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.
DISCLAIMER: THERE MAY BE MINOR SPOILERS. BE WARNED.
I enjoyed this book, but it took me some time to get to that stage. The story had a lot of potential, it was clear. But despite Adelina’s character being dark and gritty, and a part of me wanted to know more about her, there was still something about her that wasn’t gelling with me. She’s a malfetto yet she behaved so… Weirdly. You’d think, even at 16, she’d have more common sense but apparently not. I found myself practically screaming at her idiocy in this book and it was only the last few chapters where I could catch my breath and relax. But man, she was not an easy person to deal with.
The basis of this story is that a virus caused a lot of kids to get special powers. But because they get certain markings, they’re shunned by regular folk for not being normal and/or pretty. Adelina is one of those, since she has a nasty scar on her face. She’s nearly killed by the Inquisitors, but saved by the Daggers and from there learns to harness her powers and soon realises just how dangerous she really is. It’s quite… frightening, really. No, disturbing, is the better word. She has the ability to cast illusions on people, make them see things. She can disguise people and make them invisible if needed. It’s impressive. But before long things turn ugly and she’s losing control.
Enzo is the Prince who became a Malfetto and therefore shunned by his family. His sister became Queen. I quite liked Enzo, even from the beginning. He had a typical mystery about him, dark and brooding but not in an irritating way. In some ways he reminded me of the Darkling from the Grisha trilogy. Same sort of personality and I mean… He’s a prince. Not that that’s the reason. Certain things happen that really broke my heart, and I’m seriously hoping book 2 corrects these issues because…I just…NO!
The romance between Enzo and Adelina was purrrrrfectly sweet and sort of sexy, in a deadly weapon kind of way. It helped balance out the crazy, for sure, and gave me hope.
All the while through this book I was just like ‘Adelina needs to stop being stupid. Before I throw this book.’ and believe me, I came close a few times.
There are a few moments where she’s threatened by the lead Inquisitor, Teren. Who, ugh, I despise! I mean, there are some bad guys that I can tolerate, but he was just irritating to the max. Such a hypocrite, too.
I can understand if you’re threatened, you’d be scared and not know who to turn to, but Adelina had new friends now. She had the Daggers. And all the whole she acted like she couldn’t tell anyone. I was fuming. If she told them, they could help her. She kept on complaining if they found out, they’d kill her. But I was like ‘yeah but lying to them and then them finding out, they really will kill you.’ and I figured if she went to them for help, they’d help her through it. But ugh. This girl drove me nuts.
I’m glad things sort of seemed to even out at the end, even though the events that brought her to that stage were devastating. The epilogue brings hope, and wonder, and dammit…I told myself I wasn’t going to read the Rose Society because Adelina irritated me too much, but maybe I will just to see how things pan out. ugh. Decisions.
This is one of those books where despite what I’ve said in this review, I still rate it pretty high. The fact that I didn’t put it down half way and stuck it out and then was more intrigued and it broke my heart and set it on fire and let the ashes fall through the stupid fingers of revenge…yeah anyway, I recommend this to anyone that has a steel heart and has patience to battle through because it gets SO good and…I should go now before I start crying.