Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Defy by Sara B. Larson
Defy #1
Release Date: January 7th 2014 by Scholastic Press
Genre: Young Adult > Fantasy
Source: NetGalley (Thank you NetGalley & Scholastic!)
Find It: Amazon || GoodReads || B&N
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?

Can we just take two seconds to admire this beautiful cover?


I know everyone's been outraged that Defy is nothing like Mulan. And honestly, I wonder where people even thought it would be. Sure the blurb states that a little girl goes into a military style life posing as a boy but that's about it.

The book starts out as Alexa witnessing the murder of her parents and her twin brother making the decision to cut off her hair and claim her name is Alex and she is his twin brother to keep her out of the breeding house. Can I just quickly say, I hate books that have "breeding houses"? Like, why? What is the purpose? I would highly doubt that in the future we would be under populated judging how the population is rapid growing right now. The idea of a breeding house is just sickening. Completely utterly ---- there's no way a public would go for that! 


It took me awhile to warm up to Defy. Fantasy isn't really my thing and I was getting bored. But about 15% in things started to get slightly interesting. There were parts to the beginning that I found a little absurd but for the most part, I thought the plot flowed nicely.

The love triangle, I'll admit, wasn't as awful as I thought it would be. I was expecting it to be SO MUCH worse but the truth is, there are these two men who care about Alex for completely different justified reasons. I hate admitting this but I'm Team Prince Damian.

So many secrets! Alex isn't the only one keeping secrets but I have to admit... Prince Damian's were the best. I wasn't expecting any of that. Also to see Prince Damian unravel in front of Alex little by little was interesting and exhilarating! I think the reason why I'm not more Team Rylan (even though I really liked him too) is because we don't end up knowing too much about him. At least, not enough in my opinion.

Defy is full of adventure, suspense and Alex's stubbornness to focus on her job rather than herself. And while she does start to take notice of the men around her, I can't blame her. But just because she did does not mean that what she was skilled at lost all purpose. She was still Prince Damian's best guard and she still protected him to the best of her ability no matter where they went. 

Overall I really enjoyed this read and I can not wait for the sequel!


  1. Glad you ended up liking this one, Marie! I love when go outside of my comfort zone with genres and ended up pleasantly surprised! This sounds really great. I don't mind a love triangle as long as their done really well and I love that her character doesn't lose her strength and skill. Great review, I wasn't planning to initially, but I may actually pick this one up now!

    1. @Becky --- Oh I know! I'm just always too scared to step out of my comfort zone because... what if I totally don't like the book?! Haha! I would totally recommend this read! :)