Review: Legend by Marie Lu

legendTitle: Legend
Series: Legend # 1
Author: Marie Lu
Genre: Dystopian
Source:  Library
Published: 2011
Format: E-book
Buy Links: Amazon/B&N/TBD

Blurb from Amazon:
What was once the western United States is now home to the Republic, a nation perpetually at war with its neighbors. Born into an elite family in one of the Republic’s wealthiest districts, fifteen-year-old June is a prodigy being groomed for success in the Republic’s highest military circles. Born into the slums, fifteen-year-old Day is the country’s most wanted criminal. But his motives may not be as malicious as they seem.

From very different worlds, June and Day have no reason to cross paths – until the day June’s brother, Metias, is murdered and Day becomes the prime suspect. Caught in the ultimate game of cat and mouse, Day is in a race for his family’s survival, while June seeks to avenge Metias’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 keep its secrets.

Case File: Metias Iparis/ Similar to Revolution/Underdeveloped Secondary Characters
Rating: 4 out of 5

If you like Revolution, then Legend is right for you.It has that same sort of feeling with the hiding of the United States history and the Patriots as rebels who want to reform it. But that is not the plot of the book.

The plot of the book is centered around Metias’s death, the need to avenge him, and the circumstances under which he died. June hunts down Day to avenge Metias while Day struggles to save his family from the plague disease that occasionally strikes down the Republic. June and Day are wildly successful (lucky in some cases) and very smart as well. They carry a sense of devotion to their families that is admirable.  June and Day have a semi-instant love relationship but I like that is not true instant love. They keep their head in the game and try to accomplish their original  goals . Legend  is a well-paced book between action and inner monologues.

June is the reason why I really like the book, plus her dead brother.  Metias was probably my favorite character because he was a dead, honorable military guy. I don’t feel Day was as developed as June because he was always in the right while June slowly had her world crumble upon her and had to make difficult choices as she learn the truth about the plague and her brother’s death. She was divided between loyalty to the Republic and the truth she learns as she investigates Day. Day’s world also collapses around him but it just reinforces his feelings towards the Republic while June’s feeling are changed and she grows into herself.

The world-building is interesting because it is a fallen United States that has been divided into three factions. The Republic which is the West Coast of the US, the Colonies is the East Coast and the Patriots as trying to restore the United States which means the Republic and the Colonies hate them because it is a threat to their power. The Chinese are viewed as the enemies of the Republic; they won’t import goods from China. Not much of the outside world dynamics is known. Plus, how the United States fell  isn’t known as well but hopefully, the next book dives more into the politics and military dynamics. The Republic holds Trials to determine which people can be productive citizens but it is kept hush hush. It seems relative harmless like an interview, multiple choice exam, and a physical exam combination (so like school) unless you fail and then you get send into labor camps (but not really). It’s intriguing.

Legend has some problems with underdeveloped secondary characters because they all just fade into the background of the book. Tess, who is Day’s companion, doesn’t speak much, she acts more like a shadow to Day. Kaede, a bartender/patriot fighter, fights really well but not much is known about her. Thomas’s rank is never known but he is a soldier, he grew up in the slums but there isn’t much on him either. The military doesn’t have much character development either, other than slowly forcing readers to lose faith in the military as the book progresses. There is more character development on Metias who happens to be dead but haunts Legend like a living character.

In the end, Legend  was a good book. June Iparis’s character development was great to see. I’m looking forward to learning more about the Republic and the fall of the United States because the world-building was interesting.


4 Hearts-Pretty Good

4 Hearts-Pretty Good


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