Blood Red Road

>> Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Author: Moira Young
Recommended Age: 14 and up
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry
ISBN: 1442429984
Year Published: 2011
No. Pages: 464
Genre: Science/ Dystopian Fiction
Main Character Gender: Female
Read & Reviewed by: Katie

Lugh shines like the sun. That must of made it easy fer them to find him. All they had to do was follow his light.

Saba and her twin brother, Lugh, have lived their whole life in Silverlake with their parents and younger sister Emmi. Ever since their mother died eight years ago from childbirth, both the land and their father have slowly deteriorated. One day, when the sun continues to scorch Silverlake, a sandstorm made of red dust and electricity weaves its way towards Silverlake concealing four cloaked riders within. They kill Saba's father, tie up Lugh and take him without an explanation. Finding herself alone with Emmi, Saba goes in search of Lugh, vowing to find and rescue him from his mysterious kidnappers. To do it, she must venture through a world that she’s only ever heard of in her father’s fairy tales and myths. Saba must pass through obstacles she never thought exist, do the unthinkable, and meet Jack, a mysterious outlaw and adventurer, and a gang of rebel girls. Saba encounters many enemies along her journey. Will she learn about herself and others in her search for Lugh? Will she find him and reunite her family?

Saba is a strong-willed, abrasive and fiercely independent character who will stop at nothing to find her brother. She uses her wits and determination to find her brother to overcome seemingly unbeatable obstacles such as disease, famine and dehydration. Saba's intelligence and quick thinking allows her to get out of sticky situations. I thought that Moria Young did an excellent job on introducing Saba in Blood Red Road and by creating such a strong female protagonist, I am eager to follow her into the next book. She is without a doubt my favorite character. She was inspiring and I found myself rooting for Saba and her companions throughout the book. Saba was a good but stubborn leader, not willing to give or receive help. She was flawed, which made her a more realistic in comparison character.

Young tied this story together well; the use of first person narrative and slang and speech enabled me to better understand the main character and create a more believable futuristic setting compared to some other science fiction novels. Young also used personification and other sensory wording that created a world that I, the reader could see clearly. For example:

When we reach the riverbank, the thick reddish-brown stream of muddy water’s flowin’ fast. It catches on a dead tree lyin’ on the riverbed, turns it this way then that way, slowly, like its makin’ up its mind what to do with it. Then it lifts the tree and rushes it downstream.

This exemplifies how Young uses sensory imagery to provide just enough detail so I can see what is happening at that moment clearly, while not overloading the pages with too much detail. I believe this to be a fine balance when writing in this genre.

I loved the plot, the characters and the book in general. Blood Red Road contained an immense story. Saba is constantly sidetracked throughout the whole novel, taking her and the reader in a completely different route than expected. I rated this novel a ten out of ten because of the cut to the bone writing style, which created a fast pace but visible novel. I also rated it highly because of the fact that a Science /Dystopian Fiction novel starred a strong, confident female character.

This is the first in the series, The Dust Lands. Blood Road is followed by a second book, Rebel Heart. I can’t wait until the third installment is published in this series.

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