Saturday, 30 November 2013

Review: Defy by Sara B. Larson

This was a fabulous book! An action-adventure read with a strong female heroine, a sexy and spoiled prince, magic, and sword-fighting. The book is reminiscent of Disney's Mulan in the sense that Alexa/Alex disguises herself as a boy to survive; for a chance at fighting for a better life. It is a very dark story that is handled very well for the young audience. The story COULD have been darker and written for an older audience, but it works well as it is.

The book is made up of dark themes such as assassination, rape, violence, abuse, death, and war. This book is like a more tame version of Game of Thrones so it's a good choice if readers aren't old enough for the graphic nature of the television show. It's full of action and excitement, and from the moment you know the risk Alexa takes by disguising herself as a man, the suspense is gripping. I was on the edge of my seat --Larson keeps you guessing. Does Damian know she's a girl? What is going on with Tanoori (and why is this the only non-medieval-y name in the book?!). Who is the masked man?

Another interesting point is the fact that magic is evil--the black arts. Today, the supernatural is likened to an attractive quality so the fact that Defy twists magic into something frightening, dangerous, and dark is a refreshing change.

Alexa kicks ASS. She is the best fighter and strategist that the royal family has. If her skills aren't enough to rank her up there with Hermione and Katniss, Alexa has lost everything, but achieved so much in her short life. She's a survivor--like Katniss. She doesn't need a man to take care of her or to rescue her. She literally fights her own battles and she's as good as [if not better than] a man. I also enjoyed the fact that she knows her place in the world. Unlike so many other heroines who strive for and achieve their place in a higher realm (ie. human to be a vampire, commoner to a princess), she wants to be herself--someone she hasn't been since she changed herself into a man. This is a girl who puts the country's needs ahead of her own wants and desires. This a girl who has been forced to mature quickly and who has to take care of herself. This is a girl who makes a surprising choice in love.

Overall, Defy is an amazing read. Fast-paced, thrilling, and addictive. It will be published on January 1, 2014.

No comments:

Post a Comment