Defiance by C.J. Redwine
Paperback, 403 pages
Expected publication: 6th September 2012 by Atom
When Rachel’s father goes missing, she is desperate to search for him. But her attempts to flee the city bring her to the attention of its overbearing ruler. His efforts to control her make the world within the walls seem as dangerous as that outside.
Her only chance at escape is Logan. Once her father’s apprentice, and now her only protector, he feels that helping her might mean losing her completely. But if he can put his feelings aside, they might be able to save more than Rachel’s father. They might be able to break down the walls, and set their people free.
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My thanks go to Atom for sending me this book in exchange for an honest review.
Picking up this book, I wasn't all that sure what to expect. I tried to avoid all of the hype around Defiance as 1. I wasn't sure if I it would be for me and 2. I didn't want to be disappointed if I did decide to pick it up. Well, I did pick it up and I imagine that could've read all the rave reviews for it and still loved it. I really, really enjoyed this book from start to finish. It can be difficult to find a new, interesting concept these days, but C.J. Redwine has thought of a great concept and executed it well.
Defiance has a strange setting. Though it's set in a somewhat dystopian future, to me it felt more like a medieval, historical setting, with a bit of a twist. This book is written in two points of view, of Rachel and of Logan. Our protagonists live in Baalboden, a walled city to supposedly protect them from 'The Cursed One' - a dragon-like, murderous creature. Rachel's father, Jared, is a tracker and so has left Baalboden, but unfortunately he hasn't returned. Each woman must have a protector until she is 18 and 'Chosen', and when Jared goes missing, not only is Rachel left without a father, but she is left without a protector too. Unexpectedly, Jared's apprentice, Logan, is appointed to look after her. At first, this isn't good news for Rachel and she decides that she must go and find her father. All of the fun starts there...
The plot of Defiance unfolds at a good pace. I got a good feel of the setting and atmosphere quite easily - I never thought that such a setting could captivate me, but it did. Whilst this is quite an eventful book, it wasn't too much and things didn't go too fast. The plot was surprisingly complex, with twists and turns that really pulled me into the story, making me want to keep reading on and to discover more. I never got bored whilst reading this book - it was captivating, a true page-turner.
The characters felt solid to me right from the start, yet still had a sort of hidden mystery behind them. Rachel, our main character is a likeable heroine - she is very, very determined and strong, yet still has a realistic vulnerability. She isn't the perfect heroine, but she tries to be the best person that she can be. I loved Logan as soon as we met him (probably due to the fact he's named Logan) and grew to like him even more as the book progressed. He's moody, he's clever, he's protective but not in a restrictive way. I also really liked meeting the other more minor characters and seeing what they brought to the story, which was a surprising amount. I particularly liked the whimsical nature of the tree people, Willow and Quinn.
As you can tell by now, I really, really enjoyed this book. The ending of this one really excited me - I think the setting in the next book will be even more effective. I really can't I can't wait to get reacquainted with Rachel and Logan and see what happens next!