Defiance by C.J. Redwine
It always takes me a while to compose myself after reading this series. There are so many things I like and absolutely nothing I don’t. This is one of my favorite trilogies and C.J. Redwine is one of my favorite authors.
Publisher’s Description: Within the walls of Baalboden, beneath the shadow of the city’s brutal leader, Rachel Adams has a secret. While other girls sew dresses, host dinner parties, 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 boy who handed her heart right back to her. Left with nothing but 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.
Possible spoilers beyond this point.
Defiance is set in a post-apocalyptic world destroyed by the “Cursed One,” a leviathan type of creature that lives underground. Though details within the story suggest it is set in present time, the world itself is thrown back into the dark ages. Great civilizations have been transformed into “city-states” which are far and few between once used to be states and larger cities. Technology is rare to find – cars have been replaced with carriages, for example – and knowledge, at least within the main city of Baalboden in this first book, is limited. It makes for a world with deep secrets and even more dangerous enemies.
Rachel Adams narrates part of the story and Logan McEntire tells the other half. Rachel is a strong, independent, and emotionally-driven girl trapped in a world where she’s told what to do, where to go, and what she can know pretty much 24/7. It makes for a fabulous set up when we’re introduced to Logan (who has my heart forever) who’s the incredibly intelligent and yet awkward boy who once broke Rachel’s heart. Throughout the story, each perspective gives an insight to the way both characters think – and as their world begins to crumble, they realize just how badly they need each other.
In an adventurous tale, we begin with the introduction of the Commander, and Rachel’s most trusted friend, Oliver. Rachel’s father has been missing, lost during a courier mission. Presumed dead, the Commander insists Rachel’s guardianship be transferred onto someone new. Though it was supposed to be Oliver – to both Rachel and Logan’s surprise, the protectorship falls on Logan instead. And so begins their story. Rachel is determined to prove her father is still alive and wants to search for him. Logan also wants to find him but keep Rachel safe. Tensions of the heart arise, both characters wanting to find Jared in their own ways – but when disaster strikes in the worst way, the two finally get past their issues and work together. Only the plan fails and things get worse. Separated, Rachel must fight her way through a treacherous world outside the walls of Baalboden where empowered women are mistrusted, alongside a stranger with an agenda of his own. An imprisoned Logan must find a way to escape and find Rachel. As each fights through the wilderness battling the “Cursed One” and their own personal demons, it becomes a race of time in a world where everything and anything is betting against their survival.
This story has breathtaking romance as each character grows with every encounter, even when they’re trying to tear the other down. Logan and Rachel simply shine like diamonds and I love reading as their story unfolds. The emotion in this book goes from humor to sadness in seconds and hardcore fight scenes to tender romantic nights. Defiance is a rollercoaster of adventure, told with beautiful writing with characters readers can truly fall in love with. I give this book a SHINY FIVE.
If you like this book…