Respect the Legend. Idolize the Prodigy. Celebrate the Champion. But never underestimate the Rebel.
Eden Wing has been living in his brother’s shadow for years. Even though he’s a top student at his academy in Ross City, Antarctica, and a brilliant inventor, most people know him only as Daniel Wing’s little brother.
A decade ago, Daniel was known as Day, the boy from the streets who led a revolution that saved the Republic of America. But Day is no longer the same young man who was once a national hero. These days he’d rather hide out from the world and leave his past behind. All that matters to him now is keeping Eden safe–even if that also means giving up June, the great love of Daniel’s life.
–from the back cover of Rebel
As the two brothers struggle to accept who they’ve each become since their time in the Republic, a new danger creeps into the distance that’s grown between them. Eden soon finds himself drawn so far into Ross City’s dark side, even his legendary brother can’t save him. At least not on his own…
I’ll be honest: Going into Rebel, I was worried about what I would think of it. (That’s definitely why it took me almost a year to read it. It’s not because I’m lazy or anything like that.) Of course, it wasn’t because I thought Marie Lu would do anything short of a spectacular job continuing the story she left off at the end of Champion. Rather, my worry was due to a good few years having passed since I read the original trilogy. I loved those three books when I read them, and I still remember them as being amazing. But I was worried my tastes had changed too much and I wouldn’t enjoy the newest installment as much.
Thankfully, it was an unfounded worry. I genuinely enjoyed Rebel and thought that it was a great addition to what was already an excellent series.
First of all, the storyline of the novel was superb; Lu expertly combined a fast-paced race against a seriously well-written antagonist with the personal struggles of the main characters. And the result was gripping. The backdrop of Ross City (which, when it was first visited in Champion, absolutely fascinated me) was beautifully written. Furthermore, it added a layer of intrigue to the plot that made it all the better.
As for the characters, as fun as it was to revisit the relationship between Day and June, one of the best parts of this book was the relationship between Eden and Day. The story alternated between their perspectives, and that added so much to he book as a whole. Experiencing the thoughts and feelings of both made the exploration of the relationship and struggle between the two brothers so much more interesting than it would have been were it seen only from one side or the other.
A large part of what made Rebel such a success, though, was that despite being a continuation of the Legend series, the new novel still maintained a separation from its predecessors. Its main plot, aside from the side arcs that focused on the characters, was unrelated to the main plot of the original trilogy. Additionally, the difference in narrative perspective gave a fresh outlook on the world and events of the story. Honestly, it was just the perfect mix of new and old. And I applaud Lu for managing to do that so well!
Overall, I was far from disappointed with Rebel, and I’m glad Lu made the decision to add to this world. Anyone who enjoyed the Legend series is highly likely to enjoy this novel, too. So I would definitely encourage giving it a go!
Find and get a copy through Goodreads here!