Saturday, October 5, 2013

Review: The Elite by Rachel van Dyken

For Tracey Rooks, life with her grandparents on a Wyoming farm has always been simple. But after her grandmother's death, Tracey is all her grandfather has. So when Eagle Elite University announces its annual scholarship lottery, Tracey jumps at the opportunity to secure their future and enters. She isn't expecting much-but then she wins. And life as she knows it will never be same...

The students at Eagle Elite are unlike any she's ever met... and they refuse to make things easy for her. There's Nixon, gorgeous, irresistible, and leader of a group that everyone fears: The Elect. Their rules are simple. 1. Do not touch The Elect. 2. Do not look at The Elect. 3. Do not speak to The Elect. No matter how hard she tries to stay away, The Elect are always around her and it isn't long until she finds out the reason why they keep their friends close and their enemies even closer. She just didn't realize she was the enemy -- until it was too late.

The Elite kicks off with Tracey winning a lottery to get into an extremely prestigious school, the kind dignitaries, wealthy businessmen, actors and the like send their kids to. Her grandfather drops her off and she hasn’t even set foot inside the halls before she’s given a once-over, found lacking, and receives a thorough introduction into what her stay there will be like. From thereon out her ride is a rollercoaster of ups and down. No, I lie. It’s more like she’s thrown into a tumble dryer with nothing but her emotions and attacks from all sides, and no way to block either with. SO MUCH FUN!

The second Tracey’s grandfather left and she’s approached by Dixon and his wingmen I knew this novel would be a winner for me. It started with a bang and kept on throwing punches until the very end.

I loved watching Tracey go through all these changes in her life so rapidly and how she handled every single one of them. Yes, she sticks up for herself and shows them that they won’t get her down. No, it doesn’t always work. She sticks out, but as a real person among a crowd of people thinks she means next to nothing in their world. It’s the kind of experience that builds character and I can’t wait to see what she makes of the coming problems(problems is putting it mildly).

Dixon. My word, Dixon. He’s such a bastard and I loved every single page with him on it. His actions and reactions(both so contradictory throughout the novel) made him stand out as a character from all the other book boys I met this year. He’s mean and vulnerable and a total a-hole and has a deep sense of responsibility and a hint of sadness as well. I loved him and can't wait to spend more time with him.

The Elite was well written, had a great pace, and was a definite page-turner for me. One of the best things for me while reading this was that it sort of played in my head like a movie the whole time, and more than once I thought that it would make a fantastic anime.  It was so over the top and dramatic in all the right ways. I couldn’t put it down. It’s in my top 5 for the year and I might just reread it when the second one comes out.

I can’t wait for more from this author.

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