Thursday, 16 January 2014

Reading The Legend series

Lately I've been watching a lot of book reviews on Youtube and this YA novel by Marie Lu showed up the other day. One of the first things that I noticed when reading up on this book was the numerous mentions of "The Hunger Games" among the reviews. Sold. Set in a dystopian nation on the west coast of the U.S called The Republic (what is with me and my dystopian novels?), a 15-year-old upper class girl hunts for her brother's murderer who happens to be a 15-year-old one-man anti-government operation from the slums. But although June and Day grew up in different worlds, they may in fact have the same enemy. (Ominous music.)

Let's just get this out of the way; This first book did not get me as hooked as the Hunger Games did when I read it the first time. That saying, it's not a bad book at all. It is well-paced (probably better than the previously mentioned book), quite exciting and keeps you on your toes. I love me a good dystopian novel and the plot is interesting albeit a bit predictable. Unfortunately the characters are... kind of boring. I get an allergic reaction from characters who are constantly described as "beautiful". (An exceptionally good-looking main character, how unique! Ugh.) Not to mention that they're both geniuses and could beat any obstacle course any day. But I read the entire book in the space of one evening and I've already started the second one, so clearly it doesn't bother me that much. Plus I do like a strong female lead character. I'm looking forward to seeing what the second book throws at me!

I am writing this within fifteen minutes of finishing the second book and I'm still coming down from the book-high that I just experienced. The sequel to Legend was on a whole different level. The story was a lot less predictable and continued having a well-paced story line, with occasional action. The kind that makes you widen your eyes and bite your knuckles. Even the characters improved. Yes, I admit that I may have been too harsh with them previously but I feel like they have now redeemed themselves. There has been a certain growth and actual character flaws have appeared - or so I'm telling myself now since I feel so invested in their story.

I'm in general not a "second-book-person" when it comes to trilogies as they usually feel like nothing but bridges between the introduction and the conclusion. Hello, we're the same people as in the first book and at the start of the third book we will still be working towards the exact same goal as we originally said. However I definitely preferred this book to its predecessor and I feel like all of the events were just as important as the ones in the first one and altered the direction of the story. Not to mention that I quite liked the absence of the necessary introductions of slightly cliché background stories of the characters. Also, TWISTS. I cannot wait to continue reading the third book now.

Breaking news from an emotional wreck; I finished the Legend series two minutes ago (written on Saturday). I had to actually pace myself and only read a little bit at a time each day but obviously today I cracked and I finished it, emotions all over the place. All over. The third book is a worthy ending to the Legend series. I feel like the story had matured and the characters with it. Without giving anything away, the story has sort of reached its culmination; the Republic is on the brink of collapse and the situation looks quite hopeless. The characters are now older and aware that the world is not as black-and-white as they previously thought and this brings along new difficult decisions to make.

Along with the Domesday feel of the third book there's also a lot of squabbling over politics and feelings. No wonder, there's been some serious issues going on in the two previous books. However, I am willing to overlook that because the moments that are action-filled are SO good and my heart was racing as I became immersed in the punching, the dodging and the shooting that June and Day seem to constantly find themselves in. Also, it would've been a rather thin story without the personal drama. Despite my initial dislike for these teenage heroes, towards the end I found myself pathetically wishing that their love story would work out and that there would be a happy-ever-after ending. Did my wish come true? Go ahead and read the Legend series to find out. (Oh what a cheesy ending to a review.)

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