'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Friday 20 January 2012

Review: Legend

The first book of a new trilogy by author Marie Lu, Legend is a gripping dystopian thriller set in the distant future. The western United States is now the Republic, perpetually at war with its neighbours. Within the Republic, citizens are forced to undertake a test at age 10 which determines future education and career prospects.

15-year-olds June and Day know this well. From an elite family, June is the first ever citizen reported to score full marks in the test and she has progressed quickly through the ranks at the military training facility she attends. Day failed and he now lives on the streets trying to undermine the Republic and bring what support he can to his impoverished family.

Despite their different backgrounds, both June and Day are about to discover that the Republic is not what it seems and they will have to decide to trust each other if they wish to survive.

This story had me hooked from the first pages. June and Day are both charismatic characters with a personal background that draws the reader into their story. The story is compelling with gifted prodigy facing off against master criminal with results neither could anticipate. There is a good balance between thriller/action and relationship elements of the story.

Legend is an excellent dystopian thriller for teens, with a fast-paced plot and interesting, multifaceted characters. While there is an element of romance to the story, this is secondary to a well-written plot filled with the types of complicated relationship dynamics that mirror everyday life with family loyalties and friendships also playing a role in what motivates June and Day to take the risks that they do.

I can’t find information about when the second book in the trilogy will be released, but I will certainly be looking out for it as I am eager to see how this story develops.

Title: Legend (Legend #1)
Author: Marie Lu
Publisher: Razorbill (Penguin), $19.95 RRP
Publication Date: 28 November 2011
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9780141339412
For ages: 12+
Type: Young Adult Fiction