Author: Marie Lu
Publication: April 16th 2013, Speak
Format: Trade Paperback
Source: Own Copy from NBS
Buy it on: Amazon | Barnes and Noble | The Book Depository | iBooks | Kobo | National Book Store / Fully Booked (PH)
From different worlds, June and Day have no reason to cross paths...Until June's brother is murdered, and Day becomes the prime suspect.In a shocking turn of events, the two uncover what has really brought them together, and the sinister lengths to which their country will go to keep its secrets.
Reading Legend was like boot camp for me, in a way that the world that we live is not as far from how we are in this time and how we are all blind to what happens to people less fortunate or those who only wish to survive.
“It's strange," I say to Day later, as we both curl up on the floor. Outside, the hurricane rages on. In a few hours we'll need to head out. "It's strange being here with you. I hardly know you. But...sometimes it feels like we're the same person born into two different worlds."
Legend is the story of June Iparis, a 15 year old college student at Drake, who got the highest score in the Republic, a 1500 mark. Those with the lowest scores are forced to live in the slums with no education and suffering from the plague ruining the cities in the Republic. Daniel "Day" Wing, is an enigmatic young man, who is being targeted by the soldiers of the Republic for committing crimes including stealing plague cures and destroying military properties. No one in the Republic knows what Day looks like, and that's great for his cover-up, until that fateful day that Day and June's lives are intertwined by an incident that changes both their lives.
What's so amazing about Legend to me, as a reader, is how immersed I got to the story. The attention to detail to every character's movement, emotions, problems and the way the setting is linked to everyone in the story is mind boggling. The fight scenes and the violence are what got to me personally, because of how well written they were and I feel like with every punch and kick June makes, for example, I pull in my breath, exhale everytime she's okay and I am taken away into this cinematic terrain of movement, engaging and powerful. Day's escape from the soldiers is my favorite in the book. It's like you feel his pain and his need to really find a way out.
“When you stand out there," John continues in a hoarse voice, "keep your chin up, all right? Don't let them get to you."
"Make them work for it. Punch someone if you have to." John gives me a sad, crooked smile. "You're a scary kid. So scare them. Okay? All the way until the end."
For the first time in a long time, I feel like a little brother. I have to swallow hard to keep my eyes dry. "Okay," I whisper.”
The way family is considered in this novel was done pretty well. With June's loss to Day's concern for his family. The main reason, in many ways why the characters are driven and motivated to do what they have to do is because of their families. Without this, June might just seem like a soldier out to fulfill a job and Day being a total psycho.
“What a joke! Poor little rich girl's fallen in love with the Republic's most famous criminal.”
The romance. Ahhhh, the romance. The romance was a bit awkward, cute, interesting and too instant for me. INSTALOVE! At 15, it is pretty normal, nowadays to actually hook up, you know. I am very sorry, I am only aware from observations. LOL. Maybe what I would've changed is if June and Day could've basked in the idea of falling in love when Day is already captured and stuff and not exactly getting insanely intense after being together for a few days to a week. WOOHOO! But as for my YA heart, it soars because well, FEELS! And Day is gorgeous, let that be put out there for the world to learn and drool over his amazing light blonde hair and blue eyes. Such a hottie at 15. I still cringe at 15 actually. Why couldn't they be 18 for crying out loud. Sorry.
"I will hunt you down. I will scour the streets of Los Angeles for you. Search every street in the Republic if I have to. I will trick you and deceive you, lie, cheat and steal to find you, tempt you out of your hiding place, and chase you until you have nowhere else to run. I make you this promise: your life is mine.”
Anyway, I am in love with Marie Lu's writing style nonetheless. It is unafraid to talk about the problems of the government, the secrets hidden from the people and the harsh realities that we might face in a post apocalyptic future. The action, thrill and energy that the novel provides, allows the readers to be immersed into a world familiar yet not. I do look forward to more of Marie Lu's works because she is becoming one of the prominent authors of the past decade.
“Each day means a new twenty-four hours. Each day means everything’s possible again. You live in the moment, you die in the moment, you take it all one day at a time.”
Legend is a great introduction to a dystopian world that is energetic, mysterious, dark and engaging, taking the readers to great new heights.
I write young adult novels, and have a special love for dystopian books. Ironically, I was born in 1984. Before becoming a full-time writer, I was an Art Director at a video game company. Now I shuffle around at home and talk to myself a lot. :)
I graduated from the University of Southern California in '06 and currently live in LA, where I spend my time stuck on the freeways.