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Independent Study (The Testing Trilogy)

Independent Study (The Testing Trilogy) [Kindle Edition]

Joelle Charbonneau
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Product Description

A New-York-Times bestseller, the follow-up to The Testing has Hunger Games fans buzzing… For the attention of candidate Malencia Vale. Congratulations. You have passed The Testing. You have won a place at our prestigious university. After six months of preliminary classes, you will sit an examination. The results will be used to assign you to an area of study appropriate to your talents. The United Commonwealth urges you to consider your answers carefully during this examination. Wrong answers will be penalised. "I galloped through this excellent read; I was in suspense the whole time." Charlaine Harris, author of the True Blood novels.

About the Author

Ever since she can remember, Joelle has loved telling stories. As she grew up, she started performing those stories on the stage. Joelle still sings professionally, but most of her time is spent with her husband and son while dreaming up new stories.

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More About the Author

Joelle Charbonneau is a storyteller at heart. She has performed in a variety of operas, musical theatre and children's theatre productions across the Chicagoland area. In addition to her stage work, Joelle has also performed with several bands and worked as a solo performer.

While Joelle is happy to perform for an audience, she is equally delighted to teach private voice lessons and use her experience from the stage to create compelling characters in her mysteries. Her first comic mystery, Skating Around The Law, will hit shelves under the St. Martin's Minotaur imprint on Sept. 28th, 2010. To learn more, visit Joelle at her website:

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Frustrating 8 April 2014
By Helen
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I want to like this book a lot more than I do. The main character, Cia, is feisty and interesting. The society which Charbonneau established in the first book is explored further and there's still a large element of excitement and danger despite the fact that the most obviously life threatening element of her studies - the actual testing in book one - is over. Some of the antagonistically challenged characters who seem determined to trip Cia up and get her kicked out (or worse) from the university are a little flat, but that's okay. I don't mind that they retain an element of shady mystery. The way Cia struggles with her returning memories is well put together and, overall, the book is well written for this kind of YA genre based story.

However, the one big issue I had with the first book is exacerbated even further here. Okay, so students get killed during the Testing. In fact, lots of students get killed during the Testing. And then the government or education board or Dr. Barnes or whoever wipe the survivors' memories so no-one cops it. But what is never ever explained is WHY. Come on! These are the country's best and brightest. Why kill them? Why kill so many of them? Why make it so no-one remembers? The entire series is built around this premise and yet it's completely, irrationally illogical. There's no good reason why those who fail shouldn't just be sent home to hand their heads in shame. There's no reason to murder them. None. And when the entire plotline hinges on the fact that Cia and the rebels are trying to stop these killings from happening - but it's impossible to suspend your disbelief that they are actually happening - then the whole book fall flat.

It annoys me. This series has so much promise. But there needs to be rational motivation for those in charge to act like psychos or it just doesn't work...
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A really good sequel 7 April 2014
By Macey89 TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
In the follow up to ‘The Testing’, Cia has made it to the University. Having taken the exams that will determine the future of their careers in the United Commonwealth, Cia and the other successful testing candidates now have a whole new set of challenges to face.

Cia’s memories of her first Testing have been erased, but as she prepares for her initiation into her class, disturbing flashbacks make her question the University and all it stands for. With her dreams full of suspicions about what happens to students that fail to live up to the University idea of its ideal candidate, she is thrown into a dizzying round of intense studying, ruthless initiation processes and cut-throat competition.

When she learns about a group of rebels working against the government officials in charge of the University, Cia has to choose whether to risk her life, and the lives of the people that she cares about, by joining their cause. But who can she trust? And who is doing everything they can to make sure she’ll fail?

When a series gets off to such a strong start, I’ve often found that I’m a little disappointed in the sequel. Here, the author manages to recreate the same world with just as much tension and suspense. Yes, the pace is a little slower and events don’t take quite such as deadly a turn as in The Testing, but that makes the things that do happen even more shocking. It does also suffer a little bit from middle book syndrome – where we’re clearly building up to a larger storyline but we have to wait until the final instalment for the main action to kick off.

Despite this though, it still gets a 4/5 from me. I actually like the way that this novel is set against an academic background, although still in a dystopian world.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another great book, in a fantastic series!! 2 April 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Fantastic. I've literally just finished reading the last page of this great piece of literary genius. If you loved the first book you'll love this one just the same.

Now this book isn't as fast paced and violent as the first book, but that by no means makes this book worse. This book has an underlying message of who can you trust, deception, a cloak and dagger feeling to it. It may not be full throttle all the way, filled with action and excitement. It's a book of mystery and wonder. What is really going on? Who can you trust? Does Cia have what it takes to succeed in her mission? What actually is her mission?

Basically this book follows on six months after the testing. Cia is sitting the early studies exam to see if she can gain entry into the classes of the university. Following on from this she meets new classmates and struggles to keep up with the huge workload she has.
The story really follows her struggles to remember what happened in the testing and how she can stop the testing from ever happening again. This book is filled with twists and turns and excitement and wonder and unanswered questions. It is as good as the first book, building on the good foundation that it built. It may not be as action packed and fast paced but it is no slouch either and ekes you wondering and on the edge of your seat throughout. Characters we came to like or maybe not like return in this book, but there is also the addition of new characters into the story that really help keep it fresh and enjoyable.

This book has set it up for a heart racing, emotion jolting, finger biting, wonder filled third book. One that shouldn't be missed. If you loved the first book you'll love this. Great series. Give it a read. You won't regret it.

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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Really good series and this is a great second book
Published 1 day ago by Jeremy p
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great follow up
Published 5 days ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 down, not out
5 days of sneaking all possible time, and still hooked with a book to go. Cons, leave that to others. One writer I am putting in my favourites list.
Published 6 days ago by zed
5.0 out of 5 stars amazing!
If you like books like divergent, hunger games, or matched you'll love this trilogy. Everyone's go to love a bit of rebellion
Published 17 days ago by Megan
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome but...
I absolutely loved it! The only thing I don't like is the fact that it ends on a cliff hanger! It's a pretty cool book though, almost as good as the first one but not quite. Read more
Published 20 days ago by Emily Lane
5.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant second book.
Great middle section to this trilogy. Really well written and fast paced. Why do characters in these types of books all have weird names though?! Read more
Published 1 month ago by Kerry Mackay
5.0 out of 5 stars Great
Great book
Published 1 month ago by Ciarán O'Toole (Male 14)
2.0 out of 5 stars Frustrating read with a lack of plot advancement
This book was a real non-event for me. Nothing plot advancing actually happens - a large part of the book is spent on a "initiation" challenge that really doesn't add or... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Auradale
5.0 out of 5 stars Great new dystopian trilogy
Love this series, very well written fast paced and exciting, am really looking forward to reading 'Graduation day' when it is released on kindle.
Published 1 month ago by lisababy
1.0 out of 5 stars This author has real talent - I was page turning ...
This author has real talent - I was page turning wanting to know what next_ but while the first book was a complete story that led to the next episode , this one is half a story -... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Greenstone
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