died. None of the survivors were adults, and the few kids that did survive were left with markings to forever remind them of the horrific event. Adelina Amouteru is one of those survivors. Her once raven-black hair is now as pale as the moon, and a rough scar now stays where her left eye once was. Her father is cruel to her, as all those who survived the blood fever with markings are considered malfettos, which brings down the family’s good name and fortune. But markings and death aren’t the only things that the blood fever left behind, as it is believed that some survivors are said to possess mysterious gifts and powers. Nobody knows exactly who these kids are, but they have built quite a reputation for themselves and the people have made a name for them. The Young Elites.

Teren Santoro is not the man that everyone thinks he is. His job as the Lead Inquisitor is to find and destroy all malfettos, before they destroy the entire nation.  Easier said than done, especially when those who you are hunting down have powers beyond explanation.

If not for Enzo Valenciano, Teren would’ve succeeded in killing many more malfettos. Enzo is a member of the Dagger Society, a secret sect of Young Elites that search and save others like them. But what he finds isn’t at all what he was expecting.

What will happen when their paths all collide? Find out in The Young Elites. 😀


Thoughts on Book:

Ah, the good ol’ Marie Lu, author of the well-known Legend trilogy. She never ceases to amaze me. While this book was extremely different from her previous books, it was still a great book. Her writing style is so unique and the direction that the plot went in surprised me very much, which is something that I love about Marie Lu. One of the reasons I, and many others, have loved this book and even the Legend trilogy is how unpredictable they are. You never know what’s going to happen next. Her ability to write fight scenes is also something I like about her. Especially during the end of the book I loved reading the fast-paced action scenes. It was also nice how she didn’t focus on romance too much (there was still enough for my liking), which gave more time to focus on the main plot. There were, however, two things that hindered me from giving it 5 stars:

#1– The world building was not the best during the first half of the novel. When I read a book I want to feel like I am there. I want to be able to visualize the characters and their surroundings, and unfortunately that didn’t happen while I read the first half of this book.

#2 I was a little confused at some parts, as Marie Lu switched from first to third person quite often during the book. It wasn’t a big enough problem to change my thoughts that much, but it did take me a while to get used to, as well as lots of re-reading to make sure that I fully understood what was happening.


Thoughts on Characters:

The characters in this book were so unique that it really improved the book as a whole. Adelina’s story and personality was so captivating as you never knew what she was going to do. She could be smiling one second and then suddenly turn into godzilla or something like that. I loved the fact that she had so much darkness and hatred inside of her from her early life (especially towards her father) and she really used that to her advantage. It was interesting to see her try to figure out who she really was inside and who she strived to be. Thinking about it now, there are lots of differences between Enzo and Adelina. Enzo acts tough but on the inside he is still healing from the loss of Daphne, while Adelina is very strong on the inside, but it is hard for her to let it out at first. Please tell me that I’m not the only one who immediately thought of Zuko from Avatar: The Last Airbender after reading about Enzo. They’re personalities are so similar as well. That ending was just brutal and I still can’t believe that Marie Lu would do that. (WHYYYYYYY) As for my favorite character, I would be split between Enzo and Raffaele. Though Enzo’s teaching methods were not very… safe, it was so nice to see the wall that he built around his heart break down a little everytime he was with Adelina, and Raffaele was just so sweet and so strong for learning how to accept his life and who he was. There were some characters that I really disliked though. The main two being Violetta and Adelina’s father. Adelina’s father was so cruel and disgusting that I was leaping in joy when he got what he deserved (This no spoiler thing is really hard ughhhhh). The way he tricked and baited Adelina was just not okay, but don’t get me started on Violetta. I didn’t like her from the beginning, but my spite for her seemed to increase throughout the novel. Let’s just say she might have some secrets of her own. Overall the characters really made this book a great one, and in all of the YA books that I’ve read I’ve never read about a protagonist or side characters like these ones.


Related Books:

I have never read it, but many people say it is very similar to The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken.


Favorite Quote:

“Don’t cry. You are stronger than that.”


Final Remarks:

A book that has too many twists and turns to count, and characters that have more to them than what meets the eye. A very good fantasy book for those action-lovers out there!

Book Review: From A Distant Star

24036086From a Distant Star  by Karen McQuestion

Science Fiction

4/5 Stars


Background Info:

“Sometimes love needs help from a distant star”

It has been a year since Lucas Walker was diagnosed with cancer, and during that time almost everyone has lost hope. His doctors, his friends, and even his parents are prepared for the worst. Everyone except his girlfriend Emma. She stays overnight for days by his side, talking to his unresponsive body. So when Lucas miraculously wakes up one day after months in a coma, Emma has to resist the urge to tell everyone, “I told you so!”. But Emma soon learns that this Lucas is not the Lucas that she is in love with. When Emma finds a strange object on the Walkers property the same day as Lucas’ recovery she begins to put the pieces together, but getting her Lucas back might be harder then she thought.

My Thoughts:

Okay, I have to be honest, I had never heard of this book before, but it was one of those days when you go to the library and find absolutely nothing on your TBR list so you just scan the shelves looking for something interesting. Thankfully I decided to give this book a chance instead of going home empty handed. It turned out to be a really great book, and I only gave it 4 stars because of two reasons:

#1– I felt like the language and writing style was more middle-aged level than it was young adult. It didn’t affect the plot too much, but I definitely felt like a little more detail at some parts would’ve been nice.

#2– It was a little too predictable. I don’t know about you, but I enjoy a few twists and turns here and there (as long as they don’t involve my favorite characters dying), and this novel didn’t have many of those. I don’t want to complain too much though, because though the ending was one of those “happily ever after” endings it was still very heart-warming and it just left you with this happy feeling that left you smiling to yourself in your room like an idiot. 🙂

Related Books:

This book definitely gave off strong vibes of The Host by Marissa Meyer.

Favorite Character:

Oh, this is a hard one but I think I’m going to have to go with Scout. I might be a slight sucker for those extremely innocent and gentle guys (*cough* Prince Maxon *cough*). He also really opened my eyes when he asked Emma questions about why some humans were so judgmental and cruel. Those questions really made me stop and wonder where we are heading as a civilization. It was also so amazing to see him learn feelings along the way such as love and fun, feelings that he had never experienced before. Scout was really a very sweet and caring character.

Cover Art:

I really liked the cover of the book with the space background and all, but it was slightly misleading. It kind of seemed like Scout and Emma would get together from the cover image. It might just be me, but I was slightly disappointed when they didn’t. 😦

Favorite Quote:

“Love trumps logic every time”

Final Remarks:

A feel-good book for people of all ages, especially those sci-fi lovers out there!

Book Review: Gone

Gone- Michael Grant

Science Fiction/Supernatural Fiction/Dystopian

5/5 Stars


In Perdido Beach,California everything is fine. Kids are walking to school, parents are driving to work. That’s when it happens. everyone over the age of 14 is gone, leaving no trace of where or how they left. They just disapgonepear, leaving nothing but panicked children. Kids immediately try to escape, but they soon find that they are trapped inside of a dome, one that electrifies those who dare touch it. Many kids are excited that there are no parents left to boss them around, but that excitement ends abruptly when kids start to develop superpowers. But wait there’s more! When kids turn 15 they poof out. gone forever. With no parents left to make the rules, the older kids must step up and take on the responsibility of protecting all the kids. Easier said than done. When a large group of kids volunteers Sam Temple to be their leader he is stunned. Before this event he was convinced that nobody even knew he existed other than his best friend Quinn Gaither, especially not Astrid Ellison, the girl he has secretly been crushing on. While reading this book  follow Sam Temple as he struggles to lead scared kids and the various other obstacles that life decides to throw at him.


Overall I gave this book 5 stars. This book is definitely one of my favorites. Not only is it written with vivid details, but it also has new twists at every turn. Since the kids in this book were about the same age as I was, I could connect to most of their feelings and reactions.  This is one of those books that leaves you wondering what you would do if you were in a similar situation. I know it sounds cheesy (really, people getting superpowers. pshhhh) but once you start reading you won’t be able to stop. I feel like this is a modern version of Lord of the flies, and definitely one that is easier for young adults to understand.  This book is great for all sci-fi and dystopian lovers.During the time you spend reading this book you really far in love with the characters, well except for those super evil and nasty ones that you want to rip the guts out of. And just when you thought it couldn’t get any better, there are actually 5 other books following this one in the series so you’ll get to know the characters even more. I won’t give out any spoilers, but just know that anything can happen when no parents are watching…