Review: Legend by Marie Lu


Source: Library
Publisher: Putnam
Series: Legend #1
Edition: Hardcover, 320 Pages
Genre: Young Adult Dystopian
Purchase: AmazonBarnes & Noble / Book Depository*
*I receive a small monetary kickback from Amazon purchases
Rating: 4/5

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.

Full of nonstop action, suspense, and romance, this novel is sure to move readers as much as it thrills.

Legend is a book I’ve heard both incredibly positive and incredibly negative things about and because of that I put off reading it until the curiosity won. If you’re looking for a dystopian with something new to offer than I can’t really recommend Legend, but if you’re looking for a fast paced fun book that will get the blood pumping then by all mean,  yes!

The United States is broken and is now two different nations that are at constant war with each other. I thought the world building was interesting and enjoyed learning a bit about how the two nations (Republic & The Colonies) was formed. I also liked the idea of having a trail to decide your place in society, where failing could mean your death.  There is danger of plagues and a ton of poverty. However the world-building is not the focus in this one, so in some cases it lacked a bit of extra substance. The story is one built on emotion and fueled by the mystery of what is truly happening in the Republic. I had no issues guessing some things  but I definitely enjoyed the ride to finding out for certain. What this one lacks in world-building and uniqueness makes up for with the characters.

The story is told from two point of views, June’s and Day’s. June is a 15 year old girl who has aced her trails and belongs in the upper class elite. She’s tough, smart, and athletic…but she”s not perfect. In fact it too me a bit to warm up to her, but as the book progressed I found that I really did like her. She’s very resourceful and her loyalty is unquestionable. Day matches her perfectly in some areas while being her opposite in others. He’s a rebel and does whatever he must to provide for his family, even if it means stealing. I think I was most surprised to find that he was actually incredibly kind. Their relationship is kind of predictable but I think my overall love of Day made it bearable. I mean he’s basically a perfect candidate for my harem of book boyfriends/girlfriends. There are some side characters that had some very strong feelings about, in fact when I look at my notes there seem to be a lot of insults instead of helpful comments. Of course I can’t say who they are because that’s part of the mystery! I did call them a rat though…

So while Legend may not have been the most unique dystopian on the market I did find it to be really fun and interesting in spite of that. Not only do we get some great action, we also have some mystery going on as the story unfolds. I look forward to seeing where this series goes with book two and three, and I definitely look forward to seeing Day again.

4 stars

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6 Responses to Review: Legend by Marie Lu

  1. Alise (Readers in Wonderland) says:

    I love my dystopia books and this one sounds like a winner. I still have yet to read it but have it out from the library so will get to it soon. Sooner, now that I have read your review! The predictability might get to me but if everything else works, I should like it. Great review 🙂

  2. Michelle says:

    Very comprehensive and honest review. I’ve seen this book around but haven’t got around to getting it. Probably will get it when my TBR pile goes down. 🙂 Thanks for sharing!

  3. I definitely loved the characters of this book as well, and I agree on Day being a part of the harem. Hahaha!

  4. I have teetered on the fence about this but I think you have convinced me, and while the concept might not be new I love the sound of the action and pacing

  5. Pamela D says:

    I need to find time to read this series! I am glad to hear that you liked it even if it wasn’t an original premise.

  6. Christy says:

    I’ve been wanting to read this since it came out in 2011, but of course I’ve been slacking. Now I’m worried that I’ll be burned out on the dystopian thing, unless it’s unique. I’m sure I’ll still read this at some point though.

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