Friday, December 7, 2012

Rebel Heart: review

Title: Rebel Heart (Dust Lands #2)
Author: Moira Young
Genres: dystopian, adventure, Firefly-esque
Rating: 5 stars!
Source: library
Summary: It seemed so simple: Defeat the Tonton, rescue her kidnapped brother, Lugh, and then order would be restored to Saba’s world. Simplicity, however, has proved to be elusive. Now, Saba and her family travel west, headed for a better life and a longed-for reunion with Jack. But the fight for Lugh’s freedom has unleashed a new power in the dust lands, and a formidable new enemy is on the rise.

What is the truth about Jack? And how far will Saba go to get what she wants? In this much-anticipated follow-up to the riveting Blood Red Road, a fierce heroine finds herself at the crossroads of danger and destiny, betrayal and passion.

(Let me just stare at this cover a little more....O.O...okay, let's get started.)

   The one initially off-putting comparison I read about Blood Red Road was "For fans of The Hunger Games!" or "Better than The Hunger Games!" Yeah, I've never heard that one before. Really people, that line doesn't even work anymore.
   But. I hate to say it. This book is pretty awesome like The Hunger Games, and is completely for fans of that famous series. Trust me, I don't say that often. There's cruel fighting kids, a tough be-strong-or-die world...well, actually it's like the Games are what their (Saba's) world is like. That may be a little extreme, but definitely along the lines.

(Little side note warning, my opinions on the language have drastically changed since I read Blood Red Road, because I hadn't seen Firefly back then. So don't go looking for that wimpy review. Moving on.)

   I also get to say with glee that the Dust Lands trilogy is for fans of Firefly. The setting, language, and even some characters, ALL reminded me of the best show in ever-existence. More on the language below, but I thought I'd mention Firefly, because if you have a friend who likes that series: If you haven't already, recommend these books to them. They don't know what they're missing.

   About Young's writing. I really really love the writing. For those who are unfamiliar with this series, well, first you shouldn't be reading this review, and second, her writing is probably one of the most unusual I've come across. Ever. Now it's not that she writes in accents. More than that, she freakin thinks in the accents. And soon enough, you're thinking it along with her. Saba. Yeah.

   For example, because I just have to share it. There isn't any regular lame accent: "'She ain't goin nowhere,' I said, taking a seat by the fire." No. There's greatness like, this warm, comfortable language that flows off the tongue and feels friendly. (I'm sorry, I get really into language stuff.)
Here's a quote or two from the first book, if you've somehow forgotten:

We're on our own. An I feel calm. It seems crazy . . . but I'm calm. Because now I see what I gotta do. An what I ain't gotta do, which is waste time thinkin that anybody's gonna help us. That somebody's gonna come along an rescue us. I cain't count on nobody but me.
He turns around, all impatient. Now what? I wanna say something to you. I wanna say . . . I dunno . . . more. I could bust apart with all I'm feelin inside of me right now. What with fightin off the hellwurms an gittin my shoulder tore open, an how I felt when I woke up an seen you an, now, here I am, being so close to findin Lugh an I dunno what's gonna happen an--
Jack's lookin at me, frowning. What's the matter with you, Saba? he says.
Yer in my blood, Saba, he says. Yer in my head. Yer in my breath, yer in my bones...gawd help me, yer everywhere. You have bin since the first moment I set eyes on you.

   I lied, three.

   Also, did I mention there aren't quotation marks? ;) You can't forget that. But really, it did take some initial getting used to. But I'm wasting my time here, convincing people who already love the series (I'm hoping) so I'm continuing now.

   Technically Dust Lands trilogy is dystopian. There's "Wrecker Tech" and ruins. But it's so sparse and nobody really hangs around any of the now-junk that I feel they're on their own little made-up planet. We'll call it Miranda. (kidding.) I also noticed this dystopian is set apart by not having the common "suppressed society and rebellion" thing that's becoming so normal in books. Sure, there's now a hint of rebellion in the midst of the bad guys. The Tonton are getting stronger and more organized. Led by the Pathfinder and all his visions of a new world. I feel like we're seeing this future New Society in the makings. Things could get bad if the head's not cut off quick. That's Saba's job, I guess. Her and her friends have to save the day now.

   Saba's brother, Lugh, is probably my least favorite character. From the start he rubbed me the wrong way, and even through this book, I still don't like him. Lugh means well I guess. Mostly he came across as overprotective and obnoxious, like it's three years younger than her, instead of her twin. All of his decisions made me want to hit him, and as much as Saba puts up with it, she's coming to the end of her string as well. I think his problem is he doesn't share anything, and is super secretive about what took place when the Tonton originally kidnapped him. It was bad, but we have no idea what. And that puts distance between him and everyone else.

   I feel like I should have a whole paragraph for Saba too, but really all I have to say is she's really selfish in her decisions and opinions, but really aware of it; and boy can she kick some ass. Becoming a bit of a heartbreaker, too, to her disdain. Really, something needs to be done about that. Soon.

   DeMalo. Something in that name gives me shivers, and I think badness upon hearing it. Saba's sudden--dare I say it?-- attraction to him creeps me out. He creeps me out in general. Just *bleh* and he's so charismatic, I felt like going lalalala while he talked. I have a feeling he will get a much bigger role in the last book, which scares me.

   Jack. He ain't much in here, really. Probably in about 50 pages in all, and that's not at once. There were some pretty mixed up feelings for a while, between me an him. Think Peeta hanging with the Careers. Except it's pretty back and forth whether he's faking it or not for pretty much the entire book. Anyways, I really missed Jack's presence. 

   The last 100 pages are really turbulent. So much went on, people died, betrayed, didn't die, and was hard to keep track of what had actually happened, till about the last page. I took mental notes and finally figured it out.

   Now. Where's that 2014 sequel? The conclusion to the Dust Lands trilogy is gonna be mighty excitin, and I won't be able to get my hands on it fast enough.



  1. Ditto!I totally loved Rebel Heart too!I bought the hardcover copy as soon as it was released and wow-It was so full of awesome-ness!

    Nuzaifa @ Say It With Books

  2. I have a brand spanking new HC copy of Blood Red Road just sitting on my nightstand waiting for some love. After reading your review for book 2, I definitely have to move this up in the pecking order. And then you just had to go and mention Firefly (LOVED IT!!), I am so tempted to put down the book I'm currently reading and start the Dust Lands Trilogy. The other books on my nightstand are not liking you very much at the moment:)