Author: Rachel Van Dyken
Published: April 14th 2013
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Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble
*A review copy was provided in exchange for an honest review*
For Tracey Rooks, life with her grandparents on a Wyoming farm has always been simple. But after her grandmother's death, Tracey is all her grandfather has. So when Eagle Elite University announces its annual scholarship lottery, Tracey jumps at the opportunity to secure their future and enters. She isn't expecting much-but then she wins. And life as she knows it will never be same . . .
The students at Eagle Elite are unlike any she's ever met . . . and they refuse to make things easy for her. There's Nixon, gorgeous, irresistible, and leader of a group that everyone fears: The Elect. Their rules are simple. 1. Do not touch The Elect. 2. Do not look at The Elect. 3. Do not speak to The Elect. No matter how hard she tries to stay away, The Elect are always around her and it isn't long until she finds out the reason why they keep their friends close and their enemies even closer. She just didn't realize she was the enemy -- until it was too late.
When I met Nixon I had no idea what life had in store for me. In my wildest dreams, I could have never imagined this.
The story. So we have this weird, weird school where all the influential kids attend and Tracey, being a cow-loving farm girl (seriously, she loved her cows more than herself) with a scolarship, wasn't an insider. She was an outsider intruding in and it did not suit well for the Elite. The four guys, along with Nixon--Tracey's love interest--run the school and organize everything: lunch schedules, give elevator passes, choose who's at the top of the food chain in the school etc. They are the Elect. They also bully people both physically and emotionally. Also, Nixon owns the school and if a teacher sees bullying, they don't even blink an eye. 'Hello Mr. Nixon' is all they say, smile and walk away.
My thoughts. Ok, so here's the thing. I'm not going to lie, I'm tired of the same old formula where the main characters have dark pasts and they need this other half who completes them and gives a meaning to their lives and helps one surpass one's past etc. Does it happen in life? I believe so, but it's getting tiresome. Mad props for Rachel for trying to pull off something different. However, sadly this isn't the only aspect I'm looking for in books, I need more. The whole plot was just plain confusing. The first half of it on my part was spent on thoughts like 'wtf is going on' and 'stand the eff up for yourself' and the latter half was where the first part was explained, but it wasn't enough of an explanation for me.
The MC.. Where do I even start with her? She was a clutz who didn't stand up for herself. When she tried, she got to starr in this huge bullying scheme where she was drugged, labeled as a slut, didn't get to eat, got thrown with eggs and sugar water etc. Oh, and she cried about every single thing. In public, by the way. I don't get why she didn't leave the school. You're bullied that heavily in college. The whole time she had a crush on the guy who ran the school and was the head of the Elect who bullied her. He was bullying her to supposedly protect her and as it turned out later on, he had every reason to protect her. Does it make his actions okay? Most definitely not! Even though when the whole twist came in to the picture, it turned out that Nixon loves this girl, but I mean.. wtf? Look, the premise was truly intriguing and awesome, the way it was delivered lacked believability.
The saddest thing is that I actually want to read the sequel because I want to know what happens next regarding the ending. How messed up is that? I am not, in fact, a fan of spoilery reviews, but sometimes they pay off so I hope that there will be spoiler-ish reviews on Goodreads so I can read them and find out what happens without actually purchasing the book. I hate writing these negative reviews and I understand what could appeal to readers in Elite, but as much as it pains me to say this, I wasn't happy while reading this and I think there are better books out there by this author to be discovered beforehand.
Oh, just a little note here at the end: the teaser for the second book introduces a lovely love triangle of Nixon, Tracey and Nixon's best friend. Are. You. Kidding. Me. I think you get my frustration..