The world-building around the government in this novel was really pretty good. The social structure based on tattooed ranks was inventive, and I loved the blatant reference to college degrees, SAT, ACT, etc. to prove a person's "worth". This felt totally spot-on and was very clever. While I did enjoy the world-building, I have to say that the lack of character depth was disappointing. Aside from Augusta and to some extent Celia, none of the other characters felt like they moved past the two-dimensional realm. Augusta and Celia are wonderfully complex monsters, particularly Augusta. They are driven to near madness trying to do anything they can to protect the ones they love. The "masking" Kitty is subject to is particularly terrifying, and the idea of training to be someone else reminded me of "The False Prince" by Jennifer A. Nielsen.
The least well-developed character to me felt like Kitty, the main character. I am also appalled by her horrible choices. She would rather be a prostitute than participate in a rebellion? Come on now!
Overall, I really liked this but I didn't feel like it really offered anything brand new. It was just a mashup of a lot of fun concepts already used in other series ("The Pledge" by Kimberly Derting, "The False Prince" by Jennifer A. Nielsen, etc.). That being said, if you liked any of these series and are looking for more, check out "Pawn".