“Legend” by Marie Lu: a book review

Realistic, Urban/Dystopian readers will enjoy this, but not as much as “Divergent” (4/5) or “The Hunger Games” (4/5).

While “Legend” is shorter than both, and more unique, it’s glaring flaws including forced loved sub-plot, 15-year olds who should be 18 or older because they act like it, and contrived “sleuthing” scene knock it down a point (3/5). It is good. Many will enjoy it, but not love it. I really, really, really wanna give it a 4/5, but that’s the entertainment value for the sap I am; writing and overall comparison to what else I’ve read is something different.

Luckily, it was a book that knew how long it was supposed to be. It could have easily been 75 extra pages by some other idiot novelist, so:  for trimming it down properly and having a second act that never sagged, I gave it a 3.5/5. Great action writing, cold murder scenes, biochemical warfare on civilians, and a mid-point and segue into the second half of the book that made you go “aw ,s***, I gotta see how this ends now.”

The sequel book due out late 2012 or early 2013 (?) she is currently writing will either hurt the series or lift it up. Reason: Will we actually get to see whats going on with the rest of the world or the country unlike so many other dystopians that only focus on one “area” or “city” and never expand to bigger philosophical or political ideas? Don’t they think we could handle it. Flesh it out! Dig deep! Give us an epic tale about our country that chills us to the bone! Not some half-baked trilogy to capitalize on the current market, your first time novelist hacks!

But, hey, I can’t read a bunch of gold ever time I pick up a book. Not gonna happen. And this grade is not bad. It’s better than average, one of the top 20 I’d say from last year in YA, but not quiet award worthy or one of my favorites. The movie would be sick and give The Hunger Games a run for it’s money. Yeah, it moves like that. People you love die, and there is something poetic and Shakepearian about the whole story. Marie Lu even admitted she was inspired by “Les Miserables” when writing. Go figure.

Her sequel, “Prodigy”, I can already tell you, is going to get a 3 or a 4.5 from me. There’s a TON of potential with this series. For more info: http://www.marielu.org/books.html

Go, Lu!




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