Champion, a review

Champion by Marie Lu is the last book in the Legend trilogy (or at least the original trilogy, I think Lu has added more books to the series) which is a YA dystopian looking at the balances of power and corruption.

The blurb on the front of my copy says that the series “blows the socks off the Hunger Games” and I don’t quite agree with that, but it’s definitely a fun series and one that you should totally pick up if you’re in the YA age bracket. I would’ve loved this when I was a little younger and I still did enjoy it now.

It’s a really interesting take on dictators and capitalism that I didn’t expect from the series, there are a lot of nuanced discussions that delve into the intricacies of different political powers and the impacts of capitalism on a society. I enjoyed that the series didn’t simply go for the basic discussion, and this depth is really ramped up in this final book.

Because this is a YA novel there is, of course, relationship drama. It has its faults, but it’s not awful and I did actually really enjoy how the resolution came about. It wasn’t as unrealistic and fairy-tale like as a lot of other YA fiction. I think Lu should be given credit for how she utilises standard tropes and expectations and yet adds diversity to this representation.

On CAWPILE I rated this: Characters: 7, Atmosphere: 6, Writing: 6, Plot: 7, Intrigue: 7, Logic: 7, and Enjoyment: 7 which gives a score of 6.71 and a 3.5* rating.

It’s not the best book I’ve ever read, but it is a solid YA dystopian that I’d happily recommend to any teens. I don’t think I’ll be continuing with the extra books in the series however. The original trilogy is enough for me.

Highlight here for trigger warnings: death, violence, gun violence, medical content, grief, war, murder, terminal illness, medical trauma, child abuse, emotional abuse, physical abuse, torture, police brutality, colonisation, classism.

Have you read this series, or anything else by Marie Lu? What did you think? I’ve still got Warcross on my tbr, as well as the Young Elites trilogy!

City of Glass by Cassandra Clare | A Review

I did it! I read the complete first trilogy of The Mortal Instruments! This definitely wasn’t on purpose, but I read City of Ashes and just knew that I wanted to continue on with the story (and seeing as I read City of Bones in 2018 I didn’t want to lose that motivation!). It is obvious that this was intended to be the end of the series, as everything is wrapped up in a nice little bow. However, if you didn’t know by now, my opinion of this series is that it’s trash YA (and that I’m trash along with it) so the nice little bow felt right! And don’t worry, this is a spoiler free review.

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In this book we finally get to see things coming together. The character development across the previous two books has left these characters actually forming relationships with one another (not always friendships!) and the way in which this then impacts the storyline is really well done.

Having them finally visiting this city that they’ve mentioned so many times was a lot of fun and I enjoy the different ways that we get to learn about the city from the various perspectives and locations that people are in.

There was a BIG shock reveal in this book, but from the rampant spoilers on the internet I had already known about it! It just made me impatient to want to get to it! But it did make the pre-reveal sections read differently in my head than they would have been. I’m kinda fine with it having been spoilt.

There does seem to be a lack of development in the female characters compared to the males. I know so much more about the boys, and that’s saying something considering that our main character Clary is a girl. She still feels a little two dimensional (I would say one but she’s at least improved a little) compared to the four dimensional Jace or Simon. I did love Izzy in this book though, vastly more than previously.

Overall, this was a fun, if not particularly well written book. But I still do intend to carry on with these series’ and will be reading the first Infernal Devices book next!! (I’ve been told that’s a good order to go in). I do still hope that the quality of the writing, and the development of the female characters, improves, but the story itself is a lot of fun.