Tuesday 22 November 2011

Review: The Pledge by Kimberly Derting

Title: The Pledge
Author: Kimberly Derting
Publisher: McElderry Books
Date Published: Nov 15, 2011

In the violent country of Ludania, the classes are strictly divided by the language they speak. The smallest transgression, like looking a member of a higher class in the eye while they are speaking their native tongue, results in immediate execution. Seventeen-year-old Charlaina has always been able to understand the languages of all classes, and she's spent her life trying to hide her secret. The only place she can really be free is the drug-fueled underground clubs where people go to shake off the oppressive rules of the world they live in. It's there that she meets a beautiful and mysterious boy named Max who speaks a language she's never heard before . . . and her secret is almost exposed.

Charlie is intensely attracted to Max, even though she can't be sure where his real loyalties lie. As the emergency drills give way to real crisis and the violence escalates, it becomes clear that Charlie is the key to something much bigger: her country's only chance for freedom from the terrible power of a deadly regime

Review: The Pledge is a book that I've been wanting to get my hands on for quite some time; the synopsis stole my attention and I knew the novel would be something that would interest me. The concept of language is very complex and the idea of social rankings in a strict society with a vicious queen is tense ... so combining both language and social status made for an interesting novel that had twists and turns throughout. 
I absolutely loved this book!! There was a sense of historical fiction mixed with fantasy and paranormal that made The Pledge a fun and sometimes nerve-racking read!

This dystopian novel caught my attention from the very beginning- I enjoy reading dystopian novels as they have seem to become a popular genre in YA lately! The idea that one person or group has such high control over an entire entity is astonishing- the rules and regulations as to what these people have to abide by always interests me, and sometimes even intimidating. The author, Kimberly Derting describes a society that is ran by the Queen. She is top on the hierarchy- those who are considered royal speak one language, those in a working class below them speak another language, and so on and so forth. Every "class" has a different language only they can understand... and there is a high price to pay for anyone who breaks the rules that the Royals set. These rules include talking, comprehending, or understanding a language other then your own.

The queen is in search for an heir as she is ready to pass on.. this can't be just "some" girl, she needs to be special and fit into the role to take over Ludania. There is one girl fit for the role of queen and only a few know who she is before she even realizes it.

On to the characters... 
Charlie (Charlaina) has a rare gift- but one she cannot flaunt. In fact, she has to be very careful that no one ever find outs that she can understand the languages for every social class. The consequences of this slip could mean life or death. I enjoyed reading about Charlie- besides the fact she has to pretend everyday that she doesn't have a gift that could lead to her death, she's a normal teenage girl. Her love for her family and the strength she has mentally and psychically to take on all that she does is impeccable! 

I enjoyed reading about Maximillion-- hot hot hot! It was mesmerizing to read about him, and at some areas I even got chills because his character was very mysterious.. but then again that's what makes girls fall for guys right? Max knows Charlies secret and he has a secret of his own. One that could ruin both of them.. or possibly save them ;-) ((being vague I know.. but I refuse to give spoilers... I want everyone to enjoy this book as much as I did.. shock, surprise, and all!)

Gripping. Exciting. Thrilling are only a few words that I would use to describe this book... especially the ending!! Towards the beginning of the book, Kimberly describes the society of Ludania in which Charlie lives and in very great detail. The rules and the way their societies run under the Queen are described and taken into account- all of these descriptions are needed, but not much of the plot is addressed yet. Towards the middle to the end everything begins to unravel and this is when I could not get enough of The Pledge.. and Max! LOL. I even started doubting what the complete outcome of this book would be I was so flustered (in a good way!) by the fast paced, jaw dropping events!

I really enjoyed this book and I would highly recommend it for anyone who likes Dystopian novels.. or just looking for a great book to read!


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