*Originally posted on Southern Bred, Southern Read Blog on 12/25/14*
I have had this book on my TBR forevvvvvver. Basically, it is a dystopian world that is ruled by a queen that has implemented a caste system. The caste system is divided by different types of labor, but most importantly it is divided by language. Each class has their own language (with one universal language) and it is against the law to know/learn languages of the different classes. Charlie was born with a special gift where she can recognize and understand any language just by seeing or hearing it. This is a very dangerous gift to have, because the punishment for the crime of acknowledging other languages is death. Her parents have closely guarded her and raised her to know how dangerous her gift is and how they must keep it a secret. Everything changes when she meets this guy named Max in a club and he and his friends speak a language she has never heard before (but because of her gift, she immediately can understand it). Max takes a liking to her and forces himself in her life.
I really liked the basic concept of this book. The whole language thing definitely brings a new idea to the whole dystopian thing. I liked how Charlie’s gift is so forbidden and how she really has to force herself to make sure she doesn’t slip up and let others know. I love the relationship she has with her baby sister, Angelina. No matter what, she will protect her even if it means putting herself in harms way. I find this a very admirable trait. I like how the book switched POVs so you as a reader knew what was going on from many different character angles. Max is a huge likable part of the book as well. He is handsome and charming and relentless about getting Charlie’s attention. I enjoyed their relationship.
“I pledge to keep you safe.”
The book is really predictable though. I pretty much could guess what path the plot was going to take and how it was going to end after just a few chapters. Even the twists that came up (besides one involving one of her friends.. I didn’t see that one coming!) and the ending/epilogue I predicted. I know I am probably alone in this (I don’t care what anyone says.. I love insta-love and love triangles!!), but I really wish there was a love triangle… Well, I guess more of a love square. I really wanted one to develop between Charlie, Max, Xander, and Aron. Maybe something like this will develop later on in the series, IDK. I also didn’t really like Charlie’s friend, Brook. I hated her personality and thought that she was a really crappy friend towards Charlie.
Despite all of this, I still enjoyed the book. It was an easy and quick read. I will be buying the other books in the series, though they aren’t a top priority. I would have given the book a higher star rating if the plot wouldn’t have been so predictable. I also want to add how sweet Kimberly Derting is. I wrote her a letter via snail mail a few months ago (before I had even read any of her books) and she replied back VERY quick and included swag (bookmarks, book plates, etc). She is definitely one of the nicest authors I have written to and I really appreciate her dedication to answering letters from her readers!