Two more book reviews! I’ve finished a couple more books (and need to return a couple to the library before I can read them) but I’ve got a couple of reviews for you.
Spelled by Betsy Schow is a reimagining of the Wizard of Oz. I have to say, the main character was not particularly likable in this book. I spent of the time reading it wanting to throttle Dorthea or “Dot”. As she ran around the countryside with her friends (enemies, companions—it’s difficult to tell from the book), the main character is supposed to become more likeable… but Dorthea really doesn’t.
Still I kept reading and the book is rather interesting. I love the use of fairy tale terms for swear words. That was a cute gimmick. And the introduction of all the different characters (Beauty from Beauty and the Beast, Rapunzel, etc.) into the Oz world was awesome.
Overall, the book is a cute, light read, but you’ve got to be prepared to possibly not like the main character.
On the other hand The Young Elites by Marie Lu is a story about a group of “Elites”, children (young adults now) who have been changed by a blood fever so they have markings and special powers. Each of the survivors of the fever is “marked”—different color hair, varying eye colors, marks on their skin. Some of them have banded together to form the Daggers, a society that the Young Elites are called. They are fighting back against the royals who are inciting the society to kill the “malfettos”.
The story follows one malfetto, Adelina, as she escapes her family and joins the Young Elites. She learns her power, learns the group, and becomes conflicted when confronted by the leader of the Inquisitors. Adelina will do anything to save herself and her sister, Violetta.
Ms. Lu has created a world that could exist in reality. It’s well-defined and she weaves it easily into the story, not losing any of the characterization while she describes the background. The chapters are written in first and third person, depending on who’s “speaking”.
Although I didn’t expect to enjoy this one, I actually had a bit of trouble getting into the book; I did enjoy it once I got farther into it and eagerly finished it. I’m not sure I enjoyed it enough to read anymore in the series though.