Friday, April 6, 2012

The Pledge by Kimberly Derting

Published: November 15, 2011
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Pages: 338
Rating: 4/5
In the violent country of Ludania, the language you speak determines what class you are, and there are harsh punishments if you forget your place—looking a member of a higher class in the eye can result in immediate execution. Seventeen-year-old Charlaina (Charlie for short) can understand all languages, a dangerous ability she’s been hiding her whole life. Her only place of release is the drug-filled underground club scene, where people go to shake off the oppressive rules of the world they live in. There, she meets a beautiful and mysterious boy who speaks a language she’s never heard, and her secret is almost exposed. Through a series of violent upheavals, it becomes clear that Charlie herself is the key to forcing out the oppressive power structure of her kingdom…. [Book Description from Amazon]
My review:
I read a quote by Carrie Ryan, a New York Times bestselling author, off the back cover of The Pledge before I started reading: “Derting's remarkably original and deliciously romantic dystopian, The Pledge, unfolds at a breakneck pace. I held my breath until the very last page and am already desperate for more!
Deliciously romantic dystopian. I was hooked even before I opened the book. I mean, I freakin’ live for these types of books.
And yes, if you’re curious, it did indeed deliver. J
The Pledge had a medieval feel to it. The whole evil queen + poor, oppressed citizens gave the book a…historical feel, so to speak. But the nightclubs and the magical powers that Charlie possesses offsets the historical feel with a modern, dystopian tone. It’s a lovely read. I really can’t say I hated anything about it. The plot was well-woven and the action was just right. And the romance…it was quite delicious, as Carrie Ryan put it. Oh goodness…if only the words “dystopian” and “romance” could always be in the same sentence! But alas, instances of finding them together are few and far between. Such is the cold, hard sadness of this world. *cough* But I digress.
One more point, and my personal favorite, as you all know (drumroll, please): The cover! Oh my word, it’s pure gorgeousness. My mom, who very willingly voiced her opinion about it, stated that she thought it was “creepy- looking.” It makes the book look creepier than it really is, to be honest. But still. *in love*
So, to sum it up, for anyone who loves dystopians, or for anyone who loves romance, or for anyone who loves neither, go out and read The Pledge, because I promise you, you’ll love it!
Quick Content Review:
Language: Mild (not too, too heavy- just here and there)
Violence: Mild- Moderate (a fight or two- nothing too bloody. Some torture- not described. Mention of a hanging.)
Sexual: Moderate (Mention of a girl and two guys kissing in a club…yeah, I know, it’s sick, so just skip it if it bothers you. Also, kissing between Max and Charlie, and at the end, mention of them in bed. No mention of whether they’re married or how old they are.)
Looking forward to the next book in this trilogy, The Essence, out January 2013!


  1. I'm not a YA reader normally but I do like dystopians. I'm going to keep an eye out for this because it sounds VERY good. Thanks for the review! (I hopped over from Katie's blog)

  2. I loved this book! The main character was pretty awesome :) Thank you for the review!

    Krystal @ Live to Read ~Krystal

  3. I really want to read this book. Great review! I can't wait to read.


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