Elle Todd

The Elect

The Elect
Author:
Published: December 9, 2013
“An accidental encounter with an impossible flame leads Allison Noble down a path of self-discovery…”

Reviewed by Awesome Indies
October 2, 2014

The Elect follows high school student Allison through her discovery of supernatural powers she never imagined existed, let alone that she possessed. A riveting YA read, this novel delivers where so many fall short. The main character isn’t whiny or weak, nor is she dependent on her male interest. This is a fast, fun and completely mesmerizing read that I couldn’t put down. As soon as I’m done reading this, I’m going to go buy book two!

The formatting and design of The Elect is professional and pristine. I saw only one editing error in the entire book (Allison’s mother puts a black “back” on her bed instead of a black “bag”) but it was so minor it only stood out in contrast to the lack of problems with the editing overall.

The plot flows smoothly, paced to engage and draw the reader in. At the end, it really picks up steam and I can’t imagine how anyone could put it down during the last quarter without finishing.

I thoroughly enjoyed the characterizations. The use of high school students tends to lend itself to stereotypes and while The Elect certainly had the popular crowd and the creepy dude, they were fleshed out and never reduced to place holders. The cast of this novel is quite broad and yet each remained distinct in personality and motivation.

The only reason this isn’t a full 5 stars is because I found Delaney’s announcement that she was a member of The Elect to be forced. If she were a part of a secret society, she would probably be a little less insistent on exposing someone else’s secrets. Her behavior prior to her disclosure just didn’t match up with what someone in her supposed position would do. Other than that, this was a flawless book and I highly recommend it.

The Vanguard

The Vanguard
Category:
Author:
Published: December 16, 2013
She knows what it means to be Elect. The Vanguard are an entirely different breed…

Reviewed  

Fraught with tension and discovery

Vanguard is the followup novel to Elle Todd’s The Elect.  This book continues to follow Alison through her discovery of her powers and the ramifications they hold for both The Elect and The Vanguard.  Throughout this book, the twists and revelations keep coming.  This is a fast and satisfying read with no errors in formatting or editing that i could detect.

In Vanguard, Todd has accomplished something even the most talented authors often stumble over.  How do you write a book where the main character is isolated and imprisoned during the majority of the narrative?  How do you do this and keep the reader interested and invested?  And even more difficult, how do you do this without turning it into an exercise in navel gazing.  Because the characters are so well drawn, the reader is never bored.  Every interaction is fraught with tension and discovery.
My only complaint about the book is that I would like to see Alison be nicer to Ryan.  It’s getting difficult to believe he’s still willing to sustain on nothing more than breadcrumbs.  A moment of weakness/vulnerability on her part (other than physical) would have been satisfying, but I also understand why she couldn’t let her guard down.  Because of this I rate Vanguard 4.5 stars