My rating: 5 of 5 stars
★ ★ ★ ★ ★ – Near Perfect, easily one of my all-time favorites.
No one wants you to be yourself. They want you to be the version of yourself that they like.
“The Young Elites” by Marie Lu is a dark-ish fantasy, and the first in a trilogy.
Adelina is a malfetto—a survivor of a blood fever that changed her hair to silver, and left her with a scar where her left eye used to be. She lives with her sister and a cruel father who believes that she is nothing more than an abomination left to ruin the family name and fortune.
One night, something dark erupts from inside Adelina causing a chain of events that lands her in the care of the Dagger Society—a group of malfettos with extraordinary abilities called The Young Elites.
I might just be squeamish, but I found this book to be dark. And not in the sense that there’s a lot of blood and gore (although there’s no lack either), but in the sense that it touches something dark inside the reader. At least it did for me.
Adelina is not the typical heroine. Starting from her scarred looks, to her bad choices and complex personality, she is a unique character, that I grew to root for in many ways.
The writing is on point, and I enjoyed experiencing the conflicting emotions of rooting for “the villain” for once.
Recommended for: I don’t think I’ve read many stories like this before, so I can’t give an “If you liked that, then you’ll like this”. But, if you enjoy imperfect characters in your fantasy stories that makes you think about the parallels to our world—then this book might be a good match for you.