|"Everyone has darkness inside|
them, however hidden."
Author: Marie Lu
First Published: 2014
Series: The Young Elites #1
Genre: YA, Fantasy, Sci-Fi
Available As: Hardcover, paperback, ebook
My Rating: 9.5/10
One word: phenomenal. This book blew me away, like every one of Marie Lu's books. Her writing is fresh and doesn't disappoint, even though she may seem like a typical YA author.
So, let's take a look. There's a girl, Adelina. She's the protagonist of our story, but she is definitely not the most perfect person there is. A malfetto, a disgrace to humanity. Being hunted by the Inquisition and forced to spy on the Daggers against her will - this is when we really see Adelina's personality. She will do anything to protect her little sister, Violetta, no matter how much her instincts scream at her for betraying the Daggers. At first, she's desperate to be accepted into the elite community, trying her hardest to please Enzo, and even towards the end, during her last conversation with Raffaele, we can all see she's desperate for acceptance from those similar to her. However, she is also very different from all of them. She's not like our average heroine. She fights against the darkness that has latched to her heart due to her dark past, but at the same time, she embraces it with passion, making her a powerful character.
I'd also like to point out that there is Adelina and two boys, Teren and Enzo. But there is no love triangle here, and I respect that. Not every YA Dystopian book needs romance as its main theme. There is some mixed feelings between Adelina and Enzo, but nothing too detailed.
Enzo and Teren aren't all that different either. They're both boys, different but the same. Both have been forced to grow up too fast in a cruel world. However, they both chose different paths. Enzo decided to lead the Young Elites to usurp the king and snatch the throne, whereas Teren decided to lead the Inquisition to destroy all Young Elites and malfettos, but at the same time usurp the king and snatch the throne for the queen. They have different motives, but the same endgame in mind.
Then there's my absolute favourite character, Raffaele. He's a beautiful boy, second in command to Enzo (most likely). Being a consort, his life in luxurious but depressing. There is a darker past behind Raffaele, and although he seems gentle and understanding most of the time, I think there's something behind the pretty and seductive mask he always puts on. I hope we see more of him in the future books, and how the Dagger's paths will clash with Adelina's once more.
My Chosen Quote: