Marie Lu is the author of the #1 New York Times bestselling series The Young Elites,
as well as the blockbuster bestselling Legend series. She graduated from the
University of Southern California and jumped into the video game industry as an
artist and art director. Now a full-time writer, she lives in Los Angeles, California,
where she spends her spare time reading, drawing, playing games, and getting stuck
A broken world.
An overwhelming evil.
A team of warriors ready to strike back.
Talin is a Striker, a member of an elite fighting force that stands as the last defense for the only free nation in the world: Mara.
A refugee, Talin knows firsthand the horrors of the Federation, a world-dominating war machine responsible for destroying nation after nation with its terrifying army of mutant beasts known only as Ghosts.
But when a mysterious prisoner is brought from the front to Mara’s capital, Talin senses there’s more to him than meets the eye. Is he a spy from the Federation? What secrets is he hiding?
Only one thing is clear: Talin is ready to fight to the death alongside her fellow Strikers for the only homeland she has left . . . with or without the boy who might just be the weapon to save—or destroy—them all.
Thank you libro.fm for the advanced listening copy in exchange for my review.
Thoughts and Themes: This is the first Marie Lu book that I have read, while I have wanted to rea her other books I just haven’t got to it yet. After reading this one though I really want to go back and read her other works. This is one that I had tried to listen to on audio but had to put down since I had other books that I had to get through. I am glad that I came back to this one though and followed along with the e-book. I don’t think I would’ve been able to stick with this book if it wasn’t on audio though because there were parts that I was confused by and had to go back and listen to again.
I really enjoyed this book and the world building in it. I liked learning about the different types of people in this world and the strikers, and shields. I liked the relationships that these two types had and why the relationship was built that way. While the premise of human experimenting is something that I have read before, I think this was done differently. I think that when you put all the pieces of this story together, it becomes something new that I hadn’t read before.
The cover was made a lot prettier as I read the book and understood the cover. I didn’t see a part of the cover until I was halfway through the book and then looked at it again and was amazed. This was a cover that I had to look at several times because the meaning behind each piece comes alive as you read the story.
Something I really enjoyed about this story was the use of signing as the main way that Talin was able to communicate with others. I liked how she uses sign to communicate with others and then finds another way to communicate with Red. I also really enjoyed learning her reason for being mute and seeing how her past affected her ability to speak.
I really liked learning about Red and the reasons that he was produced. I liked learning about how Ghosts were created and why they were created. I thought that this portion of the book was really interesting and I wanted to hear more about this. I liked learning about the federation and how they played into the whole story and how they played into Talin’s past.
Characters: Throughout this story you get to meet several characters but there are four main characters in this story, Talin, Red, Adena, and Jeran. The characters didn’t feel too flushed out and the story relied mostly on plot rather than the characters so I don’t have much to say about them.
I really wanted to learn more about Red and see more of who he is. I felt that we didn’t get enough of him and the relationship between him and Talin just developed out of nowhere. I wanted to see more the build up to this and while we did get the back story between them, I would have wanted more of his personality fleshed out.
I really enjoyed learning about Talin and her past and listening as her story unfolds. While I enjoyed learning about her past and seeing her go through the book, I wasn’t too attached to her character. I was more attached with the relationships that she had with the other characters and how those would be affected by her actions.
Writing Style: This story is told in first person through the perspective of our main character, Talin. I listened to this one in audio so I also want to comment on the narrator and how was it was to listen to. I loved the pacing of each action scene and how that pace quickens and then fades back to a normal pace for the rest of the story. I liked that I was able to listen to the story at 2x the speed and still understand what was happening. The audiobook also included a question and answer with the author which I enjoyed as you get to know more about the book and her decisions behind some scenes.