Legend by Marie Lu

 Legend by Marie Lu
Putnam Juvenile
 Length: 336 pages
 Genera: Science Fiction
 Subjects: Dystopian, Romance, Rebellion
How I obtained the book: Library; hardcover


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.

Legend is not, by any means, a perfect book but as debut novels go, I found it very enjoyable. Full of action and character, Legend is a fun, yet ultimately not memorable, experience.

The two main characters, June and Day, are so similar in personality that it is often hard to differentiate between the two of them. Lu, somewhat ingeniously, used different color font to distinguish the two of them. The choice of gold font was poor in my opinion, as it was often hard to read.

My main issue with the book was how quickly June and Day got together. There was no need for June and Day to actually fall for each other in such a short time period, especially considering how this is to be a series. I found this unrealistic, and distracting from the story.

Despite these complaints, Lu did a very good job with creating real emotion in the story. Though Day and June were practically the same person at times, both of them had very real, tangible feelings, which helped to hold my interest.

The secondary characters, such as Metias, were better developed than the main characters, and I found myself much more interested in their lives and personalities than I was in Day and June’s life. Even a small character such as Ollie the Dog, was enjoyable.

The plot of Legend was very weak, mostly due to poor character building. It was often transparent, with obvious plot twists. The seeming invincibility of Day and June was unsettling, as well, and my lack of interest in either of them made it often a struggle to keep reading.

On the other hand, Lu’s pacing was well done, and the adrenaline of the story helped push it along and keep me reading. The plot, while predictable, was still engaging enough for me to want to know what happened. Legend’s plot was not the most original one, but it wasn’t stale or dull at all.

Marie Lu shows a lot of promise as an author with this book, and I will most likely check out her other books. Legend was not a masterpiece by any means, but it was a nice, light read that I would recommend.

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