Carve the Mark

Veronica Roth. HarperCollins/Tegen, $22.99 (480p) ISBN 978-0-06-234863-0
Roth (the Divergent series) returns with a gripping space opera about two individuals who share a planet but come from very different worlds. Cyra belongs to the ruling family of the Shotet, a people wrestling for planetary power against the gentle, prophetic Thuvhesit. Like all people, Cyra has a “currentgift” bestowed by the galactic current that connects all living things, but hers is darker than most: she lives in debilitating pain, eased only when she unleashes it on another—a fearsome spectacle that her cruel, power-hungry brother often forces her to employ. Akos, raised among the Thuvhesit and kidnapped by the Shotet, has a similarly singular currentgift: his touch relieves Cyra of her pain. Forced together, the two become hesitant friends and unlikely allies as the simmering tension between their two nations reaches new heights. Roth’s worldbuilding is commendable; each nation is distinct, interacting with the current in ways that give insight into her characters’ motivations. Amid political machinations and forays into space, Roth thoughtfully addresses substantial issues, such as the power of self-determination in the face of fate. Readers will eagerly await a second installment. Ages 14–up. Agent: Joanna Volpe, New Leaf Literary & Media. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 12/05/2016
Release date: 01/17/2017
Ebook - 480 pages - 978-0-06-234865-4
Downloadable Audio - 978-0-06-264200-4
Hardcover - 636 pages - 978-1-4104-9611-9
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