Author: Aimee Carter
Series: The Blackcoat Rebellion #1
Genre: Young Adult, Romance, Fantasy, Dystopian
Release Date: November 26, 2013
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
For Kitty Doe, it seems like an easy choice. She can either spend her life as a III in misery, looked down upon by the higher ranks and forced to leave the people she loves, or she can become a VII and join the most powerful family in the country.
If she says yes, Kitty will be Masked – surgically transformed into Lila Hart, the Prime Minister’s niece, who died under mysterious circumstances. As a member of the Hart family, she will be famous. She will be adored. And for the first time, she will matter.
There’s only one catch. She must also stop the rebellion that Lila secretly fostered, the same one that got her killed and one Kitty believes in. Faced with threats, conspiracies and a life that’s not her own, she must decide which path to choose—and learn how to become more than a pawn in a twisted game she’s only beginning to understand.
First Sentence: Risking my life to steal an orange was a stupid thing to do, but today of all days, I didn’t care about the consequences.
I received a copy of the book from the publisher in exchange for a honest review. All opinions are my own and I was not compensated for this review.
I first heard all about Pawn when the cover was revealed. I thought it was a cool cover – that pawn chess piece on the top right corner of the cover certainly caught my attention because it matched the title of the book very well without being cheesy. (Is it bad to admit that I had no idea what the book was about, but I knew that I just had to read Pawn because its cover is gorgeous?) However, I didn’t know how well the cover of Pawn fit the actual book until I read the actual book though; I have to give major kudos to the cover designers – they certainly did everything right. (The chess piece! The eye color! The number III! It’s just perfect!)
Pawn is one of the better dystopians out there. Yes, it has that typical dystopian storyline of the main character finding out that oh my goodness – the government is corrupt after all! (I can name all the dystopians on the top of my head that basically revolves around the oh my god, the government is corrupt, we have to do something! idea.) However, Pawn stood out from all the other dystopians out there simply because of the Harts.
Seconds ticked by, and my heart pounded as I waited for her to say something. Maybe I was nothing more than a pawn to her, a nameless piece in whatever twisted game she was playing, but she had to acknowledge me eventually. (ARC 84)
The Hart family, aka the family in charge of the newly-changed America in Pawn, is crazy. Crazy I tell you, crazy. Their family is full of drama – poor me couldn’t even catch a breather while reading Pawn. I was (not so secretly) reading it during class because I just couldn’t put it down. Twists and turns revolving around the Hart family constantly gets thrown at you throughout the book whether you’re prepared for it or not. I mean, we’re talking about a family that’s constantly plotting on how to kill each other, a family that constantly lies to each other, and a family that’s so delusional that they would do anything to get what they want in the end. I am so lucky that I’m not born into the Hart family. There’s literally never a dull moment in Pawn just because of the Hart family.
Kitty was a strong character. At first, I really didn’t like her because all the things she did seems so rash, but as I read on and as she grew as a character, I began to like her more and more. I loved watching Kitty grow stronger and realize what she, herself, wanted when she’s surrounded by people constantly demanding different things from her. I loved watching her doing something good out of this mess, to realize that there must be change, to grow an actual backbone.
As we wound our way through the corridors, the crowd’s cheers didn’t fade, and I clung to them as if they were my lifeline. These were people who knew what it felt like to be considered less than someone else. They understood, and they wanted change as badly as I did. (ARC 221)
Certain moments in Pawn had me thinking oh no, a love triangle! Thank goodness that was only a false alarm. Benjy, the guy who is already Kitty’s boyfriend in the beginning of Pawn, is Kitty’s one and only love interest despite what people might think while reading Pawn. Do I like Benjy? As of now, I can’t really say. What I can say, however, is that he rubbed me the wrong way in the beginning of the book. I mean, I know why he asked that of Kitty, but on the other hand, I don’t like the fact that he asked her for it.
Despite Pawn‘s positive sides, I did find a negative side to it though, including a huge plot hole that kept on glaring at me throughout the book.
[SMALL] SPOILER: Kitty is unique because she’s one of the very, very, very few people who share the same eye color as Lila Hart, the Prime Minister’s neice. That’s why Daxton, the Prime Minister, thinks Kitty will make the perfect pawn: because “someone” killed Lila and they needed someone to replace Lila that has Lila’s unique eye color. They decided to use Kitty as a replacement of Lila because of their shared unique eye color. The Harts “masked” (another word for intense plastic surgery) Kitty to look like Lila, but they, of course, don’t have to do anything about the eye color because Kitty naturally has the same eye color as Lila. However, several times throughout the book, people around Kitty hinted that she was very important and nearly impossible to replace because of her unique eye color, leading me to think that the Harts can’t change her eye color. Here’s the thing though: if they can do intense plastic surgery (the Harts changed Kitty’s entire skin color, they changed her height, they changed her face structure, they even changed her boobs) with their kind of advanced technology, how can eye contacts not have existed?
If you love your dystopians with a good dose of drama to keep you entertained, then Pawn is definitely the book for you. In fact, I’ll recommend Pawn to fans of Pretty Little Liars who would love a good mix of dystopian in their books. With a book like Pawn, you would never be bored.
P.S. I’m glad Pawn is not titled Masked anymore. Pawn suits this book a lot better than Masked does.