Legend by Marie Lu is the first in a trilogy that will be completed shortly. The third book, Champion, is due out in November! I purchased a physical copy of Legend earlier this year because I love the interior fonts and textures used. However, it was suffering the usual fate of books already published, no matter how tempting: review books kept pushing Legend aside. So I used some spare credits to get the audiobook version! I’m very happy to have finally started this trilogy, since it does the dystopian genre proud!
(I’m sick and on cold medicine, so if this review seems a bit strange, I’m sorry D:)
Note: I listened to Legend on an audiobook, which can definitely color my opinion of the story in general.
Legend by Marie Lu
Narrated by Mariel Stern, Steven Kaplan
Published by Putnam Juvenille on Nov. 29th, 2011
Genres: Dystopia, YA
Length: 320 pages
How I got my copy: Purchased
IndieBound - Book Depository - Goodreads
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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.
- There were lots of little things in Legend that delighted me. I would feel silly listing PUPPY as a strength, but the presence of an adorable pet that isn’t used as a dramatic twist was enjoyable. I also enjoyed the computer hacking and secret blogs as plot devices since I haven’t read much about blogs in dystopian stories ;-).
- The ending of Legend was rockin’. There were feels and a surprisingly realistic set of events. I had been wondering how in the world things would end in such a way as to allow more books (ie with the main characters not dead, haha), and Legend pulled it off in a way that is actually believable instead of ridiculously lucky ;-).
- Whenever you have a story told from a boy and girl’s POV, it’s kind of obvious where things are likely to head. However, the romance in Legend was definitely slow-burn, with no one professing undying love, but there being a definite attraction brewing. I appreciate that June and Day were able to prioritize survival over googly eyes!
- There were two narrators for the audiobook of Legend, a man and a woman. They switched off at the expected intervals since some chapters are from June’s perspective and some are from Day’s. I thought that both narrators pulled off the voice of the opposite gender well enough when they needed to :).
- I wasn’t a huge fan of the pacing of the female narrator’s reading. She pronounced a couple of things oddly (“chimney” only has two syllables, NOT THREE) and it seemed like she was over-pronouncing to the point that I wanted her to speed the heck up.
- I have to admit that Legend felt like a rather typical dystopian story until the last 1/4. If I didn’t have lots of people telling me how much they love this trilogy, I’m worried I would have put it down before realizing the awesomeness!
- The plot of Legend was fairly predictable in that there wasn’t any huge betrayal or reveal plot twist. Legend felt like the kind of story that would have worked well with a twist though, so I’m hoping the future books have one?
Overall I’m thrilled that I finally read Legend and I’m trying to decide whether I should buy Prodigy, get the audiobook or wait until the winter holidays >.>. I kind of want to binge on this series when Champion comes out! If you enjoy dystopian YA and are looking for something to help you recover from the end of the Divergent series, you should definitely check Legend out!