The Pledge by Kimberly Derting
Synopsis: In a country called Ludania, language is the dividing factor of the classes. Someone in a lower class cannot look upon a member of a higher class while they are speaking in their own language, is punishable by death. This is where our protagonist, 17-year-old Charlaina "Charlie," who has a secret: she has the ability to comprehend the languages of all the classes. But then she meets a mysterious boy, named Max, who can speak a language that she has never heard before, and she almost exposes her secret. As she is drawn to Max, she becomes aware that she doesn't truly trust him, nor does she know where his loyalties lie. When things in her violent country grow worse, and more information comes to light, we learn that Charlie may be the key to change in a country with a powerful, and deadly, regime.
My review: This book was a fast read, but I was hooked so I really didn't put it down for a whole day! I found it easy to relate to Charlie, the main character, but I could see some people having issues relating to her. As a lover of languages, I was hoping to get a peek of some of the fictional languages described in the book (with translations!) but it was all written in "Englais," our English. However, I could see how adding the other languages could be unnecessary and make the book a tad lengthy. The plot was a bit slow to start, but it gave us time to get to know a bit about each character first, which I enjoyed. The best part of this book, though, was that we readers got an ending of sorts, despite the fact that it is a book in a series. NO CLIFFHANGER! It was actually kind of wonderful. All in all, this was a good read.
My rating: 4/5