61t9jwddgyl-_sx326_bo1204203200_Title:  Legend
Series:  Legend #1
Author:  Marie Lu
Publisher:  Speak (an imprint of Penguin – YA books)
Agent:  Kristin Nelson

June is a prodigy. Everyone is impressed when she’s reported as the first and only person to earn a perfect score in her Trial. She takes the fast track through her education and can’t wait to get into the field and help the military achieve its goals in the war against the Patriots and the Colonies. Her first mission is to take down Day, a mysterious and highly sought after criminal who has been accused of a variety of crimes against the Republic, not the least of which is the murder of June’s brother. June goes undercover to find Day and bring him to justice. It isn’t very long before June is forced to question everything she’s been taught by the Republic.

Day’s family thinks he’s dead. It’s safer for them that way. If he gets an opportunity to foul things up for the Republic in a non-violent way, he’ll take it. He wouldn’t want them to be punished for that. Ordinarily, Day is extremely careful with his plots, but when his younger brother is taken ill with the plague, Day is forced to act quickly. His attempt to steal a cure from a local hospital sparks a series of events that will change his life. And being hunted by a disguised Republic officer doesn’t help matters. Especially as he finds himself so attracted to her.

Legend is a story about loss, blame, learning to question absolute truths, falling in love and making hard choices. There were so many things that worked in this novel. Lu has created characters that I can identify with. June is coming of age, learning to trust in herself and to question what has always been spoon fed to her as truth. Day has endured a great deal of tragedy, yet retains a deeply noble character. I really want him to succeed and to finally see justice win out.

The tension and stakes were well done in this story. June and Day always go from the frying pan into the fire. I think what made it work so well is that I wanted the same thing for both of them, but for different reasons. I wanted June to realize the danger she was in as she learned more of the truth about the Republic. I wanted Day to prevail against the evil that the Republic had done to his family.

I’m most looking forward to learning about the dystopian society in the next book, Prodigy. I have really only seen a bit of what the Patriots are like and I’m curious to see how the Republic’s depiction of the Colonies differs from reality.