Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Legend (Legend #1) - Marie Lu [Review]

This review contains spoilers.

Legend by Marie Lu

Title: Legend
Author: Marie Lu
Publisher: Putnam Juvenile
Series: Legend #1
Release Date: November 29th 2011
Pages: 320
Rating: ★★★1/2


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.


I liked this book while reading, but for some reason when I finished the book I was not satisfied. It felt like the book was missing something.

Things I liked:

- The different POV's 
The book was written from the points of view of Day and June, switching at every chapter. They were not confusing and gave both a completely different view of the world they were living in.

- The characters
I loved the protagonists Day and June. The secondary characters were a little flat and most died before we could get to know them better. But the main characters were very well-developed, mainly because they both were POV's. They were both very smart and strong, but grew up in totally different worlds. June is rich and trained to be a soldier and to love the dystopian government. Day is a poor boy who lives from stealing and hates the government. I love how they both protect their family at all costs. The only thing that bothered me was that they don't come over as 15-year-olds, but much older, their age just seemed a bit unrealistic. And if you look closely at all the events, maybe they seem a bit too smart and strong. They could conclude major things from one flimsy piece of evidence and beat a whole group of soldiers on their own.. I guess you should just not think about that too much:)

- The story
 I liked that throughout the book you and the protagonists learn what the government has been doing wrong, there is no info-dump. Because of the fast pacing you are never bored and the plot is not predictable. I did not really think the book had a great ending, it did not really encourage further reading, a cliffhanger would have been nicer.

Things I did not like:

- Extremely fast pacing
Yes, I like fast pacing, but a book can also go too quick. I thought the story was very hasty and right from the start the book went at super speed through several events which could have been described far better and more detailed. Also the society was explained too little, since there was apparently no time for that.

- The world-building
The dystopian society was explained gradually in the book, and of course from two different POV's  which made it more detailed. Although I understand everything about the world, I would have loved even more information and background stories of the society. It felt like only the essential was explained, while I like world-building to be very detailed. This was of course because of the fast-pacing, there was simply no time to explain more about the world

- The insta-attraction/'love'
Both Day and June were instantly attracted to each other. But after they kissed and that 'urge' was over, I never really sensed any connection or attraction/chemistry between them. It seemed almost as if they only liked each other because they found each other good looking. I would have liked to see some more relationship development, now their relationship just seems a little artificial and rushed.

I would have really loved the book had been longer and slower-paced. The story and characters were good, but this kind of ruined it for me.

Stars: 3.5 out of 5


  1. I really liked this book! I actually disagree with you - I thought the plot was pretty predictable, as far as dystopia novels go. I read this book a couple years ago, and I'd read a lot of dystopia novels then. They're all very similar. But, I agree that the plot was fast-paced and interesting! Just because it was predictable does not mean that it wasn't interesting :)

    Great review!

    Alyssa @ The Eater of Books!

  2. I also read this one a few years ago, and came away with the same feeling - like something was missing. Because of that, I haven't been over compelled to pick up book 2. Though I will probably change my mind when the third is released. I didn't mind the fast paced narrative, and I liked the main characters. But I agree that the world building was a little weak. I also hope that we get a little more between Day and June that makes us want to root for them. Great, thoughtful review!

  3. I'm glad you enjoyed Legend overall. I thought it was a fun and fast paced book, and I really liked the alternating POV. I will tell you that the world-building is explained in much more detail in Prodigy which I liked. Nice review, thanks for sharing! :)

  4. Well, I'm not a big fan of the insta-love, but I've heard a lot of good things about this one so I think it's still on my list. If a book can pull off multi-pov than I'm always intrigued. Thanks for the review :)

  5. Love your review! You pointed out some stuff that I didn't catch. Now that I think about it, it DOES feel like something is missing. I wish the author didn't put insta love on the book. Why do almost all young adult books have insta love UGH! Not all teens have relationships. I just wish the book didn't have romance. I really liked this book and love how it was very action packed.

    Little Book Star

  6. I also thought both POV's had a voice that seemed much older than 15 as well. I actually loved the pace and love this series very much. The sequel was amazing. Will you give it a shot? I'm curious what you would think of it. Great review! :)

    ~Sara @ Forever 17 Books

  7. Bought this one, but haven't read it yet, although I started it several times but put it aside and picked up another book instead. Don't know why though.


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