Defy by Sara B. LarsonBefore I give my review of Defy, I wanted to give another s/o to my newest followers! I hope you enjoy my reviews! I'm on Bookdictive Reviews every day, preparing posts and changing the smallest things about the layout. I couldn't do this without you guys!
Now on to my review of Defy!
Book: Defy by Sara B. Larson
Bookdictive Categorization: YA fantasy
Rating: 5/5 stars
Procurement: Netgalley ARC
Recommend? If yes, to whom?: Absolutely! I would recommend this to any YA fantasy lovers, or even someone who just wants an fast-paced, romantic fantasy story.
"True beauty is what lies inside of us, not what the world sees. A beautiful shell that houses a vile soul becomes sullied over time. But an outer shell, imperfect as it may be, that houses a beautiful soul shines with that beauty, radiating it for all who have eyes to see."
I seriously couldn't put this book down. Even with finals, I had to finish Defy. I mean, if you're reading books from the library that haven't been checked out since 1996, you'd be wanting a break, too. But I didn't need Defy for a break. I just needed it. Defy is the YA fantasy that my soul has been longing for since Poison Study, and I am ready to be obsessed with this series (YES IT'S A SERIES, IT'S BEEN CONFIRMED)!!
Also, no spoilers abound. When I give a five star review, I'm not going to spoil anything because I want you to go read it for yourself! But just so you know, I left out a lot. ;)
Basically, this girl named Alexa loses her parents when a sorcerer comes to her village, and to prevent herself from going to the birthing houses--kind of like those depressing asylums we learn about in the Victorian era that are filthy and people get mistreated, except this is specifically to birth more children for the kingdom's army--she chops off her hair Mulan-style and pretends to be the twin brother to her twin. Now please excuse my Mulan gifs because she literally has her hair chopped off in the first chapter.
Three years later, we meet "Alex," who is a guard for Prince Damian, the asshole son of the evil king. Alex is basically a BAMF that can't be beat, and only barely missed being the captain of the guard because "he" is too young. Don't fight her, because she'll beat even the most seasoned warrior.
Surviving for this long as a dude, I don't blame Alexa for getting comfortable and rising up to a very public position in the kingdom.
Then THE CHANGE happens,
...and suddenly, she's noticing that her eyes are lingering a little too long on not just Prince Damian, but also another member of the prince's guard named Rylan.
One girl...two guys...wait, this sounds familiar...I may be awful at math but I think I can solve this...is that..is that a...DEATH TRIANGLE OF LURVE?!
"OH DIVINE BEING!" you think, ready to throw the book across the room (s/o to my #1 fan Andrea for that!). Can we ever have a book that doesn't draw this stupid shape?? It's so annoying, contrite, OVERUSED! I don't mean for all books, but in YA literature it's probably the most overused theme of all time.
Buuuuuuuuuuut you can kind of tell from the start who she's going to pick. Alexa is a smart cookie, and knows that her feelings for one of the guys isn't there. The triangle doesn't dominate the book--yes, it's a central theme, but it doesn't distract from the story. Alexa remains a BAMF and while some reviews have claimed that Alexa's guy problems are too emotional, I wasn't bothered at all. She's a TEENAGED GIRL LIVING AS A GUY, AND NOT BECAUSE SHE ACTUALLY WANTS TO. That's like complaining about Harry being too whiny in Order of the Phoenix when everything goes to complete shit. HE'S A TEENAGER. Please tell me that you'd be totally "whatever, I'm a stone cold betch" if you were in this situation. If I'm not bothered by this, then you won't be. As I always say, I'm not afraid to hate on a book, and this book doesn't deserve my wrath. The pacing is superb, it's not completely predictable, and it leaves you wanting more. I'd have loved to see more world building, but I have a feeling that there will be more in the next book. I look forward to seeing this series continue!