Review: The Young Elites by Marie Lu

Title: The Young Elites
Author: Marie Lu
Genre: YA Fantasy
Publisher: Penguin UK
Published: February 5th 2015
Page Number: 368
Rating: 5/5


I am tired of being used, hurt, and cast aside.

Adelina Amouteru is a survivor of the blood fever, marked by a jagged scar where her left eye once was. Branded as a Malfetto - an abomination - she is cast out from all she has ever known and loved.

Adelina finds sanctuary with other Malfettos and discovers that the disease has left her with more than just a scar - she has a mysterious and powerful gift.

She is a Young Elite.

But Adelina's ability is stronger than any Young Elite before her. And unless she can control the vengeful darkness growing in her heart Adelina could be a danger to them all.

It is my turn to use. My turn to hurt.

This book could have easily been a dislike for me, since I wasn't a big fan of Marie Lu's debut novel, Legend. However, The Young Elites ended up becoming not only my second favourite book of the year, but also my all time favourite Fantasy novel.

I've always mentioned that I'm not the biggest fans of protagonists who are hero's. And one of the reasons that attracted me to The Young Elites was the fact that Adelina isn't a protagonist, but an antagonist. She's a good character who's powers come from darkness.

Marie Lu's writing has always captured my attention. It's not like any other authors I've read, it's beautiful and poetic, completely engaging and enthralling; something you can't take your eyes off even for a split second. And if I am being honest, I weren't one hundred percent sure it was going to work for The Young Elites, but it completely did. The time setting mixed with the characters and the city they lived in was enhanced by Marie's writing. I wasn't reading a book, I was reading a book and watching a movie at the exact same time.

The characters were fresh and exciting, completely compelling. Adelina was dark, twisted and creepy, but there was also this side to her that wanted everyone to like her. She wanted to be properly liked for the first time by people who didn't see her scar as something to fear.

“No one wants you to be yourself. They want you to be the version of yourself that they like.”
The book also followed two other characters that played a huge part in the novel: Raffaele and Teren. Teren is the hypocritical enemy, who everyone wants dead. He's vicious and will do anything to end the lives of all Malfetto's. And honestly? I LOVED his character. I think he's a little misunderstood, but I know his actions come from his own hatred. He doesn't like who he is and wants to be released from all his sins. And I understood that.
Raffaele was a character that entranced you and made you fall in love. Literally. His special power allowed him to capture the hearts of those around them, made them fall in love with him. And I'm pretty sure it doesn't end at fictional characters, because I fell for his charm and wit like everyone else.
There were so many plot twists that came unexpectedly and each and every one had me silent. I hadn't predicted them like I do when reading most novels and that proves just how great Marie Lu is. She knows how to twist and turn the story and weaves it into something completely different, new; something completely brilliant. And that ending had me on my knees begging for a copy of The Rose Society (Book 2), because there is know way I can't not know what happens. It's a must for me!


  1. Thank you for the review, i have often wondered whether to venture into reading this. I have not read any Marie Lu at all, So might start with this one :)

    1. It is SO good. I never stay up reading but I honestly couldn't go to sleep until I had finished the book.