Author: Marissa Meyer
Rating: 5/5 Stars
Series: Renegades (Book 1)
Why?: Loved Heartless and The Lunar Chronicles
I went into this book slightly worried, because I had read less-than stellar comments/reviews from other people and this is the first book I have read from Marissa Meyer that wasn't a retelling. So this was slightly outside my comfort zone, and I didn't want any negative feelings I had towards this book to affect how I see her other books.
Luckily, that wasn't a problem.
There is no denying that this book is insanely different from her other ones. Her other books are retellings and more fantasy-ish, while this one is (kinda still a retelling but I'll get there) and definitely falls more on the science-fiction side of the fence. But I didn't have to walk to the "scary side" of the library to get it so that was a plus. Also I almost felt like the writing style was different, although not necessarily bad.
Before I talk about all the stuff that I liked (or maybe didn't like) about the book, I feel the urge to discuss a comment that I saw floating around a lot. YES, a lot of the characters do resemble figures in X-MEN quite heavily. X-MEN is mentioned in the acknowledgments. Did it bother me? Not necessarily a ton, but there were a couple of characters (but one in particular) where I felt like the character was no longer inspired by a character in the X-MEN universe, they WERE that character. I know that it can be really hard to create an original character based off of a different character without retaining some characteristics, but I felt like some more work could have been done to make it so that the characters weren't nearly so similar.
So here's what I loved: there was little to no romance, there was plenty of action, and there was enough of a cliffhanger thingy at the end to keep me interested in the next one.
The whole little to no romance thing was GREAT for me. The novel was all about the action and the conflict, and while there were hints at a potential romance it didn't completely derail the entire story line.
There was a ton of action in this book, and it just moved from one conflict to the next. Generally this bugs me because I like to be walked through every single step, but I actually didn't mind! I was never bored while reading, and it was quite enjoyable.
I was quite confused while reading this book because I didn't remember if it was part of a series or not, and didn't muster up the energy to Google it until halfway through the book. Once I figured out it was a series though, the structure started to make a ton more sense. At the end of the book it was clear that it wasn't a stand-alone, and now I can't wait to read the next one.
Here's what I didn't like: the whole X-MEN thing, the conflicts were slightly confusing, and the backstory wasn't that well explained.
The conflicts were pretty confusing just because the story seemed to slide from one conflict to the next without having a clearly defined resolution to the one before it. A lot of times this left me feeling like I was holding a ton of loose ends, which I hate. There were a bunch of questions that were left unanswered, which bugged me a lot.
The backstory was sporadically mixed in throughout the novel, which made it super difficult because previous battles were always being referenced and I wouldn't figure out what had happened in that battle until chapters later. I wish it would have been more clearly explained, since it would have made reading it a ton easier.
Overall this was a super good book, and I didn't mind the couple of things that bothered me too much. If you liked Meyer's previous books, I would definitely check this one out!