This review is spoiler free!!
This book finally got me out of my dystopian funk!! I love dystopian - it's definitely my favorite genre but for the past month I've just felt meh about every dystopian I've picked up until I just stopped picking them up. But this one was sitting in my "currently reading" shelf for too long so I had to give it a go. And it was really good! Like so good that I had to immediately buy the rest of the series the second I finished this.
Okay, so first, the bad: This book is pretty cliched. There's all the common plot points: a super special girl (who even has purple eyes because of course); the parents who were murdered when she was young; the perfect boyfriend who she's known forever; the super hot guy who she feels a spark with; the evil government that might not be so evil after all; and the good government that might not be so good after all. It's all there. But somehow, I just didn't mind. The story was still just so damn enjoyable!
So the world got pretty messed up by some big nuclear thing and as a result, a bunch of people now have "Talents," which basically means they have superpowers. There's a bunch of different types and she details each. Talia can manipulate people's minds and also has telekinsis and telepathy. She's super powerful. She's in her last year at school which means she's assigned to a Hunting team on a trial basis. If she does good, she's in. She has to become a Hunter so that she can get revenge on the guy who killed her parents - well, the guy who ordered it at least - the leader of the rebel government. The rebel government doesn't trust Talents and is against mandotory testing of children to determine who might be Talented.
I really liked Talia. Sure, she's super powerful and "special," but she's also relatable. She has the same emotions as any other girl and that's what really made this book so great. It's less about the dystopian world and more about her growing up, dealing with betrayal, trying to figure out the kind of person she wants to be.