on Sep. 12, 2013 :
I received a copy of the book from the author in exchange for an honest review. This does not alter my opinion on the novel in any shape or form.
Well that is what I call a cliffhanger!
Exalted far outperformed my expectations as a dystopian novel. It was everything an excellently crafted novel in this genre should be and more. A mix between 'The Hunger Games', 'Divergent' and 'Macthed' series with that little extra something that makes it amazingly unique, this is a book that I won't be forgetting in a hurry and that I thoroughly enjoyed.
'I followed all their rules. I participated in their Trials. I did everything I was told to do - but not anymore.'
Oh yes - this really had it all:
- GENERAL AWESOMNESS
In all seriousness though, this novel deserves some recognition. For a debut and self-published work it definitely is quite impressive. The fact that the story had so many exciting elements to it, from the effects of the Pump, to the issues of parental pressure on teenagers, to the questions of the society that Mena lived in. Everything was executed to such a high standard that I would expect this book to be one of the more 'well known' marketed dystopias out there. One thing's for sure; there was never a dull moment in this book. Unlike some reading experiences where you may feel things begin to drag in the middle, Exalted had more of a gradual ascent to the climax that reached what you thought may be the peak but it just kept on getting better.
'I glance back at the wall that surrounds the Republic. I don't feel alive in there.'
One aspect of the novel which I thought was really well developed was Mena's character. At the beginning of the novel she is just what every other Exalted should be; strong, powerful, resilient and emotionless. However, as the storyline progresses and she comes across some pieces of information that may change her mind, she begins to take into account her other options and thinking things through. Although her personality does not undergo a total transformation, she does seem to make some progress which I'm sure there is more of in the second book Denounced.
Now, for all you readers out there who cringe at the phrase 'love-triangle' I will warn you that there may be a hint of one here. However, to be honest romance doesn't really play a big part in the story, as it doesn't overpower the plot and real action that's going on. One other notable mention I will make is the fact that Tara Elizabeth seems to have this gift of changing locations in the novel and shifting it's direction so fluently and in such a way that even adds MORE to the excitement that is already there. Instead of this being a novel where you may think things start to drag a little, something comes right at you and reminds you just how good it really is.
To finish off - all I can say is that this is a dystopian novel that stands out from the competition. While others may be lacking in some areas, Exalted has it all. This is certainly an impressive novel and to the talented author who created it all I can say is:
(reviewed 8 days after purchase)
on Aug. 29, 2013 :
Post apocalypse, Fallout style, radiation, mind control, and one girl struggling against it all. I definitely liked this book. It exceeded all of my expectations. Fantastic!
(reviewed 4 months after purchase)
on Aug. 24, 2013 :
Wow! Love this book! This is a very exciting story by Tara Elizabeth. The society that Mena lives in is controlled by the government and one leader in particular. Mena struggles to find herself as she comes out of a drug-induced fog. I love how the characters interact with each other all the way to the end. I can hardly wait to begin the second book in the series, Denounced. Awesome!!
(reviewed 6 days after purchase)
on April 24, 2013 :
Tara Elizabeth wrote another wonderful story!
Exalted is a dystopian tale of Mena who lives in a world run entirely by the government. All of her life, she has been given a drug that makes the citizens incapable of feeling and showing emotion. She lives in a "gray" world until she consciously stops taking the drug. Suddenly, she feels the emotions that have always been denied such as love and anger. Her loyalties are tested and she has to pretend to be the person they expect her to be.
Ms. Elizabeth does a wonderful job of letting her readers know what it would be like to live in such a controlled society. I know this must be the first book of a series because of the cliffhanging way it ended. I'm anxious to see what decisions Mena makes and how those decisions will affect those around her whom she has realized she loves.
I'm sure we'll be seeing a lot of Tara Elizabeth in the future. Her writing will pull you into the story and her characters will keep you there.
(reviewed 5 days after purchase)