Book Review: The Young Elites

Book review: The young Elites Marie Lu

While most characters in a fantasy obtain their magic by learning it or simply by being born with it, Marie Lu came up with a wonderfully unique way for her characters to get their powers. They have to survive a blood fever that leaves them marked in some way. They have a purple splotch on their skin, locks of blue color hair, or unmatching eyes.

Not only did the fever leave Adelina with silver hair, but it took one of her eyes as well.

The society she is in sees her as an abomination, not because of her missing eye, but because she is a malfetto, an abomination cursed by the gods. And some, the Elites, rumored to have supernatural power.

I love the twist that those with magic powers are feared and hunted down rather than revered. It creates a perfect backdrop for Adelina’s story to unfold. The story of an unloved girl, who thinks she has found acceptance and love in a group of people similar to herself, only to be betrayed.

This isn’t the story of a hero being made, but a villain being created.

Adelina truly tries to please her new friends, hoping to gain the acceptance and affection she’s longed for since childhood, but because of circumstances mostly beyond her control, she is labeled a traitor and loses the chance she had at belonging. This leads her to believe that there is no love or friendship for her.

What makes this story so powerful is that each one of us can empathize with Adelina. We’ve all felt unloved, been an outcast, or been abused. And maybe sometimes fantasized at getting revenge on those who have done us wrong.

This is the tale of a girl who has lost so much, she is forced to take from others. Who has had pain inflicted on her so often that she can’t help but inflict it on other. Of a broken girl who becomes a villain.

 

Stars: five out of five.

 

 

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19 thoughts on “Book Review: The Young Elites

  1. Sounds like such an interesting way of imagining magic and how it is seen in society! But wow, so dark, too. I see on Amazon that there’s a second book in the series. Does this one come to a satisfying conclusion, or is it one of those where you’re left hanging unless you read the rest of the books?

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    1. It is on the dark side, but not a distasteful amount. I felt like it came to a satisfying conclusion. You could see where the story could continue, but it tied things up nicely.
      There’s actually three books. I’ve read the second. Can’t wait to read the third!

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      1. I have been reading so many series lately, and still have so many from years past that I need to finish (where I read the first book but the others weren’t out yet, and then I never got back to it). Plus all those series I absolutely loved and want to re-read. But that’s just SO MANY BOOKS, so I have to prioritize. That makes me gun-shy about reading a book when I know it’s a series…

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      2. I know what you mean! I have several series that I haven’t finished because the last book isn’t out yet. And I’m one of those people that has to reread the first books before reading the one that just came out because I feel like the story flow has been interrupted if I don’t. 😛 So yeah, that makes for a lot of books. 😀

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      3. Yep, that’s exactly my problem. Just yesterday I realized that, having put off reading books 1 and 2 until I got books 3 and 4… that 4 is not the last one. Argh! But I’ve already started book 3! Luckily I already sat down and took some good notes on what happened in the first two books, so I’ll do that again for 3 and 4 and hopefully can just reread those (instead of the whole books) when the last book comes out. And it had *better* be the last book… (makes fierce face)

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      4. Ugh…I hate when that happens. I try to look up how many books are in a series and if they are all out before reading them, but sometimes even the author doesn’t expect to write another one. 😛

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      5. I don’t even remember why I thought the series would end with #4, or if I even thought about it. What I remember is feeling guilty that I hadn’t bought my friend’s books before now, and that I had to catch up.

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      6. It is starting to add up, I must say. Especially problematic given my ongoing goal to actually *read* the books in my to-read bookshelf before I buy more. So far I’m reading more than ever each year I try this, but I’m also *buying* more than ever, and falling farther behind each year!

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      7. I can understand that. I already have over 100 books on my to-read list. If I also knew a bunch of published authors and had to read their books as well, I’d be swimming in unread books. 😀

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