Monday, January 21, 2013

Review: Defiance by C.J. Redwine

From Goodreads: Within the walls of Baalboden, beneath the shadow of the city's brutal leader, Rachel Adams has a secret. While other girls sew dresses 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 one who handed her heart right back to her. Left with nothing but a 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.

My Rating: 3.5 hearts 

Thoughts on the Novel: One of the debuts from last year that I was most excited about was Defiance by C.J. Redwine. After seeing some trusted bloggers’ reviews for it though, I lowered my expectations; and as a result, was left pleased with the novel overall.

Anyway, for this review, I’ll be switching up my format to discuss what I’d seen from a few reviews before reading Defiance and whether I agree or disagree with others after having read the novel. 

What I remembered seeing from reviews: The worldbuilding could use some more work. 

My opinion: I’d have to agree because there’s very little backstory to how the existing situation in Defiance comes about. 

What I remembered seeing from reviews: The synopsis describes the personalities of Logan and Rachel quite well. 

My opinion: I liked both Rachel and Logan. Although Rachel was at times a bit too rash (e.g. she tries to leave Baalboden without much of a plan), I found her to be a strong heroine that was very capable of defending herself. She’s definitely someone I’d want on my side if I entered a fantastic/dystopic setting! However, I also think that Rachel lacks that little something extra that would make her stand out amongst other heroines within the genre. My biggest issue with Logan meanwhile – aside from his tendency to keep coming up with best case/worst case scenarios – was that his protectiveness of Rachel sometimes came off as a little patronizing. 

What I remembered seeing from reviews: There seem to be mixed feelings about the romance. 

My opinion: While I found the attraction between Rachel and Logan to be believable, I thought their individual realizations that they loved the other person occurred too early in the novel. I couldn’t buy, for example, that after two years of being angry at Logan for hurting her, Rachel would so easily dismiss those feelings. Oh, and does anyone else get the sense that there may be a love triangle in the future?

Defiance was released by Balzer + Bray in August 2012. 

Comments About the Cover: I’m inclined to like it of course because purple is my favourite colour. I also think Rachel looks sort of fierce.


  1. Yeah... I was pretty ambivalent about this one, as well. I felt the world building and character development were lacking and missing that extra special something, as well. And I didn't totally buy into the romance either. But it was still good overall - it was just hard not to compare it to other similar, better reads.

  2. Great review, I really like the way you did it. I'm glad that after lowering your expectations, this worked out for you. It was one that I was really looking forward to and unfortunately became a dnf. I just couldn't take to the characters and didn't care what happened to them and just felt I couldn't continue. Needless to say, I was disappointed after a long wait.

  3. Nice review! I'm still looking forward to read this book. I like the concept (and the cover is pretty) I like strong heroins :)


  4. I had some mixed thoughts on this too, and completely understand why some people haven't been as taken with the romance. I quite liked this overall though, and look forward to the next book. I just don't think I would rush out to buy it. Great review, Z!

  5. I'm so glad you enjoyed this one overall Z! I think I liked it a bit more than you did, but I agree with you on Logan's best case/worst case scenarios. I tired of those after the first couple:) I'm hoping we don't get a love triangle moving forward, Rachel's loved Logan for so long it would be hard for me to understand her affection switching to someone else. I guess we'll just have to see!

  6. Glad you went in reading this one with lowered/realistic (?) expectations, Z. Despite some of the short comings, I'm a bit more inclined to give this one a shot. I think I'll wait for the series to finish before I start.

  7. I completely agree both about the worldbuilding and about the characters. I loved Rachel and Logan, but felt that the worldbuidling was lacking and it made me a bit sad. Hopefully this will get fixed in the next book.
    Great review!

  8. Ha! Yes, sometimes lowering your expectations helps tons, doesn't it. I like what you did here, Z. Clever girl, you are. hehehe
    The lack of effort to explain the setting probably would have frustrated me, and I often find protags that are too rash TSTL, so I don't know how much I would like Rachel.

  9. Oh, goodness, I've still yet to read this one! And I've had it for forever. I'm glad that you liked it overall, Zahida. I'm not sure how I'll react to the iffy romance, though. Lovely review!


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