Defiance (Defiance #1) by C.J. Redwine
"Within the walls of Baalboden, beneath the shadow of the city's brutal leader, Rachel Adams has a secret. While other girls sew dresses and obey their male Protectors, Rachel knows how to survive in the wilderness and deftly wield a sword. When her father, Jared, fails to return from a courier mission and is declared dead, the Commander assigns Rachel a new Protector, her father's apprentice, Logan--the same boy Rachel declared her love for two years ago, and the same one who handed her heart right back to her. Left with nothing but a fierce belief in her father's survival, Rachel decides to escape and find him herself. But treason against the Commander carries a heavy price, and what awaits her in the Wasteland could destroy her.
At nineteen, Logan McEntire is many things. Orphan. Outcast. Inventor. As apprentice to the city's top courier, Logan is focused on learning his trade so he can escape the tyranny of Baalboden. But his plan never included being responsible for his mentor's impulsive daughter. Logan is determined to protect her, but when his escape plan goes wrong and Rachel pays the price, he realizes he has more at stake than disappointing Jared.
As Rachel and Logan battle their way through the Wasteland, stalked by a monster that can't be killed and an army of assassins out for blood, they discover romance, heartbreak, and a truth that will incite a war decades in the making."
I started off liking it.....
When I saw Defiance on Goodreads I knew I had to get it. I mean, this genre is my cup of tea. The overview looked really awesome with a kick-ass main character and post-apocalyptic vibe. I started off reading it and I thought it was pretty interesting. But by the end of this dry, long, and confusing book, I couldn't wait to put it down. I'm really sad to say that it didn't come to par with my expectations that I forged when I read the overview and the first chapter of the book.
One of the three main problems I had with this book was the time period and setting. At the beginning I was like "this must be medieval-post-apocalyptic type book with the clothing and architecture", but as the book went on it became less clear what it was because of all the technology they had. The author does explain some sort of disaster from the Cursed One, but there's no indication that their society was any different. Just the whole setting and time period descriptions were weird and not well put together.
The second problem I had with this book was the WHOLE plot. In the beginning, the whole adventure is started off when Rachel tries to escape after she has a meltdown when she doesn't get her way. She gets caught, and she makes a deal with the Commander that she will retrieve what her father (who was announced dead) had left behind, and she was convinced that he was alive. Now, I would understand if the whole plot was her finding her father and then rising above the Commander to give justice, but no. Magically she realizes "OH. WAIT. There was a package!!!". She admitted to the reader that it was a lie, and then the whole rest of the book, she decided the package was real! What the heck?
As Rachel and Logan wait and prepare to escape and find her father before the Commander does, they are faced with challenges. The Commander kills people, Rachel gets upset again, and the Claiming Ceremony ends in disaster. All of these events had no meaning other than to prolong the book. After the 3rd chapter it was becoming a total drag to read. None of the events felt like they had a purpose, even when Logan gets separated from Rachel and she has to leave by herself.
While Rachel and Melkin (hired by the Commander to kill her) head towards her father's safe house where the package is supposedly hidden, they encounter many problems that I won't go into detail about because of how incredibly boring and meaningless they were. Logan; who is in prison, makes some revelations and eventually escapes. As he is looking for Rachel he encounters the other province's army and kills the spy that's following Rachel. That side plot about the other province? Yeah, goes abso-freakin-lutely nowhere. Wow. Anyways, Logan and Rachel admit that they love each other on the way back to their province, and by this point I really don't care about any of the characters, so I didn't feel like it was a turning point for either of the characters.
The third and last thing I don't like about this book are the characters. Rachel was okay for the first couple of chapters. She seemed confident, stubborn in a good way, strong, and independent. I don't think I've ever been more disappointed in a heroine than in Defiance. She started getting to be a pompous ass and way to stuck in her self-importance to get past her grief and help others like she was supposedly trying to do. She got so caught up in mourning people's deaths that it made her irrational and her crude attitude pissed me off. I kind of liked Logan through out the book, but there was nothing that made him stand out over anyone else. The pair was bland and I felt it lacked the passion or like, any emotion. Rachel was so caught up in her own grief that it made me question if she was actually strong. She thought of suicide for Christ's sake! What's less of a noble, heroic act?! The dual POVs were impossible to distinguish between except for the pronouns, and either of them seemed to have any voice. I actually got confused in the second chapter as to who was speaking!
There were only two redeeming qualities to this book. One: the writing. The writing wasn't actually too bad. Other than the book flaw, it had nice flow and wasn't clogged with useless details Two: the 1st chapter. The first chapter was intriguing and made me want to know more about the culture.... we all know how that worked out. Overall, I was really disappointed in the book and I wish it were different.
2.5 out of 5 stars
P.S. First on-blog rant! Pretty happy with it.
*sigh* Ughhh here.