Title: The Young Elites (The Young Elites #1)
Author: Marie Lu
Publisher: Putnam Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: October 7, 2014
Summary (from Goodreads): I am tired of being used, hurt, and cast aside.
Adelina Amouteru is a survivor of the blood fever. A decade ago, the deadly illness swept through her nation. Most of the infected perished, while many of the children who survived were left with strange markings. Adelina’s black hair turned silver, her lashes went pale, and now she has only a jagged scar where her left eye once was. Her cruel father believes she is a malfetto, an abomination, ruining their family’s good name and standing in the way of their fortune. But some of the fever’s survivors are rumored to possess more than just scars—they are believed to have mysterious and powerful gifts, and though their identities remain secret, they have come to be called the Young Elites.
Teren Santoro works for the king. As Leader of the Inquisition Axis, it is his job to seek out the Young Elites, to destroy them before they destroy the nation. He believes the Young Elites to be dangerous and vengeful, but it’s Teren who may possess the darkest secret of all.
Enzo Valenciano is a member of the Dagger Society. This secret sect of Young Elites seeks out others like them before the Inquisition Axis can. But when the Daggers find Adelina, they discover someone with powers like they’ve never seen.
Adelina wants to believe Enzo is on her side, and that Teren is the true enemy. But the lives of these three will collide in unexpected ways, as each fights a very different and personal battle. But of one thing they are all certain: Adelina has abilities that shouldn’t belong in this world. A vengeful blackness in her heart. And a desire to destroy all who dare to cross her.
It is my turn to use. My turn to hurt.
The Young Elites is definitely up there with as one of my favourite reads of all-time! Having had this novel staring at me from my bookshelf for so long has been totally worth the wait. This book has an action-packed concept, a whole cast of flawed characters, and different perspectives that reveal so much about the events in the story.
The Young Elites has such an intriguing concept! After a disease spreads through the land, many are marked physically. They are called malfettos and are considered worthless by society. Some of the malfettos have these incredible powers, such as shooting fire from your hands. The people with powers are called the Young Elites and the queen of the land wants them dead. Basically, this book is filled with action as the Young Elites attempt to assassinate the king while staying concealed.
I really enjoyed how every malfetto/Elite in The Young Elites has a physical flaw of some sort. It makes this book realistic, since none of the characters are perfect. Unlike a lot of fantasy books out there, these characters embrace their scars and don’t really seem to mind them too much, except Adelina who lost her eye. This also proves that you don’t necessarily have to be beautiful to be a hero.
The different perspectives in The Young Elites really bring a lot of backstory to the book. It is told mainly from Adelina’s point of view, but Teren and Enzo also share a bit of their stories. I really enjoyed reading about Teren’s motives for killing off the Elites and why Enzo enjoys Adelina’s presence so much. I have always loved books that share every side to a story, so I am really glad that The Young Elites has this feature.
The Young Elites is an action-packed novel with plenty of flawed characters and many different perspectives. Fans of Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi would really enjoy The Young Elites, as both books contain characters with different abilities. I am kicking myself for not getting around to reading this book sooner, as I enjoyed it so much!