Pawn by Aimée Carter - Gritty and Awesome!

Pawn  - Aimee Carter

Pawn by Aimée Carter is the first book in a new dystopian series that impressed me with its focus on clever plotting in a genre that is a bit overburdened at this point. So many YA dystopians have been focusing heavily on romance and love triangles, so I was freaking thrilled that Pawn dug in, showed its dark side, and didn’t get side-tracked. I am very excited to see where this series goes, since I haven’t read a good actual rebellion series in a while!

Note: I received Pawn from Harlequin in exchange for an honest review. I read an ARC and so some things might be different in the final version!


Pawn by Aimée Carter (The Blackcoat Rebellion #1)
Published by Harlequin Teen on Nov. 26th, 2013
Genres: DystopiaYA 
Length: 352 pages
How I got my copy: Publisher
IndieBound - Book Depository - Goodreads
Purchases made support this blog 


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 has a bit of a prince and the pauper type premise, but pulls off a unique and interesting plot despite a fairly typical dystopian setting.
  • Did I mention how much I loved the plot? I love being able to sit back after finishing a book and really process the ending. I didn’t see twists coming until right before they happened (if then!) and I really enjoyed the flow of Pawn; it just seemed to work.
  • Crazy fact: boys and girls can be friends (even in YA) without falling in love! It’s true and Pawn proves it <3.
  • You might get worried, but I can assure you Pawn does not have a love triangle. Kitty really does love her boyfriend of years and childhood sweetheart and she proves it through her commitment despite really crazy situations.
  • Pawn has lined up so much potential for The Blackcoat Rebellion series. I’m not sure where the second book will go with it, but I’m really freaking excited to find out!


  •  There were a couple of times when characters seemed to do things that didn’t really make sense. There is a fine balance between showing another side of a character and bringing in something out of left field so that it doesn’t feel natural. Pawn didn’t quite pull off all the character revelations.
  • Kitty has some really flaky emotions surrounding one particular thing which I can’t tell you. But it kind of annoyed me that she would vow to do something and then not do it and then vow to do it again. Just make up your mind!
  • Kitty’s inner dialogue also got a bit annoying. Not in a “I want to punch this girl” kind of way, just in a “Kitty, I know you’re stressed, but please just be decisive” kind of way. I empathized with her, but she was that friend who discussed her dinner options far too long ya know?


Pawn had a couple of slip-ups, but was otherwise a phenomenal start to a darker kind of dystopian series. It doesn’t pull punches, proving early on just how far the corrupt government is willing to go, and just how little the ruling family cares about their people. Pawn went in directions that I didn’t expect and I’m so happy to still be surprised in a genre that I’ve read a lot of over the past couple of years. Why can’t Captive come out sooner??