Carve The Mark (Carve The Mark #1) by Veronica Roth
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Goodreads Summary: 
On a planet where violence and vengeance rule, in a galaxy where some are favored by fate, everyone develops a currentgift, a unique power meant to shape the future. While most benefit from their currentgifts, Akos and Cyra do not—their gifts make them vulnerable to others’ control. Can they reclaim their gifts, their fates, and their lives, and reset the balance of power in this world?

Cyra is the sister of the brutal tyrant who rules the Shotet people. Cyra’s currentgift gives her pain and power—something her brother exploits, using her to torture his enemies. But Cyra is much more than just a blade in her brother’s hand: she is resilient, quick on her feet, and smarter than he knows.

Akos is from the peace-loving nation of Thuvhe, and his loyalty to his family is limitless. Though protected by his unusual currentgift, once Akos and his brother are captured by enemy Shotet soldiers, Akos is desperate to get his brother out alive—no matter what the cost. When Akos is thrust into Cyra’s world, the enmity between their countries and families seems insurmountable. They must decide to help each other to survive—or to destroy one another.

Fans of Star Wars and Divergent will revel in internationally bestselling author Veronica Roth’s stunning new science-fiction fantasy series.
Rating: 4.5 Stars
Set in a different universe, Carve the Mark tells the tale of Akos Kereseth, a fate favoured Thuvhesit farmer's son and Cyra Noavek, sister of the tyrant Ryzek Noavek of Shotet. Two opposite worlds on two faces of the same plant come crashing together when Ryzek kidnaps Akos and his brother.

I expected more from this book, and perhaps my assumptions were unfair. Carve the Mark took a lot of getting used to; the world is so different from ours, and at first all the references to items of their world are only confusing. The new information seemed to stop for a bit, then start again, a slower trickle which is how it should be. Facts were cleverly repeated many times to ensure readers would remember it.

Cyra's currentgift causes her pain and allows her to inflict in on others. Her brother uses her as a weapon and torture tool. I like how currentgifts can change, evolve as the person does and they have a direct connection to their owners' personality. Akos's gift's reasoning is yet to be revealed, but I'm curious nonetheless. The second half of the book fared a lot better than the first because it contained much more action, plan devising and conflicting matters.

The introduction is conducted poorly, but Carve the Mark is very enjoyable once you've figured out what's happening and what these terms mean. And if in doubt there is a glossary provided at the back of the book. These characters and their 'sealed fates' only make the story more interesting. I was able to predict part of one major event, due to clues hidden in the first chapters. Science fiction, advanced technology, different beliefs and environments... Carve the mark.
Purchase Location: ~I received a copy from HarperCollins NZ and willingly reviewed it~
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Recommended for: Fans of sci-fi.