The Young Elites by Marie LuThe Young Elites.

By Marie Lu. Read by Carla Corvo and Lannon Killea.

  1. 10 hr. Listening Library, CD.

First, let me start off by saying that I loved the Legend trilogy and I think it is better than this new one. This is the first book and it looks like it is set up to become a trilogy.

The epidemic blood fever has killed most of Adelina’s country’s population and has left many of the surviving children with marks of deformity that are hated and feared by the rest of the population. Adelina’s hair has turned silver and she has lost an eye. But some of these “malfettos,” the young elites, also have a special power. Adelina’s father has always pitted her against her normal younger sister to try to force Adelina’s power to come out. Adelina overhears that her father will sell off his damaged daughter as a mistress to a rich merchant in order to pay off his debts. She runs away that night with the help of her new found ability to create illusions and is rescued from the Inquisitors, the Queen’s men who hunt and kill malfettos, by the Dagger Society, a small group of young elites. They agree to train Adelina, but they will kill her if she cannot maintain control of her powers. There are two narrators that pivot perspectives mainly between Adelina and Teren Santoro with occasional other characters thrown in (which can be confusing). Corvo’s urgent pacing makes the suspenseful battles come alive and her morose, elongated musings accurately convey Adelina’s feelings of abandonment, contempt and jealousy. Listeners could do without Killea’s additional voice. Killea mainly narrates Teren and occasionally narrates the prince of the Dagger Society, Enzo Valenciano.  As political agendas emerge from the haze of magic and murder, Adelina’s alliances are challenged.