Book Review: Carve the Mark by Veronica Roth

carve-the-mark

Carve the Mark

Release date: January 17th 2017

4 stars

On a planet where violence and vengeance rule, in a galaxy where some are favored by fate, everyone develops a currentgift, a unique power meant to shape the future. While most benefit from their currentgifts, Akos and Cyra do not—their gifts make them vulnerable to others’ control. Can they reclaim their gifts, their fates, and their lives, and reset the balance of power in this world?
Cyra is the sister of the brutal tyrant who rules the Shotet people. Cyra’s currentgift gives her pain and power—something her brother exploits, using her to torture his enemies. But Cyra is much more than just a blade in her brother’s hand: she is resilient, quick on her feet, and smarter than he knows.
Akos is from the peace-loving nation of Thuvhe, and his loyalty to his family is limitless. Though protected by his unusual currentgift, once Akos and his brother are captured by enemy Shotet soldiers, Akos is desperate to get his brother out alive—no matter what the cost. When Akos is thrust into Cyra’s world, the enmity between their countries and families seems insurmountable. They must decide to help each other to survive—or to destroy one another.

I was both excited and a little hesitant about receiving this book to review. I loved Divergent, still enjoyed Insurgent, and I still go back-and-forth on how I feel about Allegiant. I was hopeful that I would enjoy this one as much or more than I did Divergent, especially considering its sci-fi genre and intriguing premise.

I really liked that it started with a shared POV this time. It felt like Cyra got more chapters but we got a balanced aspect from two different cultures, the Shotet and the Thuvhe, and their paths merged due to their fates. I liked them both as characters and thought they worked well separately as they grew and together as they became allies. They each had prejudices toward the others’ people, assumptions made from stories they were told, and they had to learn that not everything they perceived was true. The arc of them growing and trusting each other was just as important as the rebellion arc. I also thought it was interesting to see the usual roles switched where Cyra, the female lead, was the seasoned and deadly fighter, and Akros, the male lead, was a more gentle hero who had to learn to fight.

I thought the book had a bit of an X-Men in space vibe to it. Most people had something called a currentgift, some ability that made them unique and some abilities seemed more useful than others. Certain people also had a fate, a path the Oracle foresaw but the one sentence prediction was vague. The world-building was slow and I felt that I understood more about the way the system and the worlds worked as I read on. There wasn’t a massive information dump or history lesson at the beginning, it all started to unfold throughout the plot and I can assume will keep unfolding in the next book.

The book had so much of what I enjoy in a story: characters that were easy to like, villains that were easy to hate, character growth, great character dynamics, twists, complicated issues. It did its job in making me very excited for the next book.

*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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3 Comments

Filed under book-related, books, reviews, talking books, ya books

3 responses to “Book Review: Carve the Mark by Veronica Roth

  1. Pingback: Weekly Reading Recap | Overflowing Bookshelves

  2. Pingback: December Wrap-Up/January TBR | Overflowing Bookshelves

  3. Pingback: A look at the Carve the Mark sneak peaks: prose, photos and artwork

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