Monday, June 15, 2020

Chosen Ones by Veronica Roth

A decade ago near Chicago, five teenagers defeated the otherworldly enemy known as the Dark One, whose reign of terror brought widespread destruction and death. The seemingly un-extraordinary teens—Sloane, Matt, Ines, Albie, and Esther—had been brought together by a clandestine government agency because one of them was fated to be the “Chosen One,” prophesized to save the world. With the goal achieved, humankind celebrated the victors and began to mourn their lost loved ones.

Ten years later, though the champions remain celebrities, the world has moved forward and a whole, younger generation doesn’t seem to recall the days of endless fear. But Sloane remembers. It’s impossible for her to forget when the paparazzi haunt her every step just as the Dark One still haunts her dreams. Unlike everyone else, she hasn’t moved on; she’s adrift—no direction, no goals, no purpose. On the eve of the Ten Year Celebration of Peace, a new trauma hits the Chosen: the death of one of their own. And when they gather for the funeral at the enshrined site of their triumph, they discover to their horror that the Dark One’s reign never really ended.

TITLE: Chosen Ones (The Chosen Ones, #1)
AUTHOR: Veronica Roth
PUBLISHER: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
GENRE: Fantasy
FORMAT: Print/Hard Copy
PAGES: 432

“Nobody ever prepared me for what came after. They just assumed I would never find out.”

Chosen Ones by Veronica Roth is set 10 years in the future after the big bad is conquered and the first part, Part One, focuses primarily on what happens to the Chosen Ones after. The lasting effects of being part of a group that saved the lives of millions from evil; handpicked by the government, trained and ultimately defeating the Dark One has left its mark on those that were ‘Chosen’. In Part One, we meet the Chosen Ones, Sloane, Albie, Esther, Matt, and Ines, all who suffer from various forms of PTSD, paparazzi stalking, drug & alcohol issues and a general lack of purpose. They all cope with the trauma that battling the Dark One induced in different ways. When the unthinkable happens, it brings us to Part two where they find they are still the Chosen Ones and must again defeat a big bad.

The story, told in three parts and intersected with various newspaper articles, top secret memos and logs is a bit of a slow start as we get to know the characters while Ms. Roth sets the stage and builds a fascinating world of parallel universes, really bad dudes and their evil minions. It really picks up momentum in part two and became a page turner as the new Dark One made an appearance and the action kicked in full speed ahead. As a big fan of all Veronica Roth’s work, I expected nothing less from her and although this is on a different level completely from her other books, I recognized her writing in the ‘kick in the gut’ plot twists and it was a bit like coming home! I thoroughly enjoyed this and I’m looking forward to what’s next in the series!

A big thank you to Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and Veronica Roth for the print copy of Chosen Ones and NetGalley for the DRC

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