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Promised (The Birthmarked Trilogy) Hardcover – October 2, 2012

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Promised (The Birthmarked Trilogy) + Prized (Birthmarked) + Birthmarked
Price for all three: $34.34

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  • Prized (Birthmarked) $12.67
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 - 18 years
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Lexile Measure: 730L (What's this?)
  • Series: The Birthmarked Trilogy (Book 3)
  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Roaring Brook Press; 1 edition (October 2, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1596435712
  • ISBN-13: 978-1596435711
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 5.8 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (142 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #557,642 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

More than a year has passed since Birthmarked (2010), and in this trilogy ender, 17-year-old Gaia returns to the walled city of the Enclave along with her Sylum followers, who are desperate to once again have female babies. But things have changed in the Enclave. The ruthless Protectorat has created the Vessel Institute: a baby factory for birthing offspring for wealthy but childless couples. Will the standoff between camps be breached by diplomacy or violent assault? (Take a guess.) Though some of Gaia’s impulsive actions to save her beloved Leon strain credulity, this is a satisfying finish to a strong series that deftly mixed romance and, of all things, genetics. Grades 9-12. --Daniel Kraus


“An interesting mixture of fantasy and science fiction.”—VOYA, December 2012
“…a satisfying finish to a strong series that deftly mixed romance and, of all things, genetics.”—Booklist, October 1, 2012
“Readers […] will want to see Gaia succeed against the odds once again.”—Kirkus, September 15, 2012
“Readers who relish romance, lots of action and drama that includes overthrowing an evil regime, and strong female characters will love this book.” —School Library Journal, January 2013
  --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

More About the Author

Caragh M. O'Brien is the author of the BIRTHMARKED trilogy and THE VAULT OF DREAMERS, a new YA sci fi novel from Macmillan/Roaring Brook Press. Her novels have been honored by the YALSA BFYA, the Junior Library Guild, the Amelia Bloomer List, and state reading lists in Texas, Arkansas, Utah, Georgia, and Rhode Island. Ms. O'Brien lives with her family in Connecticut, and recently resigned from teaching high school English to write. For more information, visit
Photo (c) Tomy O'Brien

Customer Reviews

Couldn't wait to read the next 2 1/2 books in the series.
I did recommend the book series to some of the students, and if you read the first book, you definitely have to read the rest of them.
Candice S
The book just wasn't as good as I expected and it felt like there was too much action and not enough character/plot development.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

21 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Christina (Ensconced in Lit) TOP 1000 REVIEWER on November 9, 2012
Format: Hardcover
I have been looking forward to this book since Prized came out a year ago. I thought there was no way I could be disappointed. I was wrong.

Promised by Caragh O'Brien is the third installment of the Birthmarked trilogy. I really enjoyed Birthmarked and Prized, and was excited to see what Gaia and her friends were up to next since they were travelling back to the Enclave, where the scary Protectorat (and Leon's father) rules with an iron fist. Gaia is traveling back with her company, now Matrarch of New Sylum, after the death of Olivia. Her goal is to set up another community outside of the Enclave and broker for water and peace between their people. Unsurprisingly, she runs into difficulty.

I was so incredibly frustrated with this book from start to finish. First, we have Gaia, who I really liked in the first two books, but just couldn't like in this book. She has become Matrarch and fumbles around like someone who has no experience. This is the third book in the trilogy, she is allowed to be pretty awesome now in knowledge and skill, especially with all that she's been through. Instead, she makes mistake after mistake (pretty obvious ones too, ones where I was yelling to myself, WHY are you doing that??).

MAJOR SPOILER ALERT. She has supposedly PICKED Leon, but we still have Will and Peter Chardo in the background, always hanging around, because everyone is in love with Gaia. The thing that is most annoying is that she is bothered by the fact that these two boys may start developing feelings for other women. I almost stood up and gave Peter a high five when he asked Gaia if she enjoyed having two backups just in case things with Leon didn't work out.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By The Book Runner on October 4, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have one word for this book: De. Press. Ing! I admit that Caragh O'Brien is an excellent writer and can weave a good story, but when I started out reading the Birthmarked trilogy, I had no idea it was going to be so dark and gut wrenching.

Promised starts off with the exodus of 1800 Sylum residents traipsing across the wasteland for weeks to get to The Enclave to set up a city outside the walls next to Wharfton. On the way, they rescue Gaia's older brother, Jack who has been stabbed, and his 8 year old brave friend, Angie. Will and Peter are still in the story and are still in love with Gaia, but have resolved that she is with Leon and their chances with her are over while still being fiercely protective of her. Upon arriving, Gaia is immediately arrested and only the quick thinking of Leon's sister Evelyn is she able to get free. The Protectorate and Mabrother Iris are just as evil as they were in Birthmarked and continue with the torture and lies, taking them to a new level of wickedness.

I did love that Leon is back and is a co-leader with Gaia, not just her lackey. I love that he is strong and stands up to Gaia, protecting her, standing up to his father and courageously taking the physical and mental torture the insane Iris dishes out. He was a main character in this book who did what he thought was right and was a powerful force against his father and in helping the revolution get started. He was extremely romantic with Gaia and beyond understanding in his love for her. He makes my heart melt and was the best thing about this story.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By xendula on October 26, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I preordered this book and started reading it at midnight on release day, because I was so excited about the next phase in Gaia's and Leon's story. I made it 60% through and just lost interest. Not only is Leon mostly gone, Gaia developed into a person I do not like or know. She is being intentionally idiotic and running into danger for no reason. Gone is her strong character and her determination, replaced by a weak spoiled damsel in distress wanna-be leader.
What does not make any sense:
- the first night at their destination, she abandons the people she "leads" to sleep in her old house in a comfy bed
- when she meets her second brother for the very first time, they do not spend one sentence on "oh wow, so nice to fnally meet you" - they have a conversation about something or other, but zero emotional reaction to their first ever encounter
-someone said it before, she goes into some tunnel for some idiotic reason, gets lost, and after hours, finally finds someone who can tell her how to get back out. Umm, yeah. Idiot.

There are so many things that do not make sense, and, as a reader, I am so disengaged from the story, that I think I'll skip the rest of this. Too bad, I really loved the first two books, and this one kind of ruined the way I now perceive the series.

I don't know how many stars to rate it. Maybe two? And, Macmillan should have done a better job proofreading. There were typos, ommited words, and grammatical errors in the kindle edition.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Gumshoe on October 23, 2013
Format: Paperback
I enjoyed the first two books in this series, but as a mom of teen daughters, I would have to say this final book is appropriate for only older teens. I was shocked at the cruelty and torture the main female character endured. The horrifying ending was unbelievable. I was disappointed and the gross details have stuck with me. I wish I hadn't read this series.
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