Pawn by Aimee Carter | BOOK REVIEW

Pawn by Aimee Carter
Publisher/Year: Harlequin TEEN November 26th 2013
Genre: Post-Apocalypse kinda dystopian
Series: The Blackcoat Rebellion Book 1 (AHH LOVE THE NAME)
Other Books From Author: The Goddess Test series

I’ve received this from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This in no way swayed my opinion, promise!

Amazon | Goodreads | @aimee_carter |


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.

Pawn is actually the first book in a new dystopian series by Aimee Carter, and it’s very much different from her Goddess series which I’m *frankly* not a big fan of. I was pleasantly surprised by how much fun I had reading this book! I brought it with me on holiday last winter, and by about 100+ pages in, I started REALLY ENJOYING myself. I got so absorbed that when told to get out of my cozy hotel room, I was literally like this:


I’m probably the 29752th person to compliment this book for its world-building, because Pawn‘s portrayal of post-apocalyptic North America was SO COOL. The country has restarted under dictatorship of the Hart family, and society works by a caste system. So what’s new? This caste system works by apparent meritocracy. At the age of 17, every citizen takes an aptitude test that sorts them from the rank I to VII, lowest to highest. Your rank determines your job, products you’re allowed to buy, where you live, etc. I was very impressed by how Aimee Carter took a concept in today’s society and extrapolated it to a highly dramatized, extremely flawed version, I WAS SOLD.

This book follows the story of Kitty, who is sorted as a III. She’s doomed to cleaning the sewage, and she feels at loss with her life… until… wait a second. WHAT?! I went into Pawn with zero expectations. I hadn’t even had the chance to read the synopsis. BAM.  Kitty has given up her identity to join the most powerful family in the country. And be the newest pawn in their devious game. DIDN’T SEE THAT COMING.

But if you’re careful—if you protect your pawns and they reach the other side of the board, do you know what happens then? Your pawn becomes a queen.

As Kitty learns to adapt to her new life, she begins to uncover the scabs and wounds of her people that Harts are trying so hard to mask. An uprising is on its way, mysteries crop up left and right, and if there’s one thing I get sucked into, it’s these underground-rebel thrillers. The plot was fast paced, the government was freaking creepy (like honestly), and every one habours a deep dark secret. There was never a dull moment in this book and I FLEW THROUGH IT in like, 5 seconds. It was so good!

Until the ending.

I mean. You have to be kidding right.

If Daxton’s revelation and that “catfight” with Augusta was meant to be climatic… I’m sorry. It was immature and juvenile and made me rethink about picking up the sequel.

I absolutely loved the side characters in this book. There is an almost-love-triangle in this book, but it didn’t bother me because the romance didn’t take on much role. I’m still Team Knox all the way, guys. The feels here are just… so… ugh!! Best partner-in-crime chemistry.  The “bad guys” are very well developed. They have depths and it’s not a clear cut case of good and evil. I felt so conflicted reading Pawn because while I hated how corrupt these people were, I sympathized the human emotions that drove them to commit whatever they did.

I loved her, but I have a duty to my country. We all do. And I will not allow us to return to that dark time. My grandson will not go through what I did. No one ever will again.

Pawn wasn’t flawless but it certainly was entertaining. The ending made me really mad!!! What do you think?


18 thoughts on “Pawn by Aimee Carter | BOOK REVIEW

  1. I’ve seen Pawn around but never really knew what it was about. It sounds really interesting. I love the whole dramatized idea of basing a dystopian society based upon your aptitude level. It’s really interesting. I will probably have to keep this in mind for when I want a dystopian read.

    • Aptitude tests are not uncommon in present day, in fact it is one of the most widely used criterion in the working world. I didn’t see much flaw in this system UNTIL I read Pawn and realized how many people are really falling through the cracks. ASDFGHJKL!!

  2. The system of dividing people into castes based on aptitude tests sounds like a mix of aspects from other dystopian books like The Selection & Divergent. While it doesn’t sound wholly original it still sounds good! I’ll be adding it to my TBR for sure =) Great review!!

    Amanda @ Born Bookish

    • Pawn certainly isn’t a 100% creative story. I’ve seen some similar concepts in other books, but the way this division system was executed in Pawn IS SO COOL. Those ranked I, deemed as too unworthy for society, are sent Elsewhere and when you find out where Elsewhere is… YOU’LL BE SCREAMING INTO A PILLOW. TRUST ME.

  3. I didn’t plan on reading this, because Kitty? Really? But also because I hated how Aimee ended The Goddess Test series – it was such a disappointment, that I can’t trust her not to disappoint me again! It sounds like Pawn suffers a similar fate, unfortunately. So despite the unique worldbuilding, I’m still not sold that I’d enjoy this.

    • UHM. UHH. YEAH. It’s hard to justify insta love. And here comes insta love triangle.

      Pawn, defend yourself.

      Haha ehh I enjoyed the Goddess Test series purely on a “I’ll read this so I have something to laugh about” basis, but Pawn is definitely a huge improvement!

  4. I quite enjoyed Pawn as well! I didn’t expect much because I hadn’t heard too many good things about her Goddess series but it wasn’t too bad. I didn’t really feel a connection to the characters though, the biggest asset was definitely the plot twists. Was kinda meh about the ending too!

    • Maybe it’s just me but the characters felt… Immature? They don’t behave their age. It’s like Augusta (a freaking grandmother) think on the same levels as my noisy little cousins do. HMM. SOMETHING UNSETTLING HERE. The ending was so stupid a facepalm just won’t do OMG. Otherwise, Pawn was still a quick fun read!

  5. Ohh I wasn’t going to pick this up but now I think I’ll give it a go, it sounds interesting and I quite like the idea of the caste system. I’ll have to keep an open mind about the ending though!

  6. I really really liked this one. As a dystopian it was not just one more of those and the world building was stunning! I really liked how the author didn’t hold any punches and went for some very disturbing stuff! I’m actualyl very curious to see what happens in the next book and I’m crossing my fingers that there won’t be a love triangle in it!

    • UMM THE DISTURBING STUFF WERE REALLY CREEPY. I remember turning to my sister and telling her about what happens in Elsewhere, out of context from the book, and disgust didn’t even begin to cover how we felt =/ I’m not sure how much I want to continue this series, given the ending, but I sense the rebellion will be coming back faster and stronger in the second book. WHICH MEANS COOL ACTION STUFF. I THINK I’M READY.

  7. Have had this one sitting on my shelf for a few weeks now, but still haven’t picked it up….Sorry to hear that the ending didn’t meet your standard, the way you describe the ending, does sound more like high school drama than anything else. I hope you enjoy the second book!


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