Author: Aimee Carter
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
An early copy was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
YOU CAN BE A VII. IF YOU GIVE UP EVERYTHING.
For Kitty Doe, it seems like an easy choice. She can either spend her life as a III in misery, looked down upon by the higher ranks and forced to leave the people she loves, or she can become a VII and join the most powerful family in the country.
If she says yes, Kitty will be Masked—surgically transformed into Lila Hart, the Prime Minister's niece, who died under mysterious circumstances. As a member of the Hart family, she will be famous. She will be adored. And for the first time, she will matter.
There's only one catch. She must also stop the rebellion that Lila secretly fostered, the same one that got her killed and one Kitty believes in. Faced with threats, conspiracies and a life that's not her own, she must decide which path to choose—and learn how to become more than a pawn in a twisted game she's only beginning to understand.
I have been a huge fan of Aimée Carter ever since I read her Goddess Test series (which, by the way, I'm so sad is over)! When I found out she was writing a new series, more specifically a new dystopian series, I frolicked and squealed once I saw this beauty appear on NetGalley. I'll be honest with all of you, I thought I'd seen all dystopian has to offer, but Pawn's unique storyline is both engaging and utterly captivating. Where's book two? because I need it now!
Pawn is set in a world where society is classified into groups ranging from I to VII-- the lower your number, the less of a value you are to society. And the less valuable you are, the less resources and opportunities you get. Once eighteen, Kitty Doe takes the test that determines which rank she'll be, but when she doesn't get the chance to complete it, she's classified as a three and is assigned halfway across the country to do sewer maintenance for the rest of her life. Not only does she have to leave her Nana, but now Kitty must find a way to stay with her boyfriend Benjy who'll without a doubt achieve a much higher ranking than she. A series of events puts Kitty in a situation where there's an opportunity to become a VII-- a ranking only granted to the ruling Hart family. Desperate to have a higher ranking, she blindly agrees to do whatever they want and is shocked to wake up and find herself matched to look identical to Lila Hart, the Prime minister's niece. Now, Kitty is forced to go through training to make herself believably act and sound like Lila so the public never knows of her death. If Kitty fails, she risks loosing the people she truly cares about forever.
Kitty's character had qualities I both loved and disliked. Her determination to protect those she cares about and her ability to stand up to those who hold power over her were qualities I admired greatly. However her occasional inability to understand why certain people made certain decisions (specifically Knox) at times frustrated me. As a whole though, the way in which Kitty manages to mold herself into a stranger's life, her stubbornness and determination to fight for more equality within her world made a her a narrator I enjoyed.
Oh course, what's a dystopian without some love drama thrown into the mix?! Although the romantic elements are not the main focus of Pawn, there is an underlying connection that continues to build between Kitty and Knox (Lila's, now technically Kitty's, fiancé ) despite the fact Kitty still has feelings for Benjy. In all honesty, I love the idea of Kitty and Knox together a million times more than her and Benjy. There's a spark between Kitty and Knox that I just desperately want to see come out and shine!!
I loved the dynamic between the members of the Hast family, AKA, the ruling family of the States! There's so much betrayal, hatred, scheming, secrecy and somehow even love amongst them all that gave Pawn an intense vibe. It makes every revelation heightened in shock value which resulted in added drama. This is not the typical hero vs. bad guy novel--The Hasts are an actual family that have a love/hate type of relationship and communicate in a "I know what your up to, but I'm not going to blatantly tell you that I know even though I want you to know I'm on to you" kind of way. It's completely bizarre and I think it's one of the reasons Kitty becoming a part of this family adds to the strangeness of it all-- I mean, could you imagine murdering a family member and then getting a stranger to look and act exactly like them as if nothing ever happened?
Overall, I'm really excited about this new dystopian series! I thought I was done with dystopians, but Pawn's unique world filled with betrayal, rebellion, secrecy and a little bit of romance proved that this genre still has so much more to offer! The ending has given me a buzzing desire for book two! What's your favourite dystopian read? What would you do if you had to live someone else's life? Be sure to let me know in the comments below! Keep reading!
Your Y.A. Bookworm,