Tuesday, June 18, 2013

The Testing (The Testing, #1)

Okay, so you know those books that you read where they catch you right from the get-go and before you know it you’re thinking, “What? The end already?”  Joelle Charbonneau creates that exactly in her new YA series, The Testing (The Testing, #1).  A lot of the elements of the testing are remnant of some of the great YA books that adorn our shelves.  Think, Divergent meets Hunger Games but without the love triangle bit.

Summary (Courtesy of Goodreads):

Keep your friends close and your enemies closer. Isn’t that what they say? But how close is too close when they may be one in the same?  
The Seven Stages War left much of the planet a charred wasteland. The future belongs to the next generation’s chosen few who must rebuild it. But to enter this elite group, candidates must first pass The Testing—their one chance at a college education and a rewarding career. 
Cia Vale is honored to be chosen as a Testing candidate; eager to prove her worthiness as a University student and future leader of the United Commonwealth. But on the eve of her departure, her father’s advice hints at a darker side to her upcoming studies--trust no one.  
But surely she can trust Tomas, her handsome childhood friend who offers an alliance? Tomas, who seems to care more about her with the passing of every grueling (and deadly) day of the Testing. To survive, Cia must choose: love without truth or life without trust.
I really enjoyed the characters Charbonneau created within the pages and the various settings she invited us into.  The Testing has it all: the strong and intelligent female lead, the love interest with secrets of their own, the supportive and morally thoughtful family, a corruptive system that has risen out of the rubble of horrific world wars and a secretive group of people who are rising up against the system.  

I, for one, cannot wait to read what Cia will uncover next and what new challenges await her in Independent Study (The Testing #2).

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