The Pledge by Kimberly Derting is hard to categorize as any one genre, other than to simply say it is made of awesome. Combining elements of dystopian, fantasy, and paranormal romance, Derting has concocted a futuristic twist on the fairy tale that is gripping, seductive, and wholly original.
As with her The Body Finder series, Derting’s writing is spectacular. She has a gift for bringing small moments, distinct emotions, and unique relationships to life on the page that just feels genuine. The Pledge is no exception, with a cast of characters that you will instantly connect with viscerally in some way. They elicit love, intrigue, anger. They are characters that will engage you actively as you continue reading.
Derting has also crafted a brilliant world, that is at once familiar and yet completely separate from our own. It’s a fantasy realm rooted in reality, which just makes it easier to get sucked into. She also makes a poignant statement about the power of words and language.
And while Derting wrote The Pledge to be read as a standalone, she always had sequels in mind — and luckily for us, her publisher Simon & Schuster has seen the light and agreed to publish two more books, completing the series as a trilogy. Readers weary of series will find no such fatigue here. Because while The Pledge ends as a complete story, it sets the stage for a world of new drama to unfold — and honestly, I can’t wait to return to this world.
The Pledge is in stores today. Here is the official synopsis:
Words are the most dangerous weapon of all.
In the violent country of Ludania, the classes are strictly divided by the language they speak. The smallest transgression, like looking a member of a higher class in the eye while they are speaking their native tongue, results in immediate execution. Seventeen-year-old Charlaina has always been able to understand the languages of all classes, and she’s spent her life trying to hide her secret. The only place she can really be free is the drug-fueled underground clubs where people go to shake off the oppressive rules of the world they live in. It’s there that she meets a beautiful and mysterious boy named Max who speaks a language she’s never heard before … and her secret is almost exposed.
Charlie is intensely attracted to Max, even though she can’t be sure where his real loyalties lie. As the emergency drills give way to real crisis and the violence escalates, it becomes clear that Charlie is the key to something much bigger: her country’s only chance for freedom from the terrible power of a deadly regime.