Books, Reviews

World of Words Wednesday – Book Review: The Testing by Joelle Charbonneau and Wednesday Memes

by Joelle Charbonneau
Hardcover, 336 pages
Expected publication: June 4th 2013 by Houghton Mifflin Books for Children
Blurb: 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.

My thoughts: I have to yet read ‘The Hunger Games’ (yes, really, I do). I got the books during the initial craze and had just started when I had to put the book aside for some reason – then ‘The Hunger Games’ movie came out and I watched it – the book stayed unread though. 
When I got the opportunity to read and review this ARC, I definitely wanted to try it out and am glad I did – this is a great read! Fans of ‘The Hunger Games’ who hunger for more will love this new series as well (and I am saying this based on the movie seen)
The characters themselves are believable – in dystopian settings – and though I am not sure that I actually found many of them likeable, I found that I enjoyed reading about each of them – that makes this story even more effective.  The characters and the world they live in are both well developed. The storyline is fast-paced, with the right balance of action and some lighter moments to keep the reader hooked onto it from page one until the very end – I read it within a dayJ.  Now, I am eagerly looking forward to the next in this series. 
I wanted to keep the review as spoiler-free as possible so that ends my review – including the blurb above as well as a link – click on the banner included in this post –  to the free-prequel of the book for all of you who want to check it out. The book will be out June 4th and I will definitely add the physical copy to my library then (and to be honest, I will not call myself a YA dystopian fan, just love a great read in any genre).

Rating: A

Disclaimer:Thank you to NetGalley for sending me a digital review copy of the book. I was not compensated for my review. My thoughts on this book were in no way influenced by the author or publicist. They are my personal opinions formed when I read this book.
Wednesday Memes:
For 3WW(crave, putrid, shudder) ,dVerse Open Link Tuesday, imaginary gardens with real toads (Apr 23 – Shakespeare’s birthday)


 Lillies or Weeds
Look deep inside lest appearances deceive
Crave not for hearts putrid
I shudder to think what they did
For the sweetest things turn sourest by their deeds.

For Wondrous Words Wednesday, I had many words saved over the past few weeks, but for today, here are two of them while I go on a word-hunt on my machine for the others:

  • pawky –    Having or showing a sly sense of humor;  Shrewd.
  • derringdo – daring action : daring


For ABC Wednesday‘s letter O, I catch up on my authors I missed the past few weeks – too many weeks in fact and end with O…
  • J
    • Shirley Jackson
      – The Lottery – this short story made me fall in love with Jackson’s writing.  I have been planning to read more – starting with ‘The Haunting of Hill House’.
    • Madhur Jaffrey – Love her cookbooks!
  • K
    Sue Monk Kidd
    ‘The Secret Life of Bees’ endeared me to this writer
  • L
    • Jhumpa Lahiri – I loved her short story collections, enjoyed her novel, and look forward to reading more from her.
    • Harper Lee – She has only one published novel to her name but that is among my favorites – ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ will remain among my top favorites forever.
  • M
    •  Sudha Murthy –  Sudha Murthy’s simple, easy to understand story telling is strongly visible in her writing but the simple writing does not take away anything from the beauty and the message of the stories she says.  My reviews of some of the books I have read are here.
    • Margaret Mitchell  – 
      Again, ‘Gone With the Wind’ is one of my favorite books and I
      recall sitting down in front of the TV with the book when I watched the movie for the first time. Rhett Butler (in the book and on screen) is among my all-time favorite heroes.
    • Stephanie Meyer – ‘The Twilight Series’ first introduced me to the world of YA reading and also introduced many people to reading itself, and for that, I thank her!
  • N
    Anita Nair – I first read her collection novel ‘Ladies Coupe’ and found myself engrossed in it – it brought back memories of travelling by train and the stories of each of the ladies resonated with me as I identified in them people I have actually heard or read about, and in some cases, know too. I then read ‘Lilac House’ more recently and my review of that book is here. Read an interview with her here.
  • And for this week’s letter, O, I find myself not knowing anyone already, but I did discover – Joyce Carol Oates – and there are so many accomplishments she had in the literary world – I am going to pick up one of her books and read it soon – planning to start with ‘them’.

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