Monday 6 May 2013

Review -- Prodigy by Marie Lu


Title: Prodigy
Author: Marie Lu
Series: Legend (2)
Publisher: Putnam Juvenile
Release Date: 29 January 2013
Date Read: April 2013
Rating: ★★★★★

June and Day arrive in Vegas just as the unthinkable happens: the Elector Primo dies, and his son Anden takes his place. With the Republic edging closer to chaos, the two join a group of Patriot rebels eager to help Day rescue his brother and offer passage to the Colonies. They have only one request—June and Day must assassinate the new Elector.

It’s their chance to change the nation, to give voice to a people silenced for too long.

But as June realizes this Elector is nothing like his father, she’s haunted by the choice ahead. What if Anden is a new beginning? What if revolution must be more than loss and vengeance, anger and blood—what if the Patriots are wrong?

Well, then. That was just... Far out... Yeah.

I was putting off reading Prodigy because Legend was a so-so read for me, just another dystopian novel riding the Hunger Games high. Why bother with the second one if Legend wasn't even anything to get too excited about? I had heard, of course, that Prodigy surpasses its predecessor in every single way but I was still doubtful. It was the pessimist in me talking. If like me, you still don't want to be convinced by almost everyone says, then listen to me now. Prodigy is everything Legend wasn't and more.

The world-building is improved ten-fold. There's more information on the Republic itself, its history, the revolutionaries- the Patriots- and the world outside it- the Colonies and other governments in function. The dystopia has to be obviously more than just the oppressive Republic and Lu showed that. There was hardly any info-dumping and if there was, it was done with clever use of dialogue to integrate the world-building seamlessly.
"Remember who the enemy is"
But how can you be sure who the enemy is? June and Day try to navigate the between the politics and loyalties of the Patriots and the Republic to understand where they should put their trust. Everyone's keeping secrets and it doesn't help the fact that old habits, and tendencies, die hard. June still has a lingering loyalty to the Republic she's been taught to serve and protect her whole life. June was probably my favourite character in this installment. Her uncertainty about the Republic and her identity made for a very interesting read and a realistic character. June struggled to come out of being brainwashed her whole life, and think for herself for once, not just blindly following someone else's orders. Day, on the other hand, has hated the Republic, everything it is and stood for, since he was a kid. He's not so open to new ideas, to the idea that maybe this time, for the first time, someone in the Republic is for the people, not against them.

Another aspect Lu greatly developed was Day and June's relationship. They were in the honeymoon phase in Legend. Now they actually have to work on being a couple, on being in a relationship. Reality has caught up. Do they really love each other? They've only each other for less than a month. How much are they willing to sacrifice for each other? Future, home, safety- is it all worth giving up? June and Day aren't all that comfortable with each other either. They lack the comfort in communication that Day and Tess, or June and Anden, have that comes with having known someone for a long time. Plus, Day and June come from completely different worlds. I thoroughly enjoyed reading about the possibilities they entertained in being with someone else instead. It was obvious Day and June were going to end up in the end but that doesn't mean the path has to be straight and narrow.

Like Legend, the novel's narration is split between the June and Day. I can't exactly remember if I enjoyed the multiple point of views in the first one, but I definitely did in Prodigy. It's a great advantage in seeing and understand how different the main characters' personalities are. It also adds to the richness of the storytelling. I loved the quick pace. The heart-pounding-shallow-breaths-anticipation-is-going-to-be-the-death-of-me-I-swear-to-God feeling was present throughout the whole novel. There's plenty of action- explosions, fights, etc but the scenes without the actual fighting still managed to make me want to turn page after page after page. I couldn't read fast enough! Sometimes, I caught myself just quickly skimming because I wanted to get to the next bit already. Then I'd chide myself for skimming, cause not cool, Katrina! Especially if it's as good as this. So I would go back to where I started reading too fast and enjoy every little bit of the story.

I know I had nothing to do with the making of this book but I'm just so damn proud of Lu. It's so satisfying to see her grow into the fantastic author she's proven herself to be. I can't wait to see what she's got for us in Champion. (The cover looks amazing, by the way. It was released while I reading it so that was cool.) If it's even a smidgen like Prodigy, you can bet your tongue it will be spectacular.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...