Author: Marie Lu
Publisher: Putnam Juv
Publication Date: Nov 2011
Classification: YA Novel
Summary from Goodreads:
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.
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.
Full of nonstop action, suspense, and romance, this novel is sure to move readers as much as it thrills.
I wasn’t sure if I was going to like this story when I first heard all the hype for it in 2011. I wanted to read it right away back then but the hype put me off of the story for a very long time. It wasn’t until I was at the library looking for a new audio book to listen to on my way to school and back that I decided to give this book a chance, since so many people loved it how bad could it be.
I’m happy to say the characters sucked me in from the very beginning. I instantly wanted the backstories on both June and Day. June was a strong female lead, which I love in YA, who wasn’t afraid to go out there and try to make a name for herself. She was out for revenge and nothing was going to stand in her way of catching the criminal she was out to get. Little did she know her “criminal” was a boy named Day who I fell in love with from page one. He is strong, kind, has a big heart, and yet knows how cruel his world really is. He is everything I want in a male character and I need more of him even after finishing this book.
The plot lines also were amazing to me. I loved some of the twists and turns and the fact that the author used pieces of history in such a unique idea. Add to this the fact that Johnny’s major is history in school so him and I talk about it a lot on our own it was very interesting to see Lu’s take on how history will move in the future and how that will be such an important piece in the future. I loved seeing the Republic of California against the Patriots and rebels in the city. Everything was so real and complex it felt wonderful. The only part of the plot I didn’t like was the ending was a bit easy to figure out. After all the complex plot lines that started the book the ending seemed just a little too easy for me.
Overall, I’m really glad I took the time to finally read…or listen to as the case was… this book. It offered up a lot that was lacking in other YA reads of the same genre and it was a great book that I wanted to jump in my car just to listen to more of it.
The audio was a nice clean sounding audio that didn’t grate on my nerves. However, there was nothing overly fancy about it and the characters voices were nice but not wowing like some other narrators that I have listened to in the past.