Date Published: November 15, 2011
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Number of Pages: 323
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry
I really liked the concept of this world, the way the government works and how the population is divided…kind of takes me back to another century. I took a chance on this book because of the author, I had read her “Body Finder” series and just loved the authors writing and there was no change in this book, the writing was just as lovely and fun to read. I just loved how the world was built and all the conflicts and resolutions that were strategically placed, there were only a few minor issues I had with this book but overall it was an interesting and fun book to read.
I liked the rules and boundaries of this world, I liked that though it had some similarities to other books it also had an awesome concept involving language. I found it pretty creative involving the different classes having to speak a certain language; very clever. I really enjoyed the concept behind everything and I found that the plot didn’t seem to really drag anywhere. The pace was fast and slow at times depending upon the time and situation. I really found this an easy and fast book to read, the plot was really good, the conflict was evenly placed and this book hit all the checkpoints along a traditional plot. And as far as the world itself, I found that the author was able to pull an average location and place it into a magical world, it was fun to see how paranormal was placed within this world…it wasn’t too much and it allowed the reader to really experience a more realistic situation. And as far as the ending? I really loved how sinister and dark it was…this book in my opinion could have been a stand-alone book if not for the last few pages…it added more depth and room for the world to expand without it becoming thin at the edges. And I wouldn’t even really consider the end to be a cliffhanger so you won’t have worry about the suspense of what could happen next…instead you’ll be more of wondering what happens next. So overall I did enjoy the plot of this book and though it had some backing of most YA novels it had qualities that were unique to itself. This was a really cool concept to me.
There’s the typical romance in this book, it really isn’t all that different so if you’re tired of the romance and you’re trying to stray from books with it in it then this book isn’t for you. I did kind of like it in the end, it was sweet and fun to read; maybe I can tolerate romance if it’s something good to read…but in the end this is nothing new and didn’t really add to the depth to this book.
I found that it was easy to connect with the main protagonist. She had her flaws but I didn’t really find her annoying or making some stupid choices. I also liked her fire; she was a really strong character when it came to protecting the ones she loves…it was really cool to see her in each situation when it involved someone she cared about…she really reminded me of myself and how I might react in similar situations. As far as the other characters they were well placed and created and I really had no problem connecting with them and seeing their purpose in the book. So overall the characters really added more depth and fun to the book; without them this book would really lack an important element…these characters were able to relieve a high tension situation and be serious when needed…really good character development.
Transformation of the Character:
The characters didn’t really change throughout the book, they mainly just had to dig within themselves and use what traits they already had. The main character especially seemed to stay the same, she really was strong throughout the entire book and like I mentioned she didn’t really transform though I think there’s room for transformation and the end might have hinted at the possibility, I guess I’ll just have to wait till the second book to see if she does or not. As for all other characters there may have been some transformations but they just really didn’t catch my eye; there was a lot going on. So overall this aspect didn’t affect the overall story/book.
Really enjoyed this aspect of the book (it seems I do in most books). The description was really good when it came to describing the scenery of the world; it was more dark and sinister and the author chose to use symbolic images to help empathize the strong emotions in this story. This author did a great job on creating really detailed scenes; I could really picture the scents and emotions within each frame of the story. As for the amount of description I didn’t think there was too much or too little, the amount of detail in each of the scenes helped better explain the story that the dialogue could not. And as far as the dialogue goes, there wasn’t too much of it either and it seemed realistic and true to each of the characters. So overall I very much enjoyed this aspect of the story, the scenery was beautifully described and perfected.
This was written in first person and in four different POV’s. Though with the POV’s it was mainly in Charlie’s POV and then a big chunk in the Queens and Max’s…the POV’s kind of worked well with the story, it was able to broaden the world just a little bit more so that the reader could see exactly what was going on. As far as the author’s writing it was easy and fun to read, I didn’t really stumble with the grammar. So overall I enjoyed the style and found that it fit just right with this book’s world.
Quote of the book:
“He leaned in then and kissed me again, sweet and soft and tender, silencing my arguments and stealing my breath, making me wonder how one simple gesture could be so tragically lovely.”
In the violent country of Ludania, the classes are strictly divided by the language they speak. The smallest transgression, like looking a member of a higher class in the eye while they are speaking their native tongue, results in immediate execution. Seventeen-year-old Charlaina has always been able to understand the languages of all classes, and she's spent her life trying to hide her secret. The only place she can really be free is the drug-fueled underground clubs where people go to shake off the oppressive rules of the world they live in. It's there that she meets a beautiful and mysterious boy named Max who speaks a language she's never heard before . . . and her secret is almost exposed.
Charlie is intensely attracted to Max, even though she can't be sure where his real loyalties lie. As the emergency drills give way to real crisis and the violence escalates, it becomes clear that Charlie is the key to something much bigger: her country's only chance for freedom from the terrible power of a deadly regime.
I would recommend this to young adult and paranormal readers. This was a book to read, it had such depth and creativity. I really enjoyed the experience I got from it and cannot wait to continue this series. I loved how the book begun with the Queen, it really drew me in and allowed me to be submerged in this world. I enjoyed the author’s writing and can’t wait to see what other stories she has in store for her readers. But one thing is for sure this book was quick and fun to read.