July 1, 2012

Book review: Blood Red Road by Moira Young

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Saba has spent her whole life in Silverlake, a dried-up wasteland ravaged by constant sandstorms. The Wrecker civilization has long been destroyed, leaving only landfills for Saba and her family to scavenge from. That's fine by her, as long as her beloved twin brother Lugh is around. But when a monster sandstorm arrives, along with four cloaked horsemen, Saba's world is shattered. Lugh is captured, and Saba embarks on an epic quest to get him back.

Suddenly thrown into the lawless, ugly reality of the world outside of desolate Silverlake, Saba is lost without Lugh to guide her. So perhaps the most surprising thing of all is what Saba learns about herself: she's a fierce fighter, an unbeatable survivor, and a cunning opponent. And she has the power to take down a corrupt society from the inside. Teamed up with a handsome daredevil named Jack and a gang of girl revolutionaries called the Free Hawks, Saba stages a showdown that will change the course of her own civilization.

Rating: 5 stars (out of 5)

This book was recommended to me by GoodReads, and I'm glad it did. I loved it. It's one of the top three books I've read this year. If I could use only one word to describe how Blood Red Road was written, it would be fluid. The prose just flows, as does the action. At no point in reading the book do I remember being bored. Moira Young wrote the book from Saba's point of view, and while her dialect and lack of proper punctuation threw me at first, once I got used to reading it, the rest of the book went quickly.

Without giving away too much of the plot, I enjoyed how each scene in the story led to the next. The characters were also engaging for the most part. I felt sympathy for Saba, her sister, and Jack. Even the Free Hawks. In some ways, Blood Red Road reminded me of the Chaos Walking trilogy, but better. It's what I hoped the Chaos Walking books could have been.

As with many books in this genre, there is an element of romance in Blood Red Road. However, unlike some other books, the relationship between Saba and Jack seemed to happen naturally. As a reader, I knew there would be sparks, but it felt like their bond made sense to the plot. It wasn't forced, and it didn't make you think the author put it there because there had to be romance.

The only unfavorable thing I can say about this book is the dialect it was written in. For me, it took a while to get used to. At the beginning of the book, I kept pausing to understand what was written, but once I got the hang of it, I think the dialect actually made the story flow better.

I highly recommend Blood Red Road. There's a sequel coming out in October, and I can't wait to read it.

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