An in depth book review of Carve the Mark by Veronica Roth

It’s been recently published, so no spoilers. I’ll come back and update it in a few months with specifics for anyone who’s interested. Carve the Mark by Veronica Roth definitely earned a 5 out of 5 with me. I enjoyed the Divergent trilogy, but found the writing just okay. The ending of Allegiant I won’t bother getting into with this post because there’s just so much that could be said. The writing in Carve the Mark showed definite improvement. I wasn’t distracted from the story, it flowed cleanly between the different viewpoints.



Watching Akos’ development was so interesting. I particularly enjoyed his viewpoint in the beginning before I got to know Cyra. His story is awful and sad, yet he still works so hard. He’s stubborn but sweet. He is definitely not the bad boy that many YA books are so fond of. Akos really reminded me of Elias from An Ember in the Ashes. He builds strong walls around him, but once you break them down, he’s loyal to a fault. Once loyalty is given, he is behind you 100%. He’s understanding and sweet without being a pushover, which is another common problem in YA.


Her growth was one of my favorite things in the book. She suffers from some very real problems and challenges that she works so hard to overcome. First of all, her currentgift is so brutal. The amount of pain she feels from that, let alone all the emotional trauma she endures is horrific. And yet it’s so realistic. She spends day after day in bed before Akos is there to help her. She suffers from some pretty severe mental struggles as a result of her experiences and it was so cool to watch her overcome them. By the end, even after all she’s been through, she still manages to do what needs to be done.


Whoa, talk about a crazy currentgift. When he first uses it, you just start the grasp the implications, but by the end I was blown away. He was a great villian. Scary, manipulative, but with a weakness. Very realistic. It makes me feel so bad for Cyra, growing up with him. I can’t wait to see the implications of his gift in the next book.

Side characters of note:

I like Cisi a lot! So cute and what an amazing currentgift! Also, her and Isae could be really cute. I hope they develop into more in the next book. Poor Jorek, but sorry. She’s obviously not into you.
Sifa (Akos’ Mom) was such a complicated character. I don’t know how I feel about her other than she’s intriguing and I’m curious to see what her role is in the next book.


I was pleasantly surprised. All too frequently in young adult literature, the ending is easily seen from the beginning. This one actually surprised me a few times which I found very impressive. The decisions that people made were so logical, which was great. Near the beginning before Cyra and Akos get close, Akos makes a decision that doesn’t happen in a lot of YA books. And Cyra understands. There’s on ridiculous shock over this completely logical event. She’s hurt, but she understands. (I’ll clarify later on when more people have had a chance to read it.) The last few chapters as well, had particularly good plot twists that I did not see coming. The next book has big shoes to fill!


No insta-love! What a crazy idea that love develops over time through circumstances. No love-triangle! Shocking! The love in this story felt so real. Akos and Cyra bond through their trauma and pain. It’s not instantaneous. It doesn’t go from hate to love in one scene. It grows! And by the end Cyra is finally able to feel confident making decisions based on that love. I love the scene where they first kiss! So cute and awkward. Ahh definitely one of my new favorite couples!


A great read for teens and adults. The only concerns I noted for younger teens was the violence. There was a lot of it. Think Hunger Games. There’s an arena, people fight. Parents murdered in front of children, that type of thing. Writing is good. The cover art was so appropriate. I loved the significance of it. By the end I think that was one of my favorite parts of the universe that Veronica Roth created. A great read!

Buy it here!

What did you think of it? Comment below.


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