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The Young Elites

(The Young Elites #1)

3.90  ·  Rating details ·  95,555 ratings  ·  12,235 reviews
I am tired of being used, hurt, and cast aside.

Adelina Amouteru is a survivor of the blood fever marked by a jagged scar where her left eye once was. Branded as a malfetto - an abomination - she is cast out from all she has ever known and loved.

Adelina finds sanctuary with other malfettos and discovers that the disease has left her with more than just a scar - she has a mysterious and powerf/>Adelina
Paperback, 357 pages
Published February 5th 2015 by Penguin (first published October 7th 2014)
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Faye Alonzo Not at all. The Darkest Minds is dark only up to its title. This is waaaaay darker than that. It's even soooooo much better.
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Average rating 3.90  · 
Rating details
 ·  95,555 ratings  ·  12,235 reviews

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Khanh, first of her name, mother of bunnies
I know who you really are. Who will ever want you, Adelina?

My fury heightens. Everyone. They will cower at my feet, and I will make them bleed.

Two words. Fuck, yeah!

I don't even know how to describe this book. Maybe William Shakespeare's Mistborn? It is not without its flaws, but the love of a book, much like the love of a human, is completely chemistry-based, and for me, this book just clicked. Every so often, the planets align, and Khanh completely loves a book. It happens!

This book has so many elements that I love. A very light romance. A dark, phy
Emily May
Dec 19, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014, young-adult, fantasy

Want to know what happens when Marie Lu does darker and sexier?

Then read this book.

Contrary to what I first believed, this book is not dystopian or post-apocalyptic, but is actually a dark fantasy set in a bleak world full of magic, complex villains and princes looking to reclaim their throne. And it's damn good.

Adelina Amouteru is a survivor of a blood fever that swept through her nation when she was a child. The fever left only a few survivors and those survivors remained permanently scarred with strange ma
Christine Riccio
Feb 27, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I grew to enjoy this book! At first I was hesitant, but the darkness of the characters eventually sucked me in and I will definitely be reading book 2. Here's my full review/discussion/booktalk:
“I am tired of losing. I am tired of being used, hurt and tossed aside.
It is my turn to use.
My turn to hurt.
My turn.


Has anyone seen the pictures for this?!?!?! Just with this you know it's going to be EPIC!!!

“I am tired of losing. I am tired of being used, hurt and tossed aside.
It is my turn to use.
My turn to hurt.
My turn.


Has anyone seen the pictures for this?!?!?! Just with this you know it's going to be EPIC!!!

These here are her actual drawings for the characters!!!

If it's even half as cool as these pictures it will be the best book ever! Let's hope it lives up to them!

More Pictures here:
Young Elite Inspiration Picture!!!!!!

Now it has a cover!

For some reason I expected something cooler. After all the cool pictures and concept of the story I expected something so much more colorful and just plain better. I hope they change it.


This was a very interesting book to read after reading Vicious by V.E. Schwab. Both are actually pretty similar. Both are filled with anti-heroes in search for redemption and revenge. The characters are hurt and they want to hurt. Many have been betrayed and many have betrayed. Everyone has their own morally ambiguous motives and everyone is determined to achieve their sometimes destructive goals.

Just like Vicious this book follows the lives of super powered characters. They are not your regular super powers as one might see in super heroes. These powers were acquired through death and sickness. These powers are unnatural and ungodly. At least that is what some say. Others believe these powers to be god sent. Also like Vicious there are characters that fill certain spots. The man looking to kill them all, believing himself to be holy. They even have the exact same power and that is Eli in Vicious and Teren in TYE. There is also the person looking to claim his revenge. In Vicious it is Victor while in TYE it is almost everyone. Still, in spite of the similarities I did manage to look at the two as very different books.

TYE takes place in a renaissance/ medieval-ish world. Ten years ago there was a plague that killed every adult infected. The children who were infected lived but came out twisted and marked. A few among them even came out with supernatural abilities that do not belong to the world of man. Now those with powers, called the young elites, are being hunted down and killed. They are also doing some hunting and killing of their own trying to dethrone the king of Kenettra so a new age of Elites can rule.

Mixed in the middle of all of this is Adelina a girl who has been abused and used her whole life. Now with her new found ability and Young Elite status she is out for vengeance. With darkness in her soul she will do whatever it takes to make sure that she is not the one that gets hurt anymore. That she is not the one that gets used. She vows to destroy anyone who has ever harmed her and take down anyone that dares to stand in her way.

The book was filled with interesting characters that I see as having a lot of potential. Great things can come in the future of those characters and I cannot wait to see how they all turn out. It is possible that my enjoyment of the story was affected by my reading of Vicious and the distracted way in which I read the book. Still, I think that great things will come from this story.

If anyone is interested in my Vicious review please click here!

Adelina definitely surprised me.

She's such a strong heroine. The kind we just love to have in our fantasy reads. It’s pretty crazy, to say, how easily she and I clicked. Turns out, even though I don’t believe myself to enjoy or, sometimes, want to hurt people, we have many things in common, such as fighting for what is dear to us, family and always trying our best.

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Adelina definitely surprised me.

She's such a strong heroine. The kind we just love to have in our fantasy reads. It’s pretty crazy, to say, how easily she and I clicked. Turns out, even though I don’t believe myself to enjoy or, sometimes, want to hurt people, we have many things in common, such as fighting for what is dear to us, family and always trying our best.


Enzo is the love-interest of Adelina. He is the rightful heir to the throne, but was banned, since he is a malfetto and malfettos are feared and, even, in some other places killed. Just because they’re different from others. They may not be ‘evil’ but, to the eyes of others, they very likely are since they are usually flawed and have unique powers. Enzo is the head of the Young Elites which is a secret sect of malfettos who are organizing…something big. They want to make of Enzo the ruler of the Kingdom. Which is fantastic. I think it to be a great idea…except that there wasn’t much they actually did to achieve their goal.

In fact, there wasn’t that much happening in the story. It mostly revolves around Adelina who became a spy, in order to free her sister, Violetta, from the hands of Teren, someone who despises malfettos. I do understand why Adelina decided to agree to Teren’s terms for the freedom of her dear sister, but I think the whole concept and situation was too simple, in a way. There was a lot lot lot of potential but it feels, to me, like the author somehow decided to take the easiest path, because of how she ‘handled’ everything that happened. No scenes that will blow your mind.

Other than that, I did enjoy this, really. I wasn’t that disappointed, since I did not have very high expectations, being one of the few who were not mesmerized by the ‘awesomeness’ (as many say) of the Legend trilogy. I enjoyed it, same as this one, but nothing more…

There was almost no romance. A little, but this is definitely not driven by romance. When it was present though, I was hooked and hold my breath at how captivating it was. But, like I said, there’s isn’t much of it. What a shame.

The writing was good and pleasant enough to read. I did think that the world-building wasn’t as developed as there was possibility to be though. The author did a great job at creating unforgettable characters but, in my opinion, she kind of neglected the world-building. There is some of it, of course, but you can see how the characters are more important compared to it.

When I think about how the author switched from dystopian (with Legend) to fantasy, (with this) I think she overall proved that she can create a story, whatever the genre will be. And that’s fantastic! Bravo to her! Would love to see if she pulls contemporary off. I think she could.

I would recommend this to fantasy fans out there. Be warned, though, it is very different from her well-known trilogy. You may see similarities to characters but, other than that, it’s completely different. It was a good read, some scenes were dragging here and there or having too much of Adelina’s internal struggles but it was engaging enough and the magic interesting.

PS. Am I the only one who thinks the cover is a little…cheap? Giving the impression that the design as a whole is only half finished? What are your thoughts on it?

-First art
-Second art
Virginia Ronan ♥ Herondale ♥
”His words remind me of the strange whispers that have accompanied my illusions – something dark and vengeful, tempting and powerful. A weight presses on my chest. I am afraid. Intrigued.”

As it seems 2018 is not only the year in which I’ll finally finish a few series I’ve been reading for years, but also the year in which I hand out my v-card to new authors I’ve never read before. *lol*

Last week it was Holly Black’s “The Darkest Part of the Forest” this week its Marie Lu’s “The Young Elites” and after r
Dec 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
i love marie lu, so i had no idea i could love her more than i already did. but i honestly think this is my favourite book (and potentially series) she has written. its dark, twisted, powerful, and it surprised me in so many ways.

her other two series have either a sci-fi or dystopian feel to them, with both taking place in the future. so assumed this would be similar - imagine my intrigue when i realised the story takes place in renaissance italy?! i am totally on board with that. i just wish t
Claudia Ramírez
Oct 17, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: made-me-cry, 2014
Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘

Edit 03/23 : There's no denying that I was disappointed in The Young Elites, but I thought I'd point that I absolutely loved The Rose Society, its sequel. So, you know, fellow minority readers - I hope it will be the same for you^^

My review of book 2 : The Rose Society ★★★★★


Hey YOU! BOOK! You pretended to be right up my alley! You said I will love you! You said you were dark and captivating!

The truth is, after getting off to a flying start, the tension loosened more and more, making the next 300 pages a real core to read for me. Whe★★★★★
Kayla Dawn
Sep 24, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned-books
Still waiting for a hyped ya series that won't disappoint me..

I seriously don't get why people say the protagonist is an anti hero. She literally is a typical ya fantasy protagonist that tries too hard to be dark and twisted. It's hella annoying.
The other characters were pretty boring and I can't even remember their names lol.
There wasn't much backstory to any of them except for the main character. I hope there will be more in the second & third book.

The plot itself wasn'
Saania Zee Jamal ϟ
I've never had such mixed feelings about a book before.

Bloody hell.

Pros: it's in the POV of an innocent victim-turned-antihero-turned-villian, which is something you just don't get enough of in the young adult realm (or at least that I've come across). And Marie Lu isn't afraid to take bold decisions here, oh yes.

Cons: the writing. It feels lifeless, like a fellow classmate reading out a scene from your school literature book; you're hearing it, you're understanding it, but you're n/>:
✨    jamieson   ✨
“Some hate us, think us outlaws to hang at the gallows.
Some fear us, think us demons to burn at the stake.
Some worship us, think us children of the gods.
But all know us.

HOLY SHIT this book was that fucking good y'all

im so damn SHOOK

This is the first book I've read in AGES where I've been genuinely thrilled about the plot ? where I've been so excited to know what happens next. I couldn't put this down ?? I'm so happy ??

everything about it is just .... amazing. the story, the complex characters, the world, the plot, the action, THE FAC
Shelby *trains flying monkeys*

*Gets into left lane*

I think someone switched my copy of this book with someone else's. I just can't read this mess. I'm about halfway through it and nothing has happened, well except me sleeping. No awesome world building, MC who got on my nerves..the list goes on.

I will give Marie Lu another chance though, cuz I do like her.
Jessi ♥️ H. Vojsk

„Some hate us, think us outlaws to hang at the gallows.
Some fear us, think demons to burn at the stake,
Some worship us, think us children of the gods.
But all know us.”

Story ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Did you ever wished that there was a story about a character so filled with darkness, that she easily could be the villain?
Always mistreated, mistrusted and hated Adelina lives a horrible life with her father and sister.
He hates her because she is a malfetto, a survivor of the blood fever left with a marking on her face - the loss of an eye - an
What you need to know about The Young Elites, by Maire Lu:

(1) This is not a story about a grey character, nor a dark character, nor an anti hero, it's a story about a needy, confused, selfish and scared little girl screwing up, using her superhuman power in all the wrong ways, making bad decisions and letting her fear get the better of her.

Well... Raffaele or maybe Teren come close to being grey characters, but Adelina, a grey character she is not.

(2) Our main characters: The Young Elites (TYE for short) are rather goofy as anot.
THE YOUNG ELITES by Marie Lu does something remarkable: take old tropes and archetypes but put fresh, unique spins on them. Reading this made me feel like I was in a world that was already familiar, but then she'd sweep the rug out from underneath me and change things completely!

Adelina Amouterou is a malfetto; meaning, she is marked and ostracized by her community for surviving a virus that made so many others perish before her. She is marked in more ways than one– she lost her eye to the viru
Natalie Monroe
Recipe for a awesome YA Fantasy (Young Elites style)

You will require:

-3/4 of a cup of cultured flour

-1/2 cup watery religion

-a dash of magic

-500 grams of Anti-heroine, dark and bitter

-2 teaspoons of Estranged Prince (fiery brand)

-1 package of Interesting Side Characters mix

-3 diverse eggs, separated amongst LGBT free-range, POC jumbo, and disabled cage-free.

-a pinch of death


In a bowl, mix cultured flour and watery religion together to create a rich dough of world-building. After the mixture thickens, add in tdeath
Wendy Darling
3.5 stars Surprisingly dark, with a sister dynamic similar to Cruel Beauty's and a feel similar to that of Masque of the Red Death's. I admit that the middle lagged a bit for me, I didn't love the multiple POV structure, and there is a LOT of activity going on in Adelina's heart (many references to energy spiking in it, her feelings, etc), but I quite like this world the author has created, and am intrigued to see where the story goes next.

One thing the blurbs don't tell you that you find out in the first chapter:
Ben Alderson
Dec 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Mikee Andrea (ReadWithMikee)
❝The darkness bows to me, eager for my embrace. I close my eye, open my heart to the feeling, and soak in the delight of vengeance.❞

When I first joined Goodreads, The Young Elites was one of the first books I tried to read. But after reading the first 50 pages or so, I DNFed it because I was completely creeped out by Adelina's one eye malfetto flaw. XD Plus, I honestly couldn't get into the story. As The Young Elites became more popular, everyone praised this book and series to no end. Everyone was exc
Mar 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favourites, badass
In the good years, they wine and dine, laugh and love.
In the bad years, they draw their swords and
slit each other’s throat.

My first Marie Lu book and it did not disappoint. This book was straight up badass. From the plot to the characters, everything was perfect. It really does not deserve anything less than five stars.
It also reminded me of Six Of Crows but if you're planning on reading it don't think it'd be exactly like SOC just that it also has super cool immoralistic group of kids doing... stuff.
*Minor spoilers ahead*

Okay, this book is literally nothing like the Legend series. This is so much more brutal, intriguing, heartbreaking and crazy.

(i've been dying to do this)
Prince Enzo Prince Zuko who is a malfetto a bender with the power of fire with the ability to control fire and is exiled from the palace and throne and is banished from the Fire Nation. He was obviously my favorite.


Adelina is such a badass character, but sadly I couldn't really care for her. She had a rough childhood where her mother died and she was abused and treated worse th
Adam Silvera

A Game of Thrones meets X-Men in this 14th-century fantasy from Marie Lu (the Legend trilogy), in a world where "fear is power."

Sixteen-year-old Adelina Amouteru is a malfetto, one whose appearance is "marked" by the blood fever that crippled the country of Kenettra and claimed her mother's life. The blood fever took Adelina's left eye, turned her hair silver, and gave her a power that's remained dormant--until the fateful night her merchant fat

"Some hate us,

think us outlaws to hang at the gallows.

Some fear us,

think us demons to burn at the stake.

Some worship us,

think us children of the gods.

But all know us.

They call us the Young Elites."

Teren, man, you got issues.. man,... you need to get your shit together!
Adelina, my sweet, sweet Adelina! Only god knows what's gonna happen to you now.
Raffaele, dude, how dare you! I expected more from you.
Enzo, my baby, Enzo! I guess, i knew it was gonna happen, it's just the way it went down left me hollow.
Violetta; yeah, she's go

It is my turn to use. My turn to hurt.
My turn.

Blurb: Adelina Amouteru is a survivor of the blood fever. A decade ago, the deadly illness swept through her nation. Most of the infected perished, while many of the children who survived were left with strange markings. Adelina’s black hair turned silver, her lashes went pale, and now she has only a jagged scar where her left eye once was. Her cruel father believes she is a malfetto, an abomination, ruining their family’s good name and standing in the way o
Jan 04, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult
“Everyone has darkness inside them, however hidden.”

When a story isn't told by a hero who goes save the world at all costs and goodness can't conquer darkness, so the hero falls to his knees and his story doesn't end well. This is what I want to say about my expereince with this shocking Young Elites series. I am being in awe right now for Lu. I can't believe that she wrote such an amazing story like this among many typical YA books out there. She didn't even try to make her story feel good f
"But that's something everyone says and no one means. No one wants you to be yourself. They want you to be the version of yourself that they like."

If you go into this book expecting a hero with nothing but good in her heart, put this book down right now, and go read Harry Potter, or something. This is a book about an anti-hero, a villain, a girl who has been stepped on, used, and manipulated. This is a book about people with an un-tamable hunger for power. This is a book about revenge.


"Such power over these little mlike
Brittney ~ Reverie and Ink
I'm dancing somewhere between 3.5 and 4 stars.. and I'm actually pleasantly surprised. I adore Marie Lu's other series (Legend) - but for some reason I didn't think this one would be up my alley at all.

I ended up really connecting with Adelina. I know this trilogy is more or less about her becoming either a villain or anti-hero... not exactly sure which one yet, and I'm actually glad I don't know for sure either way. I felt for her from page one - her story was just gut wrenchingly s
Lily ☁️
One of those rare novels that you want to re-read even before you’ve finished them ...

“Dark thoughts swim in the far corners of my mind. Something is alive in those whispers, clawing for my attention, beckoning me deeper into the shadows.” //

Blog | Bloglovin’ | Instagram | Twitter | Tumblr
Andreea Pop
This book wrecked me.

The Young Elites is nothing like I expected. Familiar with Marie Lu's style and a die-hard fan of the Legend series, I thought this new story will be along the same lines as Lu's prior works: action-packed, romantic, funny -- you know the drill. Only set in a fantasy world, of course, but nonetheless still cute on a basic level.

That... Was a mistake, because The Young Elites is so far from cute you cannot imagine. Eons away from cute. Zero cuteness.

“A newborn babe takes its first breath
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[Note: Many apologies, but I'm woefully bad at checking my Goodreads emails! If you'd like to send a note/msg, please catch me on Twitter: . Thanks!]

I write young adult novels, and have a special love for dystopian books. Ironically, I was born in 1984. Before becoming a full-time writer, I was an Art Director at a video game company. Now I shuffle around at home and talk to myself a

Other books in the series

The Young Elites (3 books)
  • The Rose Society (The Young Elites, #2)
  • The Midnight Star (The Young Elites, #3)
“Be true to yourself. But that's something everyone says and no one means. No one wants you to be yourself. They want you to be the version of yourself that they like.” 1073 likes
“It is pointless to believe what you see, if you only see what you believe.” 672 likes
More quotes…