A while ago, I finished reading Carve the Mark, by Veronica Roth! The anticipation was quite high for this book, as you probably know. So the Young Adult Dome group and I decided to all read the book together.
These ideas and opinions are my own, though.
Note: I understand that there are many issues that have been brought to light considering Carve the Mark, notably by Justina Ireland. I do understand that this may affect people and dissuade people from reading the book. Bloggers are even changing their Goodreads rating of the book because of it. However, this issue will not be the center of my review - I will keep it as I usually do.
"In a galaxy powered by the current, everyone has a gift.
Cyra is the sister of the brutal tyrant who rules the Shotet people. Cyra’s currentgift gives her pain and power — something her brother exploits, using her to torture his enemies. But Cyra is much more than just a blade in her brother’s hand: she is resilient, quick on her feet, and smarter than he knows.
Akos is the son of a farmer and an oracle from the frozen nation-planet of Thuvhe. Protected by his unusual currentgift, Akos is generous in spirit, and his loyalty to his family is limitless. Once Akos and his brother are captured by enemy Shotet soldiers, Akos is desperate to get this brother out alive — no matter what the cost.
The Akos is thrust into Cyra's world, and the enmity between their countries and families seems insurmountable. Will they help each other to survive, or will they destroy one another?"
So. Carve the Mark. I can't really figure out if I liked it or not, to be completely honest. I liked the characters, but I found the world building to be rushed and messy. I honestly feel like I have to read it again to understand the world everything was happening in.
See, you have these planets in this Galaxy. Different planets have different people and different environments. These planets interact from time to time and people visit each other and the peoples mix and mingle. Between these planets, we have some kind of life force thing called the Current that is somehow a part of the people and gives them powers that reflect their personality but is also something in the universe that people can go visit.
To be fair I'd like a novella just explaining this universe and what's going on.
So, since I didn't understand the world-building, I stuck to concentrating on character development and the plot, which itself was very good! The characters imagined by Roth were colorful and intriguing. I enjoyed how she took the time to have two different points of view between Akos (who is just too sweet!) and Cyra, although I found it strange how Cyra's passages were in the first person while Akos's were in the third.
Akos is a very sweet character, but his character developed in a way I didn't like so much (very personally). He started off sweet and shy and kind, and ended up... buff? Is that the right word? He had fears and he never liked the idea of hurting people but I feel like there was a tipping point at which he was suddenly out of character, in my opinion. His Currentgift was being able to stop the current in other people - basically to hide their abilities. He has a complex family situation that leaves him quite introverted and protective.
Cyra is the opposite - she is all fire and can inflict pain with the slightest touch. She is ready to kill for what she believes in and rarely lets people stand in her way. She, unlike Akos, suffers from many internal problems that she hides from the world. I feel like they balance each other quite well!
Although I feel like the worldmaking was rushed and the story was quite complex, I still enjoyed reading this! I'm giving it a 3/5 feathers :)
Have you read Carve the Mark? What did you think? Let me know!
Have a great day!