cover image The Rose Society

The Rose Society

Marie Lu. Putnam, $18.99 (416p) ISBN 978-0-399-16784-3

This intense sequel to The Young Elites begins with Dagger Society outcast Adelina and her equally gifted sister, Violetta, seeking other powerful Elites in the city-state of Merroutas after escaping from Teren and the Inquisition Axis's clutches. After acquiring new allies, Adelina heads back to Estenzia to seek revenge. Adelina has learned the hard way that "not all Elites can be allies," and Raffaele and his Daggers have formed their own alliance with Maeve, the northern queen of Beldain, whose dark Elite power can help them seize the Kenettran throne. Lu constructs a fascinating triangle of opposing forces seeking power, and the ensuing twists and epic battles leave many dead, broken, or forever changed. The novel is much darker than its predecessor, largely because its focus remains on the complex Adelina, more villain than hero. As her Elite strength grows, Adelina struggles to control her illusions, and the escalating whispers of fear in her head fuel her mistrust. "What is so great about being good?" she wonders as revenge becomes not about love or justice, but winning. Ages 12%E2%80%93up. Agent: Kristin Nelson, Nelson Literary Agency. (Oct.)