Age Range: 12 and up
Hardcover: 352 pages
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Books for Children (June 4, 2013)
Source: NetGalley (Thank you!)
Rating: 3 of 5 stars
Keep your friends close and your enemies closer. Isn’t that what they say? But how close is too close when they may be one in the same?
The Seven Stages War left much of the planet a charred wasteland. The future belongs to the next generation’s chosen few who must rebuild it. But to enter this elite group, candidates must first pass The Testing—their one chance at a college education and a rewarding career.
Cia Vale is honored to be chosen as a Testing candidate; eager to prove her worthiness as a University student and future leader of the United Commonwealth. But on the eve of her departure, her father’s advice hints at a darker side to her upcoming studies--trust no one.
But surely she can trust Tomas, her handsome childhood friend who offers an alliance? Tomas, who seems to care more about her with the passing of every grueling (and deadly) day of the Testing. To survive, Cia must choose: love without truth or life without trust.
"There is nothing standardized about this Testing. Charbonneau's imagination will surprise readers at every turn."
—Jennifer M. Brown, children's editor, Shelf Awareness
"Action-packed and full of twists, The Testing will keep you guessing until the very last page—and desperate for the next book!"
—Erica O'Rourke, author of the Torn Trilogy
"The rising tension, skillfully executed scenarios, and rich characterizations all contribute to an exciting story bound to capture readers' imaginations. . . . Charbonneau works action, romance, intrigue, and a plausible dystopian premise into a near-flawless
—Publishers Weekly, starred review
"Charbonneau jumps into the packed dystopia field with a mashup of Veronica Roth's Divergent (2011) and Suzanne Collins' Hunger Games trilogy, but she successfully makes her story her own."
About the Author:
While I'm happy to perform for an audience, I am equally delighted to teach private voice lessons and use my experience from the stage to create compelling characters on the page. I am the author of the Rebecca Robbins mystery series (Minotaur Books), The Paige Marshall Glee Club mysteries (Berkley) and The Testing YA triology (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt).
I've never been a huge fan of dystopian novels, but there are some good ones out there. The Testing is okay. It's nothing new, and most of it is very generic. While the plot and premise are both interesting, the characters aren't developed very well. The writing lacks a distinctive voice, and most character interactions feel forced. I am not in love with the book, but I don't hate it either. It falls right in the middle for me. That being said, it is still a well planned novel that most dystopian fans will enjoy.
Content: violence and disturbing scenes.