Welcome back everyone! I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas break! I am surprised to say I got no books this year for Christmas, thus far anyways. I did need some car parts which I needed so I am okay with that plus I got some gift cards though which are basically books in waiting. I also placed another Bookoutlet order. 2016 is fast approaching, I can’t believe 2015 is almost over. But today as the only review for this week I wanted to share my thoughts on the start of a series I will be finishing up start of the New Year if things go right and the first book is Defiance by C.J. Redwine.
Rating: 5 Stars
Defiance takes place in a world full of city-states where women are trained to sew and dance and are unable to go anywhere without a male protector. Outside the walls there is the Wasteland and a monster that can’t be killed. Rachel isn’t like other girls, her father raised her to track and hunt and she doesn’t want a protector, she’d rather have a sparring partner. However, when her father doesn’t come home from his courier mission and is declared dead she is assigned a new protector, until she is of age to be claimed by a husband of course, none other than her father’s apprentice and boy she confessed to love some time ago, Logan. Rachel knows in her bones her father is alive and she will do anything to find him even if she has to do it herself. Together this pair with a history journey through the Wasteland and are faced with the monster, trained assassins, and pretty much everyone wanting them dead. Oh and there is the whole pesky hurt feelings still lingering between them, what could go wrong?
I really enjoyed this book. It caught me by surprise as I didn’t know much about it when I started just that it had been out for a while and I liked the simple yet striking covers. Baalboden was not my kind of place. The role of a female was not something I enjoyed and found myself scoffing at every person who talked about it being the proper way marking them on my list of ‘okay if they die’ through the series. Come on I know I can’t be the only one who thinks about characters as I read them and sort through in my mind, especially if it’s a book where death is a likely event for some, and wonder if I would be okay with them dying or will it be hard to cope. Some people swap back and forth all the time based on their actions but still. At any rate the Commander of their city-state is so far past okay with and please die category. Not just for being the ruler and enforcer of such a system that treat women as little more than pets to cook, clean, and breed, but other more substantia reasons. Can you tell I wouldn’t do well in this type of society and probably why I don’t read many historical novels?
Maybe this is why I love Rachel and her father. He didn’t agree with that notion of the world and he taught his daughter better than that. She is strong and fierce rather than meek and shy. I love how head strong she is, in a world where women don’t have the option she was sheltered in a way and allowed to have her own opinions and given voice to share them and develop a quick wit, which may or may not be a good thing in some instances. Then we have Logan who was taken in by this same caring man and given a job and purpose and a new kind of family. He sees Rachel for who she really is, not who she must pretend to be in society. Where Rachel is headstrong and ready to rush into danger with determination and passion he is just as stubborn but more meticulous in wanting to have a plan. They are balances to one another, yin and yang.
The story is a journey to overcome and fight the oppression and who doesn’t love that kind of story. Plus there is plenty of action as monsters, assassins and such keep everyone on their toes. The batter is both internal and external. Both characters we see through are faced with battles on both fronts. The world they live in in flushed out in a way I felt like I understood their life and their motivations. I really enjoyed the book as a whole and was excited to continue on. I didn’t marathon through one after the other, but not for lack of desire, just that I was reading with a friend and that was worth waiting a bit to continue on. We plan to finish the last book in the trilogy at the start of the year. Defiance has everything a good fantasy should have in my opinion, a well thought out world, interesting characters, and an intriguing story arch that builds. I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.
Until next time…