Review + Villain Squad to Rule the World: The Young Elites by Marie Lu

Review + Villain Squad to Rule the World: The Young Elites by Marie Lu
The Young Elites
The Young Elites #1
by Marie Lu

Genres: Dark, Fantasy, Young Adult
Publication date: October 7th, 2014
by G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers

Format: Paperback


Amazon | Book Depository

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.

I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review.

The Young Elites is a hyped book. Hype is scary. This book is scary! What isn’t scary? IDK. But let’s get back to the book.

When I first heard about The Young Elites, I was excited like so many other people. I loved the sound of it and I wanted to know more about this group of people who possessed special powers. But like with many other new releases, this book got lost somewhere on my to be read shelf and I didn’t really think about it until the promos for The Rose Society began.

I am ridiculously glad I read this book. It was a terrifyingly awesome read and might have even been better than Legend.

Adelina is unlike any other female lead I’ve met before. Anti-heroines are not that common (from what I’ve seen) and usually what seems to happen is that they might start off as bad and then slowly morph into a good character. This was not the case for Adelina. Adelina starts of as someone who is essentially good but we get glimpses of the darkness hidden inside her. Little by little though, that darkness begins to bloom. The further we get into the book, the more Adelina embraces that darkness and it’s SCARY to watch. Like, YELLING AT THE BOOK scary.

Adelina’s downspiral is a result of many things but primarily the abuse she suffered growing up. Not just from her father but from everyone around her. Her need for revenge seems like a believable reaction to all the abuse she has suffered. A little bit of love and friendship isn’t going to fix her. In fact, who knows what can. For most of her life, she was neglected, told she was evil and was also physically abused. It’s heartbreaking to hear what she has gone through in her rather short life time. It’s heartbreaking to see her give into that darkness and it’s even more heartbreaking to wonder whether or not she will ever get back from it. SO, the point of all my rambling is that I basically love Adelina (even though she is probably going to go over to the dark side) because she is such a complex character. She is well written, well developed, SHE IS EVERYTHING.

Fangirling over Adelina aside, there are also a lot of other fantastic side characters in the book. Some of them actually get their own POVs once in a while and it was interesting being inside their heads. I do wish that we spent a little more time with some of the other Young Elites because I wanted to get to know them more.

The world building within the book is also fantastic. Marie Lu brought this world to life for me. I loved the details we got. I loved what we learned about the fever that gave powers to some of the malfetto. I loved the way the tensions were developed between the people of Kenettra. This world is set up so well AND WE GET A MAP. All I can hope for is that in the future novels we’ll get to see some of the other lands in this world.

The plot is well paced and the book was a surprisingly quick read. There are times when you will yell at the book though, especially towards the end (for a variety of reasons.) There are so many things that scare me about reading The Rose Society and I worry for my sanity.

One thing I will say is that this book did have some very frustrating moments. Most of them were a direct result of Adelina’s downspiral. The Young Elites may have been a quick read for me but it was not easy to read. I had to step aside for little moments to gather myself and then dive back in.

This is a fantastically written book with complex characters and a world that will draw you right in. After all, who doesn’t like a good book about superheroes (or people who claim to be heroes and might not be…)

Rating Report
Overall: 4.2


Now that I have raved about this book, I would like to introduce you to my alter ego YOUR WORST NIGHTMARE

I am the leader of the Mindfuckers supervillain squad. Do I make a good supervillain? Maybe. I mean, I am angry at the world and have a general sense of constantly being wronged. MAYBE I MUST TAKE OVER THE WORLD AND MAKE EVERYONE DO MY BIDDING TO BE WHOLE AGAIN. *cue evil laughter*


Supervillain ID


At the moment, there are 4 members of the Mindfuckers supervillain squad

Tina Belcher1. Tina Belcher from Bob’s Burgers. Tina was invited to join the squad solely because she is my spirit animal. She doesn’t actually do a lot of evil things but we love her insight. Even if it involves too many butts and horses.

2. Aidan from Illuminae. If you’ve read Illuminae, you will know that Aidan would be very beneficial on a supervillain squad that wants to take over the world. Aidan has a way of gathering data and manipulating people that is beneficial to the team. SometimPresident Snowes though, the fact that he isn’t human can be problematic.

3. President Snow from The Hunger Games.  President Snow is a very obvious choice for a supervillain squad. First, he be rocking that beard. Also his experience as a tyrannical and cruel president helps. The fact that he is dead can sometimes be an issue but *shrugs*

4. Okiku from The Girl From the Well. This scary ghost is a fantastic addition to the team because her abilities to remain unseen help us get all sorts of information we wouldn’t be able to otherwise. Sometimes her uncontrollable rage can be an issue, but she is so fun to hang out with!

This super exclusive squad is opening its arms to new recruits, so tell us why you think you should be on our super special squad.

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Rashika is a mysterious creature who likes to hide in the shadows. It's impossible to get to know her but if you must know, she is a huge bookworm. She also happens to have a huge sweet tooth so you can always lure her over the dark side by offering her something sweet (or bribing her with books).


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  1. AenteeAentee says

    How have I not read this book? Adelina sounds so perfectly flawed as a protagonist, and the blog tour for this series has been so awesome! I would choose Pres Snow for my villain squad as well, the fact that he smells like roses and blood alone is enough to make me squeamish.

  2. says

    Hah! Your Worst Nightmare! Totally badass, lol! I still have yet to read this book, and I totally agree. Hyped books are either a hit or miss for me, just like how a lot of people loved Red Queen but it just wasn’t for me. Glad to know this book is a hit for you, hopefully it would be the same for me. Plus, anti-heroines are a new thing for me too. Awesome review!
    Blessie (Mischievous Reads) recently posted…Purple Is The New Black + Giveaway!My Profile

  3. says

    I’ve had The Young Elites for a couple of months now, and I STILL HAVEN’T READ IT! I wanted to dive into TYE before I started her Legend Trilogy, just so I can get a feel for her writing without having to commit to three books I may hate. I literally haven’t heard many negative things about ANY of Marie Lu’s titles, so this is the push I need to finally pick this book up. Oh and girl I love your villain squad! Aidan was creepy af at first, but then he turned into this brilliant . . . THING, so YASSS to you including him!
    Tika recently posted…The Weight Of Feathers Review + Blog Tour — A Rare GemMy Profile

  4. says

    This is FABULOUS. Snow would be the best, because seriously, he made it so long before anyone even tried to fight him! AIDAN.. well, we DO know the problems associated with him. I mean… spoilers, so I won’t say but things could get ugly, fast. Tina Belcher seems fun, I approve of her addition to the squad. And I need to read The Girl From the Well!

    Glad you loved The Young Elites too! I feel like I need a quick reread or something before The Rose Society. Meh, maybe Recaptains has it ;) Love your squad and review :D
    Shannon @ It Starts At Midnight recently posted…This Week At Midnight (80)My Profile

  5. says

    ADELINA. EVERYTHING ABOUT HER. it sounds so great and perfectly written and now you’re compelling me to read this book. Gahh, why. WHYY. My TBR grows by the second, and this book sounds like just the right amount of villainy and darkness.

    I haven’t exactly seen Bob’s Burgers, but from what I’ve seen of her on Tumblr, she seems to be my kind of person. (Despite the butts and horses of course) I love your list, Rashika!
    Nirvana @ Quenching the Quill recently posted…I’m lost inside this endless haze of lifeMy Profile