Review The Rose Society (The Young Elites #2) by Marie Lu

Review The Rose Society (The Young Elites #2) by Marie Lu

Synopsis: Once upon a time, a girl had a father, a prince, a society of friends. Then they betrayed her, and she destroyed them all.

Adelina Amouteru’s heart has suffered at the hands of both family and friends, turning her down the bitter path of revenge. Now known and feared as the White Wolf, she flees Kenettra with her sister to find other Young Elites in the hopes of building her own army of allies. Her goal: to strike down the Inquisition Axis, the white-cloaked soldiers who nearly killed her.

But Adelina is no heroine. Her powers, fed only by fear and hate, have started to grow beyond her control. She does not trust her newfound Elite friends. Teren Santoro, leader of the Inquisition, wants her dead. And her former friends, Raffaele and the Dagger Society, want to stop her thirst for vengeance. Adelina struggles to cling to the good within her. But how can someone be good when her very existence depends on darkness?

Bestselling author Marie Lu delivers another heart-pounding adventure in this exhilarating sequel to The Young Elites.
Rating: 4/5 Stars
Genres: Young Adult, High Fantasy

Other books in the series:

My thoughts:
Damn. Damn damn damn. That's all I can think really, because my thoughts are a blubbering mess. I have awaited this sequel for more than a year and now that I've finally had time to read it, I can assure you that The Rose Society does not disappoint.
“Once upon a time, a girl had a father, a prince, a society of friends. Then they betrayed her, so she destroyed them all.”
But I have not anticipated just how dark, twisted and, frankly put, sad the story will become. And at times, it was a little too much -- and I'm not talking as a sappy heart who can't take a bit of evil; I'm talking from the perspective of the devil's advocate, because believe it or not, seeing Adelina transform into a complete villain, although satisfactory and refreshing, was not what I'd have wished for her.
The beginning of the novel brought me back to this universe fairly easily, but I realized I could have stopped reading it at any time, because I was not "sucked in". Regardless, I was fascinated about Maeve's power and her potential to trigger some big changes within the plot lines exploited. Meeting Magiano also helped keep me entertained because he was swoon-worthy. Even after reading this book, he remains a partial enigma, but one so mysterious, sweet around the edges and mesmerizing that I cannot wait to see how the dynamic between him and Adelina will develop since, ahem, there is a potentially wonderful romance going on in here.
We also meet Sergei, the Rainmaker, and I'll admit he's kinda awesome. And Violetta has a much more central role to what happens now and I loved her support and unrequited love for Adelina. The plot also thickened when Teren, dear Teren, is also conquered by his obsession with Giulietta and his hatred of malfettos and his actions in this sequel gave way to countless developments. Turns out I'm not Maeve's fan either and Lucent irritated me, but you can't have them all now. 
“The irony of life is that those who wear masks often tell us more truths than those with open faces.”
But you know what truly affected me? The bits and pieces that scratched at Adelina's heart until it became of stone. Her turning into a ruthless villain could've been avoided, but the thirst for revenge only amplified as betrayals, memories, fears and paranoia all tumbled down to remind her that she is no longer powerless and she has the means to vanquish her wrongdoers. Add that to the fact that her power is slowly eating its way to her original principles and you got yourself a much different character than the one we've been introduced to in the first book.
I associate Adelina with a scared, abused girl, one that's trapped inside her own nightmares. There was a certain scene that involved stars and fire and kissing that brought a smile to my face at how joyous she can be only if someone truly reminded her of what is important. She doesn't know how to love, she doesn't know how to trust, she doesn't know how to forgive because life hasn't taught her any of those things. Life taught her to cower in fear, to be abandoned, used or hurt. Life taught her how love is not going to keep you alive, but conquering and destroying will because no one will dare strike back to the most powerful of them all. She’s a Darth Vader of her universe. An Elsa gone wild. A female Darkling, maybe even more so.  
You see, that's a whole other level of sad. Crazy, fucked-up sad. And it just keeps going, because The Daggers are present and well, Adelina is not thrilled at the prospect of their superiority yet again. Rafaelle even managed to make me shed a tear, pretty bastard, because he feels the echoes of what he did to Adelina tenfold now and he realizes that -- SURPRISE -- having an angry, paranoid girl with tremendous power hungry for your head is not such a great situation.

The last quarter of this story was explosive. Intense to the nth degree. Adelina shined as her otherworldly self and rose as a leader, strong and vengeful. A killer. A wolf. A queen. I'm not entirely sure what will happen in the next installment, because redemption is pretty far-fetched for her -- especially when a certain guy broke her heart all over again and said that he should've killed her long ago. Well, ouch.
“It is better to have an enemy who will fight you in an open field then a lover who will kill you in your sleep.”
There were other sad moments -- did I mention this book is sad? No? No? I'll repeat then -- like Gemma *sniff*, the sisters fighting like never before and, of course, the ending scene. It gutted me. Loneliness is not a good enough word to describe what I felt thanks to Marie Lu's epic storytelling. Oh, and there was enough sexiness to hyperventilate in between tension, lies and harsh strategy.
The Rose Society was a great follow-up to one of my favorite books. It's full of dark twists and turns, characters old and new alike that will make you rethink your support of one or another. It's enthralling, with the constant fight between good and evil in the background even in the smallest moments. Emotions run high, betrayals run deep and fears run rampant -- an assurance that the third book will be at least as complex as this one.

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