In the recent mass of YA dystopias, there seem to be very few focused mainly on science fiction. I can think of a couple, including Under the Never SIn the recent mass of YA dystopias, there seem to be very few focused mainly on science fiction. I can think of a couple, including Under the Never Sky , but very few are centered around science fiction. Marie Lu's debut is very focused on action and science fiction. It's no surprise that the novel has been optioned for a film; as I read it, I kept thinking, This would make a great movie .
Legend takes place in futuristic California, where the US has been separated into two groups: the Colonies and the Republic, which are constantly warring with one another. June has been groomed into high society her entire life after getting a perfect score on her Trial (a test designed to test children's abilities for future careers and schooling). When her beloved brother is murdered, she decides to hunt down his assassin, the strangely evasive Day. Day has lived his life on the run, teaming up with his friend Tess, and constantly trying to find ways to save his family from the plague passing through the poor slums where they live. When the two meet up, a "game of cat and mouse begins" (quoted from the blurb).
The book is essentially an action paced thrill ride with dashes of science fiction. And as I mentioned before, it would make a great movie. The plot twists and turns, and the ending bombshell is pretty shocking. I also enjoyed how the romanced didn't take a key part of the book, but was rather slow developed and As I read, it was hard not to keep on my seat and continue flipping the pages. However, I will acknowledge that the plot was not perfect. It was far, far from perfect. World building is hard. It's hard for writers of any genre, whether it be contemporary fiction or fantasy; you need to distinguish your world and make it believable and understandable. I know I have linked this in my reviews before, but this is a great resource on world building and why it is necessary: http://cherrytreenotes.blogspot.com/2... As my friend pointed out in this post, world building helps readers understand your world and see it inside their minds. But the truth is there really is no world building in Legend . It was hard for me to picture the world. I got the gist of things -- what the Trials were, what the country was like -- but it was hard to picture. I wanted more details, I wanted more explanation, I wanted more. The other issue I had with the plot is that at times it seemed like the plot was sacrificed towards having more action. Some scenes seemed rushed in favor of the action when they could have been extended and brought out longer.
As for the characters, I think Lu's strengths lie with her characters. She made me feel for both June and Day, making me feel sorry and excited for them even as I was frustrated with their actions. I related to both the entire time, which is a difficult feat, especially when they both hate each other for good reasons. Both June and Day had distinct voices that sounded like the female and male genders respectively, and though I hated Day's yellow font (so hard to read!) they were very different from each other. Some of the characters were one dimensional, specifically in the cases of Commander Jameson and Chian, but I think that they may have been one-dimensional in that way to make us despise them. I enjoyed all the characters (except for the ones I disliked) and they made up the strongest parts of the novel.
The writing was good, and just like the plot: quick, fast paced, and fluid. Lu's writing was easy to read and interesting. Lu certainly proved herself to be a strong debut author, with rave reviews and stars all around. I'll be reading the sequel, despite my concerns; I am curious about what happens next in this series.
I would reccommend this book to fans of action, adventure, and romance, and I expect Legend to be on the big screen at some point in the next few years.
This review is long over due. I read this book at the end of December and never got around to reviewing with the bustle of the holidays. Of course, itThis review is long over due. I read this book at the end of December and never got around to reviewing with the bustle of the holidays. Of course, it's only when I need to write a review that I remember that I still need to review Dark Inside. (I try to post a review about twice a week and so far my blog has been desolate and empty this week.)
I have talked to the author of this book before and I was interested to read it, and I found it to be an interesting read if one that didn't answer many questions.
The opening scenes are one that you might find in a classic science fiction movie: the Apocalypse is here. Gigantic tornadoes sweep the nation, people get killed in the brink of an eye, the hospitals are overcrowded and people swarm the streets simply looking for food and shelter and trying to avoid the deadly creatures. A group of teens work together to help each other and try to survive.
Now, in the sense, that's something I might find at the movie theater. And there are other books (and movies) on Apocalypses. Sometimes these books that seem ripped from movies seem better fit to remain on the screen, and others (like Divergent ) are a nice popcorn read. I wasn't sure which way Dark Inside would fall. In the end, it seemed to be a nice popcorn read with a good deal of substance.
The plot was interesting, and of course, adventurous. The scenes of horror were described nicely and as well as terrifying me. (Jeyn definitely knows how to write horror.) I did feel like I didn't know much about the Baggers, and so many questions were left unanswered. I know that this is the first book in the series, but at the end I was left fairly bewildered.
The characters-- there are a LOT. Jeyn chose four teens to write third person viewpoints from (Aries, Clementine, Mason, Michael) but the teens meet plenty of other people along the way, some that they join with, others that they betray, some that betray them. It was hard to keep track of all the characters at times, and they would switch back and forth between "rescue groups" so often I got confused. But all the narration was very realistic and sounded how real teenagers speak, and I related to all of the characters and their predicaments.
As for the writing, Jeyn is a very gifted writer. She wrote third person extremely well and made each character defined. Her writing was very fluid, and scary. As mentioned before she definitely can write horror. This book isn't really the paranormal/sci-fi hybrid one might make it out to be as much as a scary, horror-filled novel. She's a good writer to watch and I'll read the sequel.
If you like horror, sci fi, or you just want to be scared, this is a good book and a strong start to the series. ...more