Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Review: Defy

Defy by Sara B. Larson
Publication Date: January 7th, 2014
Publisher: Scholastic
Genre: YA Fantasy
A lush and gorgeously written debut, packed with action, intrigue, and a thrilling love triangle.

Alexa Hollen is a fighter. Forced to disguise herself as a boy and serve in the king's army, Alex uses her quick wit and fierce sword-fighting skills to earn a spot on the elite prince's guard. But when a powerful sorcerer sneaks into the palace in the dead of night, even Alex, who is virtually unbeatable, can't prevent him from abducting her, her fellow guard and friend Rylan, and Prince Damian, taking them through the treacherous wilds of the jungle and deep into enemy territory.

The longer Alex is held captive with both Rylan and the prince, the more she realizes that she is not the only one who has been keeping dangerous secrets. And suddenly, after her own secret is revealed, Alex finds herself confronted with two men vying for her heart: the safe and steady Rylan, who has always cared for her, and the dark, intriguing Damian. With hidden foes lurking around every corner, is Alex strong enough to save herself and the kingdom she's sworn to protect?

Defy was a mess. Before we go in, let me clear one thing up. Normally, I love High Fantasy novels. However, in my opinion, Defy was a terrible addition to my favorite genre. I really wish I could have enjoyed this story more.

The first thing I disliked about this novel was our main character, Alexa. This is a girl that is supposed to be tough. She is masquerading as a boy for heaven’s sake! And not even just a boy... a soldier who fights! Sadly, I found Alexa the opposite of tough. She seemed to need to be saved at every corner and she is constantly swooning over her two love interests instead of thinking of more important things. Like, you know, the COMING WAR! 

Speaking of the two love interests, I have to say that I really don’t understand what was so special about either of them. Prince Damian seemed to switch personalities every second, and all I remember about Ryland is that Alexa is obsessed with describing his eyes. Sadly, they were both boring and I honestly do not care which one Alexa ends up with at the end of this series. 

Finally, what annoyed me most was how the romance and small drama happening with Alexa took center stage. I wanted some good world-building! How about a memorable cast of UNIQUE secondary characters? Even the writing in Defy was subpar. 

Overall, Alexa was not the tough heroine I wanted her to be. She turned out to be crying, blushing mess who had two boring guys fighting over her, confessing their deep feelings, and all that jazz. There was a lack of world building, and the characters lacked originality and depth. I would not recommend picking up Defy. 

1/5 Stars

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