Author: C.J Redwine
Publisher: Baltzer + Bray
Release Date: August 28th
Buy from: [ Amazon | The Book Depository ]
While other girls sew dresses, host dinner parties, and obey their male Protectors, Rachel knows how to survive in the wilderness and deftly wield a sword. When her father, Jared, fails to return from a courier mission and is declared dead, the Commander assigns Rachel a new Protector, her father’s apprentice, Logan—the same boy Rachel declared her love for two years ago, and the same boy who handed her heart right back to her...
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The huge scary thing is a dragon…right?
The two words that best describe my feelings after reading DEFIANCE are bittersweet confusion. First I would like to point out that it took me awhile to realize “the Cursed One” was actually a dragon. Call me slow but they never actually call the creature a dragon. I guess it was up for the readers to figure it out and I got it like halfway through the story. The thing flies (I think), it breathes out fire, it’s huge enough to cause everyone in the entire continent to fear it and build huge walls to keep it out. Yeah, sounds pretty dragon-ish to me. Once I figured out the whole dragon thing I got this medieval feel of the book, but then at the same time I got a steam-punkish feel from all the talk about technology. I guess in the end the only real genre I’m sure I could put a label on this is fantasy.
Rachel is a fiery character with equally fiery red hair and a desire to wield a weapon and fight. She is not at all concerned with being the average Baalbooden girl like the evil commander wants her to be. I read this book shortly after watching the Disney movie Brave so she pretty much looked like Merida to me the entire novel. Logan is the guy who (sort of) turned her down when she confessed to him one day. I feel like the whole I-hate-you-cause-you-rejected-me vibe readers get from the beginning of the book is completely overrated once you actually read how things really went down. The first huge turning point of the novel is when things started to slow down for me. The beginning was like an adrenaline rush (meaning I read it pretty quickly without putting it down) and then it just…stopped. Then finally when I made it to the end it was all types of confusion and abruptness. So many things happened in the last chapter that could’ve been spanned out a little more or even carried onto the next book.
My feelings for DEFIANCE are pretty split. It started off great, with characters I found interesting and a world I was keen on learning more about. Heck, I was even fascinated by the descriptions of the gadgets and took joy in reading those. Then towards the end….the excitement sort of fizzled out. I have always had troubles with books that pull what I call the “Deathly Hallows” trick over the readers unless it’s necessary to the plot and makes sense. I did not feel the Deathly Hallow string of events in DEFIANCE was necessary, for the plot or for Rachel’s character development. It would have been better suited for a later books in this series. Overall, I recommend this book because I loved the first part of it, and it's nice seeing a female character who is more into saving others than being saved. To me this feels like something people will either love or shelve as a DNF.