Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
Day and June have been through a lot. Now they must undergo even more difficulties as they maneuver a world immersed in turmoil, overcome hate, face doubts, and figure out whom to trust. Things get more complicated when Day and June are forced to reexamine everything they believed and put their faith in each other.
Review:This is a review of an uncorrected advanced galley of Prodigy. There may be changes in the final printed book.
As the sequel to Marie Lu’s stunningly engrossing debut novel Legend, Prodigy faces the difficult task of trying to live up to very high expectations. Fortunately, Prodigy delivers. Everything that was to love in Legend comes back with a vengeance. Prodigy is action-packed, suspenseful, well-crafted, compelling, and poignant.
Like Legend, Prodigy is told through switching points of view, and once again Marie Lu succeeds in balancing two separate and gripping narrators. The powerful voices of the main characters give the novel a distinct style and convincing tone. The narrators’ succinct, yet detailed and moving way of narrating lends the story an emotional pull that makes the novel meaningful and effective: “I know I’ve been dreaming, but all I remember is a lingering feeling of dread, of something horrible lurking behind a locked door.” Lu’s ability to create complex and realistic characters makes it impossible not to become emotionally invested. Readers will be filled with suspense and unease as they follow the exciting and sometimes painful developments.
All of the characters in Prodigy are realistic and well-developed. The characters we met in Legend become even more defined and the new characters are just as convincing. The relationship between Day and June matures and adds emotional tension. The novel manages to balance the love story with fast-paced action sequences. Day and June continue to open their eyes to their internal and external realities. While getting better acquainted with the Republic’s corruption, they are also getting to know themselves. Both characters have grown and face even bigger problems. The conflicts they face will keep readers on the edge of their seats.
Marie Lu masterfully develops her characters and unleashes the full force of the conflicts that envelop them. In Legend, Marie Lu pulled no punches and in Prodigy, she continues to embrace the world she has created. She is not afraid to torture her characters. Her faithful depiction of a dystopian world gives the novel a realist and vulnerable tone that pulls the reader deeper into the story. Prodigy provides a fuller view of the world Day and June inhabit. The reader gets to see more of the Republic and even gets the opportunity to see it from the perspective of the outer world. Day and June discover what lies outside the confines of the Republic, and things are not what they expected.
Marie Lu intricately weaves an exciting story and provides instances of profound beauty. Moments of heart-pounding action and heart-wrenching emotion carry you towards an unexpected and powerful conclusion. Without a doubt, Prodigy is a brilliant and thrilling sequel to Legend. It will exceed expectations and leave readers clamoring for the third installment of the series. Prodigy is sure to be one of the best books of 2013.
About Marie Lu, courtesy of marielu.org:
Marie Lu was born in China in 1984 (perhaps a sign of dystopian stories to come), and moved from Beijing to Baton Rouge, Louisiana, in the same year the Tiananmen Square massacre happened. Eventually she and her parents settled down in Sugar Land, Texas—which she still considers her hometown.
She finished her first novel when she was 15 years old, but it took her second manuscript to acquire a literary agent. When that manuscript didn’t sell either, she went off to college in Los Angeles and wrote two more. Although those still didn’t sell, one of them did get her the amazing literary agent Kristin Nelson, who sold her fifth manuscript, the dystopian young adult novel LEGEND, to Putnam Children’s/Penguin USA, at auction in a major deal. Legend was released on November 29, 2011 as Putnam Children’s and Penguin Young Readers Group’s lead title. Legend is Marie’s debut novel.
Marie graduated in 2006 from USC and currently resides in Los Angeles, where she spends her time stuck in traffic.
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