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The Rose Society
Cover of The Rose Society
The Rose Society
The Young Elites Series, Book 2
by Marie Lu
From New York Times bestselling author Marie Lu comes the second book in the exhilarating Young Elites series

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 and her sister flee Kenettra 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?

From New York Times bestselling author Marie Lu comes the second book in the exhilarating Young Elites series

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 and her sister flee Kenettra 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?

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  • Lexile:
    720
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  • Text Difficulty:
    3

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Excerpts-
  • From the book Adelina Amouteru

    The Little Baths of Bethesda turn out to be a set of ruins at the edge of Merroutas.

    Early the next morning, as the sun crests the horizon and fishing boats set out into the bay, Violetta and I make our way down the dirt path leading out of the city-state's main gates and to a smaller cluster of abandoned domed houses, all situated beneath the stone arches of a former aqueduct.

    It looks like a place that once bustled with activity. But the bathhouse itself—or what's left of it—was built on soft ground, which must have sealed its fate. As people abandoned the bathhouse, so must they have abandoned the small settlement of homes around it. Or perhaps the aqueduct delivering its water crumbled first. The once-glorious pillars at its entrance have now collapsed, and the stone foundation has sunk into the marshy soil. Vines crawl up the stone, their flowers vibrant green and yellow. I feel a strong attraction to this place's ruined beauty.

    "He's here," Violetta whispers beside me, her brow furrowed in concentration.

    "Good." I adjust my mask across my own ruined face and approach the entrance.

    The bathhouse is cool and dark inside, its arched stone ceiling covered with mosses and ivy. Narrow shafts of light cut through the ceiling's openings, illuminating the pools of water below. We step carefully through the halls of ancient marble colonnades. The air smells wet and musky, the scent of something green and alive. The sound of dripping water echoes all around us.

    Finally I stop where the bath pool begins. "Where is he?" I whisper.

    Violetta lifts her eyes to the ceiling. She spins in a half circle, then focuses on a dark corner. "There."

    I strain to see into the shadows. "Magiano," I call out. My voice startles me—it bounces off the walls, over and over, until it finally fades away. I clear my throat, a little embarrassed, and continue in a quieter tone. "We were told we could find you here."

    There is a long silence, so long that I start to wonder whether Violetta might be mistaken.

    Then, someone laughs. As the sound echoes from surface to surface, a flurry of leaves rain down from the bathhouse's mossy banisters. A trail of dark braids flashes in and out of the light. I instinctively extend one of my arms in front of Violetta, as if that might protect her.

    "Adelina," a voice calls playfully. "How nice to see you."

    I try to pinpoint where the voice comes from.

    "Are you Magiano, then?" I reply. "Or are you just taunting us?"

    "Do you remember a comedy called The Temptation of the Jewel?" he continues after a pause. "The play opened in Kenettra a couple of years ago, to great fanfare, right before the Inquisition banned it."

    I do remember it. The Temptation of the Jewel was about a dull, arrogant knight who continually bragged that he could steal a jewel from an ogre's lair—only to be bested by a cheeky young boy, who snatched the prize first. It was penned by Tristan Chirsley, the same famous scribe who'd written the Stories of the Star Thief collection, and its final performance had happened in Dalia, in a theater overflowing with people.

    The Star Thief. I shake my head, trying not to think of Gemma and the others. "Yes, of course I do," I respond. "How is this relevant? Are you a Chirsley admirer?"

    Another laugh sounds through the vast space. Another shuffle of feet and flurry of leaves high above us. This time, we look up and see a dark silhouette crouched on a rotting wooden beam right over our heads. I step aside to look more properly at him. In the shadows, all I can make out are...
Reviews-
  • DOGO Books spinnypeeps - Absolutely thrilling. This book had my heart wrenched from the inside out and I don't hesitate to give it five stars. Marie Lu somehow manages to make me root for Adelina to come back- for her to win her inner struggle to stay good. My heart sincerely aches for her. A true masterpiece- how could a book make me feel like this? Whoever is reading this review get this book RIGHT NOW.
  • Publisher's Weekly

    Starred review from October 5, 2015
    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–up. Agent: Kristin Nelson, Nelson Literary Agency.

  • Kirkus

    September 1, 2015
    A heroine's tragic tumble dominates the second volume of this trilogy. After Adelina's expulsion by the Daggers for the dreadful events at the conclusion of The Young Elites (2014), she and her sister flee abroad seeking allies for their vendetta. The sisters are malfettos, survivors of the blood fever, marked with physical changes that leave them hated and feared in their native Kenettra. Kenettra's now ruled by the sister of Adelina's beloved Enzo, crown prince of Kenettra, who was killed by Adelina's own mistakes. The new queen allows her Inquisitor lover to take out his anti-malfetto hatred by enslaving the country's non-Elite malfettos: mere scarred victims without the phenomenal cosmic powers marking Young Elites. Adelina claims her goal is rescue of the malfettos, but she is truly motivated by less pure urges: vengeance on the Daggers, who cast her out; destruction of the Inquisitor, for all the harm he's done to Adelina and Enzo; and sheer ambition, as she's egged on by the whispering voices in her head that fuel her illusion-shaping powers. Adelina's new allies try to soften her more spine-chilling urges, but they're not models of temperance and morality themselves. The direction of this trilogy's conclusion is left refreshingly difficult to predict. Original and sobering, Adelina is an antihero of nigh-unremitting darkness: an unusual young woman in the mold of such archetypes as Lucifer, Macbeth, and Darth Vader-and even Kissin' Kate Barlow from Holes. (Fantasy. 13 & up)

    COPYRIGHT(2015) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • School Library Journal

    October 1, 2015

    Gr 9 Up-"Once upon a time, a girl had a father, a prince, a society of friends. Then they betrayed her, so she destroyed them all." Lu's epic series takes a dark, gritty turn with her latest offering. Adelina, known as the White Wolf, has fled Kenettra with Violetta, her sister, in order to recruit other malfettos (superpowered humans) for revenge upon the Inquisition-the faction that killed her love Enzo and countless other malfettos. Turned out and betrayed by her former comrades, the Daggers, Adelina is determined to form her own army, especially once she stumbles upon the near-mythical malfetto named Magiano. As the leader of the Inquisition, Teren, continues to search for Adelina so he can destroy her, she turns toward a more somber facet of her energy. Her path explodes into a dizzying array of power, murder, and revenge, leaving Adelina to question her true nature. When a malfetto queen conspires to raise Enzo from the dead, Adelina must face, once and for all, her feelings and her desires for power. What sets this novel apart is Adelina's slow spiral into bleak, joyless corruption; Lu doesn't wrap up the narrative with a shiny bow. Teens will be fascinated to watch the main character descend into villainy and revel in it. VERDICT Fans of Sarah Maas's Throne of Glass (Bloomsbury, 2012) and Sabaa Tahir's An Ember in the Ashes (Penguin, 2015) will enjoy the author's latest.-Amanda C. Buschmann, Atascocita Middle School, Humble, TX

    Copyright 2015 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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