Legend by Marie Lu
Author: Marie Lu
Publication Date: November 29, 2011
Publisher: Putnam Juvenile (Penguin Group Imprint)
Genre: Young Adult, Dystopian
Source: Bought it
Book Description from Publisher:
The flooded coast of former Los Angeles. Two warring nations of North America — the Republic and the Colonies.
Born into an elite family in one of the Republic’s wealthiest districts, fifteen-year-old June is a prodigy. Obedient, passionate, and committed to her country, she is being groomed for success in the Republic’s highest military circles.
Born into the slums of the Republic’s Lake Sector, fifteen-year-old Day is the country’s most wanted criminal. But his motives may not be as malicious as they seem.
From different worlds, June and Day have no reason to cross paths — until the day June’s brother is murdered. And Day becomes the prime suspect. Now, caught in the ultimate game of cat and mouse, Day is in a race for his family’s survival while June tries desperately to avenge her brother’s death. But in a shocking turn of events, the two uncover the truth of what has really brought them together and the sinister lengths their country will go to in order to keep its secrets.
I picked this one up during my dystopian book reading binge phase. I had heard good things about it, and figured why not? When I first opened it up, the font colour of the text is divided into Gold and Black. I hadn’t seen anything like it before and for me it definitely distinguished itself. The story is told from two alternating perspectives, the gold text corresponds with Day - the poor, wanted criminal with a heart of gold and the black text corresponds with June - the smart, kick ass girl prodigy of the republic. Although I hear in some versions (likely the second round of prints?) that there is only different fonts that separate June and Day.
The cover features the symbol of the Republic which has a great simplistic boldness to it. The symmetry and the colours of gold and silver together create a very totalitarian effect that works with the whole military controlled nation.
I loved the feeling of contrast that we got from each world, where everything is clean, expensive and pristine in June’s world versus the dark gritty world of Day.
June’s character was a refreshing take on a heroine, she was smart, skilled in combat and strategy, fearless and loyal. She knew what she wanted to do and did it, she didn’t wait for someone to tell her what to do and she didn’t need to be rescued by some boy. In fact she did most of the rescuing if I recall. What really had me cheering was that June could put the pieces of the mystery puzzle together. She didn’t need a huge villain/hero stand off where the villain reveals all the details - these always make me go *face palm* it’s so cliche, and never works in favour of the villain. Her cunning ideas and thirst for vengeance leads her right into her target Day and into the middle of secret government conspiracy that makes her challenge where her own loyalties lie.
Upon reading the book description I wholeheartedly thought Day would be the gruff and tough criminal that was constantly causing trouble because of some vendetta he had against the Republic. But boy was I wrong (if anything June is the bad ass action figure). Day was not what I expected - he spends his days surviving and churning up money and supplies to support his family from a distance while causing trouble for the Republic. If anything he kind of reminds me of Robin Hood, the heart of gold outlaw stealing from the rich. It’s the sharp mind, and brute strength combined with his unfaltering humanity that makes him such a lovable character.
Of course when you throw a young boy and girl together from opposite worlds in dire life or death circumstances there’s the obligatory hormonal romance. However, with these two, their romance is fuelled by honour and trust which forges a powerful bonds that makes these two a deadly team to try and confront.
The villains of this book were at times difficult to distinguish, at one moment they’re friends and you turn around and there’s the barrel of a gun pressed to your head, the circumstances of everyone were ever changing and it kept me on edge and constantly reading to find out the truth of it all.
Because the story line is told from two perspectives, we are introduced to conflicting situations throughout- and this really mounted the tension throughout the book because as the reader you want to know what the real account of what went down is. Then when it’s all revealed there was plot points that even all my speculating couldn't predict. This is a great action packed read, and I really can’t wait to see what the next one entails!
Rating: 5/5 Steaming HOT cups of Tea!
I loved it and seriously cannot wait for the next one! Speaking of which the cover for it was just released! Take a look!
Isn't it a great cover?! Ahh so excited!
Also you can read an excerpt from Prodigy here: USA Today Exclusive Prodigy Excerpt