Author: Marie Lu
Age Group: Young Adult (YA)
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.My Thoughts
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.
It took me some time to pick this book up. It was standing in my shelf for quite some time before I decided to finally give it at go. Legend is a fast-paced story that lived up to my expectations, which were - honestly - pretty high, and I´m sure as hell picking the next book in the series up soon!
The PlotThe plot is actually quite simple. There is June, a young girl that is the top student/soldier of the government. She got a perfect score on her test, which granted her access to an elite school and a bright future. Then there is Day, the most wanted criminal in the whole world, who failed his test. In a fateful night Day breaks into a hospital to steal plague treatments for his family when he is stopped by a young soldier. At the end of the night this soldier is dead and it was June´s brother. June is determined to find her brothers´ killer and everyone is sure that is was Day. Now it is June´s task to catch the governments most wanted criminal and she is in the middle of her mission, when she starts to have doubts...what if the whole system isn´t so perfect after all? And was it really Day that killed her brother?
The Legend recipe: A crippled society, a disease, a top soldier, a criminal and an inevitable love. Tadaaaa!
Author Marie Lu did a great job with her characters. All of them are believable and well developed. The character that you will love instantly is Day. He is the bad boy, who does act on good intentions and gets punished for it. I liked him from the start.
Then there is June and with her this is a whole different story. I did not like her from the start, but instead felt a small resentment towards her. She is a protected and spoiled girl that acts just like that in the beginning. She is not a bad person, don´t get me wrong, but she is so focused on the things the government tells her that she doesn´t even doubt the system one bit before things go down. I began to like her when she finally meets Day and when she finally has the courage and will to look behind the lies everyone told her.
What I truly loved about this book were the side characters. I adored Day´s family for their loving natures and their will to survive in a corrupt society. Especially Day´s brother is a believable character, because he truly acts like the big brother he is.
In most dystopias it takes me a while to get to know the world and the rules the society plays by, but that wasn´t the problem with Legend. That is probably the case, because the world that is described is very similar to our world - with a few very imperfect qualities, of course. It could actually happen like that, I believe. A disease that keeps the common people in fear and check and a test at age 10 that decides which course your life will take.
I´m aware that this is not a very unique idea at times like this, but it is a well-written concept that had me glued to the pages.
I really enjoyed Legend, I really did. It was an entertaining read that I devoured in no time. Still, I missed something and I can´t really grasp what that is. Maybe it is the love story that felt a little forced or rushed to me... What I can say is that I will surely continue this series, because it is a really great dystopia with lots of great characters.
The Yearning Mermaid says: "If you are a fan of dystopias then there is no way around Legend! The fast-paced story will keep you well occupied for a few hours!"