As I said in my What’s Up Wednesday post this week, I just finished Defiance by C.J. Redwine. It is book one in the Courier’s Daughter trilogy. Here’s the cover if you don’t know what I’m talking about:
(Which by the way I totally love this cover) but as for the book itself, it took me not even two pages of reading to instantly fall in love with C.J. Redwine’s writing voice. She is amazingly talented, and has such beautiful prose and storytelling. It painted such a vivid picture, and completely immersed me in the book. This is the first book of hers I have read, but she is definitely now one of the authors whose writing inspires me!
On the other hand, in the beginning I was a little disappointed with both the characters and the plot. Not only were the future/alternate history sci-fi main characters named Rachel Adams and Logan McEntire (yawn…but then there’s the guy named Melkin?) but they and their relationship felt flat. The beginning felt a little too much like the cliche dystopian YA–evil guy in power making their lives suck, overly stubborn and spiteful redhead hates super handsome guy but secretly attracted to him and they can’t help but fall madly in love.
Now before you dismiss the book, let me say that I actually loved it, it just took me a little while to get there. But once I got past their names and contrived relationship, I watched their characters, the story, and the plot develop. A few chapters in, I was hooked.
One thing that makes this book special to me is its girl-power themes (girls are not allowed anywhere without their male “Protectors” and cannot make their own decisions–but Rachel is brought up independent and strong-willed, and the messed up system is emphasized throughout) as well as its unique combination of sci-fi and fantasy elements. When I started the book, I pictured their world more dystopian sci-fi, but at the same time it is set in a castle, but they also have technology/inventions, and there’s a powerful magic monster that terrorizes their world, and Tree People living in the Wasteland outside their city. It sounds like an odd combination, but it completely works.
I absolutely loved the ending of this book, and am itching to get my hands on the next 🙂 Definitely worth the read!
Overall, I give this book 5 stars! (Here’s a link to my short review on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/895823331?book_show_action=false)