Monday, 24 November 2014

Letter From A Reader || The Young Elites by Marie Lu

Today's review is a little different because I have decided to write a letter to The Young Elites rather than doing a regular review. Huge thank-you's and hugs to the lovely Rita for letting me borrow her "Letter From A Reader" feature - its one of my favourite things to read on her blog and I'm so glad she didn't mind me borrowing it! Immediately upon finishing The Young Elites I knew I wanted to write a letter to it, I don't know why but something in my head was already forming the letter and the words I would say. So without further ado, here it is!

Book Title: The Young Elites (The Young Elites #1)
Author: Marie Lu
Publisher: Putnam, October 7th, 2014
Source: Bought!
Format: Hardback, 355 pages
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | The Book Depository
I am tired of being used, hurt, and cast aside. Adelina Amourteru 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... (-Goodreads)
Dear The Young Elites,

Having just finished you moments ago I am left with a profound sense of disbelief. You were so much more than I imagined you to be, even whilst I was reading you I still had doubts - which you quickly chased away within a few turns of pages. With your pages now filling my memory my love of reading grows a little more. You brought so much more to my idea of magic, without ever calling itself magic - in a city that echo's renaissance Italy you placed me there without hesitation, throwing sights and senses at me until I was almost one with your character, Adelina.

I don't know if it was the familiarity I shared with Adelina for being so much like myself, or just the way you wove her around me, but needless to say I admired her - every flaw she presented was something that increased my want to defend her, like a sister. In no way is she presented as a hero, she is the embodied journey to being labeled a villain. At the same time as being such a complex, and layered character, Adelina also had a simplicity to her - she was struggling with the very real darkness inside and you didn't shy away from making that something that warped our character. In you there is no black and white, right and wrong is all in shades of grey.

The romance wasn't something to be hidden away, you kept everything very real even in such a fantastical world, and I liked that. Maybe it was a bit too predictable, but I would be lying if I said I didn't want to see Adelina and Enzo together. I think Enzo may have been a bit too recycled as a character, but at least you gave him an original spin and weren't afraid to do the hard thing. Was it hard? It was certainly a surprising turn in the story, one which I can't praise enough.

Not only did you give me amazing scenes, and striking characters like Rafael who I adored to pieces, but your pages really came alive, the emotions felt like they were sitting there on the page to be picked up and handled. I can't say much for the meaning of life, or anything as profound as that, but books like you, The Young Elites, you show us what it means to be human. Although you might be fictional, and as far as I know I can't create illusions, you've still made yourself so accurately relevant - replace the fantasy elements with things from our lives and this could easily have become an urban novel to be acclaimed for its no nonsense approach to darker matters.

I'm not very good at writing letters, or talking, but I've done my best to say everything I can to you because you were truly a wonderful read. You may have been missing that extra factor that I so long for, but without a doubt you still blew my preconceptions out of the water and created a new world which I can't wait to dive back into with the sequel next year. Thank-you for giving me a character who I treasure not only because she's real and strong and true, but because I think people like me can learn a lot from a character like Adelina - I hope to see her grow in the future.

Love, Fi xx
Rating = 4 Bookish Birds

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