The_Revealed-Jessica_HickamReviewed by Carrie Ardoin

I do enjoy it when a young adult book has a well executed kidnapping in the plot. That probably makes me sound sadistic, but what I mean is it’s hard to find one where the kidnapping itself doesn’t take over the whole plot of the book. The difference with The Revealed is that the victim knew her kidnapping was coming. This is in large part why I decided to read this book. How can you hide from something and someone that you know is coming, but don’t have any idea how to stop?

Unfortunately, the actual kidnapping scene in this book was anticlimactic, and so many other negative issues overshadowed the plot that I barely got through to the end.

The main character, Lily Atwood is the eighteen year old daughter of a presidential candidate. The elections are the first that are scheduled to happen since a huge war changed the world several years ago. (I’m not trying to be vague on purpose–this is literally all the information the book gives on why this is supposed to be set in a dystopian America.) While the country is on the verge of electing a new leader, the world is also worried because eighteen year olds have been disappearing without a trace, and those to blame are called The Revealed.

The common people don’t know much about The Revealed–just that they seem to have secret powers and are able to do whatever they want to do without anyone being able to stop them. Since Lily turned eighteen, she has been under house arrest, her parents’ attempt to keep her from being the next one kidnapped. But that doesn’t stop the threatening notes she receives, and Lily basically does everything she can to defy her parents’ wishes–including becoming involved with the son of the opposing presidential candidate, Kai Westerfield.

Right from the beginning, Lily Atwood rubbed me the wrong way. Maybe it’s because I’m older and a parent myself, but I found her to be very whiny and immature. After all, her parents, while not the warmest, are just doing what they can to keep her safe. But Lily time and time again escapes the house and puts herself in harm’s way, and The Revealed are not the only ones she has to worry about hurting her. With a highly emotional election about to happen, isn’t it not the smartest idea for the daughter of a candidate to be out in public, unprotected?

What actually irritated me the most about this book was the so-called romance between Lily and Kai. Lily mentions that she and Kai have known each other since childhood, but once they got to high school he ignored her existence. However, once he comes back into her life, only one short year after high school, she immediately falls for him. As in, she is literally saying, “I hate him. I’ve never hated anyone more in my life.” in one chapter, and in the next, “I can’t stop thinking about Kai.” It’s not exactly insta-love since they have known each other for so long, but the feeling of an underdeveloped, out of nowhere relationship is there anyway.

I really only kept reading because I wanted to find out what The Revealed were all about and why they were doing the kidnappings. I suppose what I found out was supposed to be a shocking twist, but it felt forced to me. I can’t share too much because I don’t want to spoil the book, but I will say that the X-Men comparisons I have seen in other reviews seem like a very, very far reach.

When the sort of love triangle got wedged in as well, I knew this book wasn’t going to get a good rating from me. It felt as if the author was trying to cram in as many YA stereotypes as she could into one plot without it falling apart. Well, it didn’t fall apart…but it didn’t make for very good reading, at least for this no longer young adult.

Rating: ★★☆☆☆ 

Carrie runs the blog Sweet Southern Home, and is a stay at home wife and mom to one little boy. When she’s not reading, she’s usually watching Netflix with her husband, playing outside with her son, or baking. Her family would describe her as sometimes annoyingly sarcastic, but mostly lovable. 

Review copy was provided free of any obligation by SparkPress. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.