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A.C. Gaughen
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Katharine McGee
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Stephen King
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The Testing

The Testing - Joelle Charbonneau I started reading this one and Veronica Roth's Divergent at the same time and must admit I had my reservations about it as both had very similar Hunger Games-esque plot and had my doubts about both of them. and was very pleasantly surprised on how much I loved The Testing when it turns out after half way through Divergent in the same genre I didn't really like it much. But I'll put more on that when I get round to my Divergent review.The Testing was surprisingly awesome. Bit of a slow start but it really builds up to a great story. Yes, it does follow a bit of a YA Dystopia cliche list - world destroyed, new factions with certain purposes, test for the kids to prove themselves, tacked on romance, over bearing watching everything government with hidden agendas.But none of that really seems to matter as it was such a good story. True it doesn't have the shut in feeling of violence that HGs did, but it does have some particularly good shocking moments, especially once the Fourth test gets going. Basic plot of the novel is when students graduate high school they have the potential to be chosen for Testing to determine whether they make it to the University to study to become one of the country's leaders. The testing starts of pretty benign then get start to get worse and the tension starts to build. There was some fantastic world building in this story, explaining a lot of history and background which I did like to see.The characters are interesting, the romance side of things isn't the main focus of the male and female lead. its not insta-love. Which is another big plus. The two already know each other and build something together gradually. Different things keep cropping up throwing a spanner into what we think we already know is going on. Especially towards the end of the story. All in all a fantastic book and I look forward to the next in the series. Thank you Netgalley for the ARC.