Monday, January 20, 2014

Book Review: The Pledge by Kimberly Derting

Title: The Pledge (The Pledge #1)
Author: Kimberly Derting Goodreads | Website
Published: October 2012 (First published on 2011)
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Source: Purchased from Popular bookstore
Buy: Hmm not doing this anymore, it takes up a lot of my review writing time, google them please :)
dis trickery cover.

I didn't like this book one bit. Except for that trickery cover.


The only reason I purchased and read this book is because of that cover. And the blurb at the back of the book. 

It sounded like my cup of tea. Dystopian (I love reading this genre, but I think The Hunger Games might just put the bar a little too high, I tend to dislike the book if I don't get the feels like THG did with me, but that's just me).

The book takes place in an effed up country called Ludania, that divides its citizens based on languages. Sort of a language caste system. A system that divides the people into class and languages that is superior and inferior than the others. It is forbidden to speak/understand/respond to another languages that are superior than your class. Failure to do so will make you end up at the gallows -- hanging to the death. It seems promising isn't it?

Me at the start of the book.

The class/language hierarchy:

Royal > Nobleman (I couldn't remember the exact name of the class, but it's something along that line) > Merchant (speaks Parshon) > Servant (speaks Englaise only)
Englaise is kind of a universal language. Everyone can speak the language.

I had issues with many aspects of the books. Firstly, the dystopian society setting. It's a rip-off from a popular dystopian book, in my opinion. The name of the streets, schools and districts. School 22, School 23, School 55, Street 40, Capitol. Ring any bell?

The effed up queendom. I should have feel frightened and terrorized but nope I didn't feel anything like that at all. I wasn't horrified at the hanging thing. The queen and her threats didn't scare the wits out of me. She's just an old bastard who needs wheelchair to move around, why can't someone just push her down the stairs, or poison her? Oh wait, she has magic. No, queen, no, your magic didn't frighten the living daylight out of me.

The kids name. Children aren't allowed to be named after a normal ordinary name. They should be named after the long lost cities/places around the world as a remembrance. Like Sydney, Paris, New York, Tokyo, Seoul, Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur. Like wut? And yet, the main character, Charlie isn't named after any cities at all. Charlaina Hart, you should have been dragged to the gallows years ago. I was confuzzled.

The protagonist. A female protagonist who loves her younger sister to the power of 9999 and would do anything for her so long that her lil sister is safe from any harm. Again, ring any bell?

The characters. I didn't like any of them. I couldn't connect with them.

1) Charlie. A pretty girl. Loves her younger sister to death. Comes from Merchant class. 

By right, she should only understand and speaks Parshon and Englaise. But, nope, she has the ability to understand every spoken language in a blink of an eye without having to learn and heard it beforehand. Okay. Cool. You can understand all languages, so what did you do? Nothing. She did nothing. Why? Why can't you do something out of the gift you were born with? Go rob a bank, or sneak inside the palace or the Nobleman school (children of different classes go to different school), or spit ancient languages in rainbows.

Charlie is a bipolar. She has acute bipolar feelingitis disorder. There's this guy called Max that she falls in love with (insta-love, at that, which I hate immensely), of whom she met at a night club (good job, Charlie). This girl needs medical attention.

In defense of my bipolar point: She always goes like this, in her head (not in exact words):
"Oh his lips are so gorgeous, his cheeks are gorgeous, his eyes, nose and nostrils are gorgeous. I should put my hand on them"
*Hand goes over his face*
A second later..
"I shouldn't be doing this."
*pulls hand away*

Make up your mind, girl.

Charlie said she was frightened of Max, when they first met because he emanates some 'dangerous aura'. And the very next day, when she woke up, she decided that looking for him is the best thing to do on Earth ever. I can't brain this.

2) Max . Plays the role of 'the hot and mysterious guy'. Loves Charlie because she intrigued him., without any explanation. Just you intrigued me. I was intrigued by you. Just that. Right, another Edward Cullen in da house, yo.

sherlock, hot, mysterious
Dear Max, how to look mysterious.
This applies only to Sherlock Holmes. If you're not Sherlock, then forget the idea.

A stalker. Follows Charlie around because she needs to be in safe condition. Edward's detector: lock on.

I didn't buy their romance, at all. AT ALL. I was cringing the whole time they started uttering the cheesy, sappy love lines.

3) Aron. Charlie's childhood  best friend. He's a dumb boy. Charlie's forever bellboy. He seems nice at first, but the moment he goes into must-carry-the-girls'-bags mode, I slapped my head. That's not nice, it's called foolishly nice. You're not a slave, for God's sake.

4) Charlie's parents. I can't understand their logical thinking. I understand that parents want the best for their children and are ready to fend off any evil and harm.

What I didn't understand is, why you two (the parents) didn't run away with your children when the war started? Why would you want to stay behind at your home when the enemy is dropping off bombs and other explosives at your street? The freaking soldiers wouldn't be knocking at everyone's doors and ask permission if it's okay to blow you off or not.

The ending. I was laughing hard when I finished reading the book. I was checking the cover twice to make sure I wasn't reading Twilight.

Major spoiler alert! After the final fight with the queen (which involves Charlie and Queen Sabara standing still and some process of soul transferring. Bleghh. Boring.), Charlie suddenly glows and glitters and sparkles. Again, without any reasons or explanations. Lolwhut? A female Edward, all of a sudden? Seriously?

I fell asleep A LOT while reading this. I had to force myself to finish it. Torturous. It's just another book on clich├ęd teensy romance, in a dystopian-fantasy setting. With that being said, I'm not going to continue reading the rest of the books in the series.

Updated: Speaking of the setting, I'm confused. I felt like reading two kind of worlds in one world, if you get what I mean. Like, Ludania is cut in a half. Half of it is dystopian and the other half is medieval-fantasy-like (hint: Queen Sabara's magic). To my understanding, dystopian society is about a futuristic society governed by oppressive societal system. Futuristic = in the future. But then, all of these queen stuff felt like it is medieval. Medieval = Middle Ages, very old. Surely, those two terms are contradicting with each other? The setting doesn't make sense, imho.

I found this review on Goodreads that's totally spot on about everything in this book. She writes it better than me.

1/5 stars, obviously.
Au revoir.

P/S:  Gifs aren't mine. Credit goes to the makers. Tumblr is my resource center for all things fandom. 


  1. Lol! That is quite a rant! :D Maybe I won't start this one. I have enough series to finish up and begin as it is. Thanks for the review!

    Tressa @ Tressa's Wishful Endings

    1. I just didn't like it. Maybe that's just me. People tend to like books that I hate. You might like the book, though. If you want to give it a try, just put it in 'the less priority' category xD
      Thank you for the comment! :)


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