Emily May's Reviews > Blood Red Road

Blood Red Road by Moira Young
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Mar 30, 2012

really liked it
bookshelves: dystopia-utopia, young-adult, 2011, arc
Read from May 19 to 20, 2011



This is the novel that I wanted Graceling to be. An alternate world/reality full of adventure with a hardcore warrior heroine, and here's the key bit, who doesn't feel the need to unsex herself (à la Lady Macbeth) and prove that she's not feminine. In fact, all the female characters are wonderfully strong and unforgiving, no damsels finally, and there's just a general sense of equality - pretty much everyone is a warrior without a masculinity v. femininity contest. Where Graceling seemed in some ways downright offensive to a 'certain type' of women, Blood Red Road has a heroine who is unapologetic of her gender and doesn't attempt to constantly prove herself by becoming stereotypically masculine.

Saba is a great heroine. She makes no pretense of being some kind of saviour or martyr, she simply has two missions: find her brother, and stay alive. She uses violence throughout, but only to accomplish her missions rather than some kind of demonstration of her worth. I also liked the love interest of the novel, even with all the unnecessary dithering about they both did with regards to one another, it seems romance is never straight forward.

The dystopian element of the novel had just the right amount of action and horror, without that "I'm just cruisin along through this awful, oppressive society" like in Matched, where it's damn near impossible to care about the characters because even they don't seem too bothered about the whole situation. It was a refreshingly quick take-off too. I prepared myself for a slow start when I encountered dust clouds in the first few pages (uh, do I care?) but the novel got to the action almost instantly with a murder and kidnapping - that's right, no Diana Gabaldon style digression from the main story, I've missed this kind of novel that get's into the thick of the plot right away.

Oh, and another thing... journies. I love journies in novels, when they're kept at a good fast pace you feel like there's constantly something happening. Though the books are actually very different from Blood Red Road, one of the main reasons I loved The Knife of Never Letting Go and Beyond the Deepwoods is because they had awesome fast-paced journies throughout. So, yeah, kudos for that.

I know some people who've read ARCs of this didn't like the language style, but I did. I've always liked different accents, dialect and colloquialism. It was different, but a good kind of different. Though, on that subject, I'd just like to finish with my own opinion of a bad kind of different:


Blood Red Road (Dustlands, #1) by Moira Young
What on earth is this bloody awful UK cover?

The US version is a million and one times better:
Blood Red Road (Dust Lands, #1) by Moira Young
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Reading Progress

05/19/2011 page 141
28.0%
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Comments (showing 1-21 of 21) (21 new)

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message 1: by Glen (new)

Glen Krisch This looks really good. How is it?


Emily May Glen wrote: "This looks really good. How is it?"

So far I'm really enjoying it, I have so many things I can't wait to say in my review :)


Tatiana Agree about the UK cover. What is this?!

Glad you enjoyed it:)


Emily May Tatiana wrote: "Agree about the UK cover. What is this?!

Glad you enjoyed it:)"


That cover is unforgivable, but yes, everything you said about it was right. Again. :)


Tatiana Well, that's why my fave GR friends are the ones who always agree with me:) But seriously, I really love to find friends here who have similar taste to mine. So much easier to get almost guaranteed good recommendations from them.


Brigid *Flying Kick-a-pow!* Loved this book, and your review! I read this book because so many people were saying it reminded them of Chaos Walking (which I also loved). The writing style was very similar to Patrick Ness's but I thought Moira Young told a very different (and equally compelling) story.

Oh gosh, the UK cover is so tacky looking. Funny, usually I like the UK cover of books more! :P


Emily May Thanks Brigid! I agree, I absolutely adore the Chaos Walking trilogy as well as this, though the stories are very different :)

I think some UK covers have been good in the past but lately a lot of them seem like such weird choices - as in, they have nothing to do with the story in a lot of cases :/


Brigid *Flying Kick-a-pow!* Chaos Walking is the best. :) I don't think anything will ever be quite the same. *sighs* But Blood Red Road was still very good.

Indeed ... How strange.


Emily May thank you, thomas:) yup, i wasn't thrilled by graceling either - this was much better!


message 10: by Kyle (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kyle I loved this book! I agree with everything you said! I've been trying to get all my friends to read it, but as soon as I mentioned the the difference of the writing style, they get turned off.


Turkan Hi, Emily, i recently started Blood Red Road and i can't figure out whether it's set in that past, present, or future yet, do you remember? Thnx :)


Emily May I can't remember if it ever says where/when it's set, but it's been a long time since I read the book.


Brigid *Flying Kick-a-pow!* It's set in the future. I think the idea is that basically the world has just gone to total chaos to the point where it's mostly just a wasteland.


Turkan Brigid *Flying Kick-a-pow!* wrote: "It's set in the future. I think the idea is that basically the world has just gone to total chaos to the point where it's mostly just a wasteland."

Oh, Ok thanks.


Turkan Emily wrote: "I can't remember if it ever says where/when it's set, but it's been a long time since I read the book."

Thanks anyway for replying. :)


Brigid *Flying Kick-a-pow!* Turkan wrote: "Brigid *Flying Kick-a-pow!* wrote: "It's set in the future. I think the idea is that basically the world has just gone to total chaos to the point where it's mostly just a wasteland."

Oh, Ok thanks."


No problem!


Turkan Yeah, i definitely agree with the journey books opinion, you never know what to expect!


message 18: by Robert (new)

Robert The language style is awful. how did you manage to read it up to the end? :)


Emily May I really enjoyed the language style so that helped :)


Justin Cruzana I was worried you wouldn't like this! But I'm really happy that you did :)


Digne Finally someone who shares my opinion of Graceling! I'll take your advice and pick up Blood Red Road.


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