Defiance by C.J. Redwine (book review)

Overall Rating- 4 out of 5 stars

Brief Summary- Will not contain spoilers!

Baalboden is one of many city fortresses that provides refuge for citizens from the Cursed One (a raging monster living in the depths of the Earth). In exchange for protection, the people must completely comply with a ruler. In Baalboden, the commander is a harsh, power-hungry maniac who crosses paths with Rachel Adams when her father does not return from a journey. Her father is declared dead and Rachel is put in the hands of Logan McEntire who is not only a genius but the very boy that turned down Rachel’s heart years earlier. It becomes clear that the mission Rachel’s father was sent on was of the highest pertinence to the Commander. She agrees to go search for the mystery package he was given when he disappeared in hopes that she will find her father. With Logan’s help, she embarks on a gritting journey that will forever change her.

Brief Review- Will not contain spoilers!

This book had one major component that made it stand out from the many modern adventure stories. It was unique in every way. The main characters had strong qualities that separated them from the other popular heroes. The romance paced itself and felt extremely realistic and intriguing. The story was well developed by the supporting details and consistent elements that built a coherent tale for all of the logical readers out there. The characters’ thought processes were extremely individual and also highly relatable. I felt like an everyday person could have evolved into these characters and the story was surprising but it had equal doses of hope and pain to keep the reader hooked without burying them. Although slow at times, this is definitely a story worth reading.

Extended Review

Here are the main pieces that made this story what it was:

  1. The love story- The love story in this book was refreshing. Yes the characters were attracted to one another but their feelings went beyond the surface. They did not even kiss until almost the close of the story. Love that is founded upon lust does not amount to anything but these characters deeply felt for one another. The reader is able to watch the feelings develop between two people that really reveal the best in each other and crave who each other is not just what they look like. This was real and amazing. I still feel like at the end of the book the romance was alive as opposed to beaten to death. That is saying something especially because the attraction begins at the open of the story.
  2. Rachel and Logan- The book is written from both of these character’s perspectives which can sometimes be detrimental to the emotional attachment the story builds with he reader but not in this case. The writer took enough time to attach the reader to both main characters and switched between the two perspectives when it was appropriate. It is annoying when an author goes back and forth for the sake of uniformity when one character has so much more to focus on but Redwine navigates in an exemplary fashion. Another draw to these characters is their individuality. Rachel is fierce to her core and deeply passionate. The author never wavers with her personality and shows the consequences of living hap hazardously. She is certainly not watered down and perfect which was powerful. Logan is reasonable and unbelievably smart but he also has a passion that matches Rachel’s. Combined, these characters form a very capable and united front. Both had talents that worked great on their own but harmoniously when in unison. The pair was quite impressive and it is interesting to see two characters this deeply developed which made it possible to have two stars of the story.
  3. Supporting details and characters- The supporting characters did not get much time to form bonds with the reader because so much attention was given to developing two main characters. That was a sacrifice the author was obviously willing to make- you can judge if it was wise or not. The supporting details made the story practical and enhanced. My only complaint about this was sometimes it was slow but later in the story I would always be thankful for the time taken to give sensory details and such.
  4.  Purpose for sequel- FINALLY A BOOK THAT ACTUALLY DESERVES A SEQUEL! It is troubling to see many modern writers throw in an unnecessary element that does not really make sense just to add another book. This story was not over and could not possibly have ended in this book. I am excited for the next one- many questions were unanswered. I feel as though the book ended at a climax which makes it feel as though the next book will truly be a continuation of the first.
  5. Male and Female friendly- It is extremely difficult to produce stories that are extremely appealing to both men and women Redwine definitely expanded her audience by adding elements to the story that would encourage male and female readers.
  6. Twists and turns- Although the message of the book was not fully developed as the end has not been reached yet, the surprising elements kept the book moving in a gripping manner.

I highly recommend this book for adventure lovers and would love to hear other’s thoughts on the story! Looking forward to reading the sequel.

Morality Rating- 3 out of 5 stars

Deep themes, emotionally heavy scenes, and gruesome fights label this book as appropriate for most teens and adults. The themes are wholesome but the content is difficult to process and should be read with a mature mind.

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