My rating: 4 of 5 stars
“Legend” is a highly complex dystopian novel. I’m reminded of why, for some years, I had stopped reading dystopian fiction (until Dan Simmons’ incredible “Flashback” published in 2011). Each time I read a dystopian story, my emotions kick in along with my fears, and I dread living in this type of society, whatever the failings of the culture in any particular such novel or novella or short story. This was the case with “Matched,” also.
I understand that this is not Ms. Lu’s first novel, but it is her first published. She demonstrates a real grasp of writing accomplishment. The novel is very fast-paced, and her world-building is excellent (even though the type of society is so depressing!). Her characters are very well filled-out and three-dimensional, and there’s no difficulty in experiencing empathy for them. Personally, I would have preferred as a reader’s hook that the novel start a couple chapters in, with the hospital incursion, but I believe most readers will enjoy “Legend” just as it is. Although it is a YA genre novel, adult readers can enjoy the suspense, the world-building, and the romance just as well, including the philosophizing.
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