The Young Elites was my first book by Marie Lu, but I am ridiculously impressed. It is incredible.
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: October 7, 2014
355 pages, hardcover
Check out the synopsis on Goodreads.
Adelina Amouteru is a malfetto, one of the children who were marked after the blood fever swept through the land. But she isn’t just a regular malfetto, she’s a Young Elite, one of those marked that came out of the blood fever with not just markings, but powers too. And now she’s being hunted for them: by Teren Santoro, leader of the Inquisition Axis who may just have a secret or two hidden under his robes, and by Enzo Valenciano, leader of the secret sect of Young Elites called the Dagger Society who seeks out others like them. Adelina has powers no one has ever seen before.
This isn’t real. This is a nightmare. This isn’t a nightmare. This is real. – page 25
HOLY CRAP, you guys! This book is freaking incredible. I kept having to put it down and take a break because it was just that good. I’ll start by talking about my favorite part: the world building. Even 25 pages in, I already had a pretty clear picture of what everything looked like, and as the book went on, the little details became clearer. It wasn’t just the city around Adelina. We were given small details about the bordering countries, so that the entire world was being painted around us. I don’t know how she does it, but Marie Lu must have entire worlds in her mind and be able to pull out even the smallest of details to add to the story. Plus her world building isn’t done in an obvious way either (some authors are like, “Here. This is what everything looks like.”). Lu does it in a completely subtle and beautiful way in which you barely notice that you now know how the city, the sky, the streets, the people look. I am definitely not doing her writing justice, but I loved it.
Her eyes are very dark, so dark that sometimes they seem wholly empty. Like he could fall to his death in them. – page 57
That quote is not about Adelina, but I’m going to talk about her now. I really liked her. She’s strong and super stubborn (super stubborn), but I liked her. I enjoyed seeing her grow into herself and her power. Adelina’s darkness was so cool and even though it’s frightening, it’s hard not to root for her.
All of the character have a purpose in this book. No one is just there. It’d probably be pretty difficult to discuss them without giving away the twists and turns in this book, of which there are several. So I’ll just say that everyone is awesome.
The ending was exciting and had me on the edge of my seat. The epilogue was crazy awesome and I seriously cannot wait for book two. I need it. Now. Please?
The bottom line: I could probably talk about this book forever. I am so impressed with it. I checked it out from the library, but I will need my own copy so I can reread it a billion times. HIGHLY recommend this one.
Rating: 9.5 – I don’t think I’ve given a 9.5 before. Basically, it means THIS IS AWESOME.