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Book Review: Rebel by Marie Lu

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Title: Rebel

Author: Marie Lu

Sub-genre: Dystopian

Alright. The Legend series by Marie Lu is probably one of my all-time favorite YA series. Not going to lie though, I haven’t really loved anything else Marie has written. I’ve liked everything, but her Young Elites and Warcross series just didn’t grab me the same way the Legend series did. So I was super excited to get my hands on a copy of Rebel, the fourth book in the series. I would definitely not call the ending of the third book an HEA for the main characters Daniel and June (even though they’re both alive which is a win in YA) so I was excited to see where this one went.

Daniel and his younger brother Eden have left America (I know that’s not what it’s actually called, but I can’t think of it any other way) and moved to a new civilization on Antarctica. The city is basically in a bubble and has been devised to work on a level system. Every citizen has a level, and you can gain or lose points based on your actions. Daniel and Eden both have relatively high levels since Daniel works for the government and Eden is a college student. And they have a lot of money, so that helps. Eden keeps traveling out of the higher levels of the city and visiting the “slums”, where people’s level scores are so low there is virtually nothing they can do to increase them. He gets involved in drone racing, which leads him to get involved with the city’s most notorious gangster. When Daniel learns of Eden’s connection to the famed criminal, his boss decides to use Eden to infiltrate the crime ring and capture the mob boss. But with Eden’s help, the mob boss completely wipes out the city’s computer system, and the city descends into chaos. All the while, June has come with the American president for a diplomatic mission, giving her and Daniel a chance to rekindle their relationship.

So clearly a lot going on here. First and foremost, my favorite part of the book was seeing Daniel and June get the ending I always wanted for them. I know not every YA needs to have a love story HEA, but this one stung when they didn’t get it the first time around, and so I was thrilled to see these two reconnect and rediscover their love for each other. If you felt a little miffed about the ending of the third book, it’s worth reading this one just for Daniel and Jude alone.

I liked Eden’s storyline and I thought his whole plight was interesting. I definitely wasn’t as into his path as I was Daniel’s, but that’s not to say there was anything wrong or missing with Eden, I just liked the original characters better. I will say the whole level system seems overdone to me at this point. I feel like I have read something similar in multiple other books and I would have liked to see something new and different.

Overall, this was an enjoyable read and I’m happy Daniel and June got the ending I always wanted for them. I don’t know that I would rush out to buy a second story about Eden, but it’s one I would probably pick up eventually, just to see where his story might go.

Overall Rating: 4 stars

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