Monday, December 30, 2013

DEFY by Sara B. Larson

Okay, so I've known Sara for about 5 years now. She lives here in Utah with me, and we get together for parties, dinners, launches, write nights, conferences, and various other things. When a fried organized an ARC tour, I signed up.

Then DEFY came up on NetGalley, so I snagged it there too. It's easier for me to read at the gym on my Kindle, and this way, when the ARC finally came, all I had to do was sign it and go through and tell Sara all my favorite parts.

And there were many favorite parts. I absolutely loved DEFY. It's a YA fantasy that fits into the genre very nicely. Let's explore a little bit.

About DEFY: Alexa Hollen is a fighter. Forced to disguise herself as a boy and serve in the king's army, Alex uses her quick wit and fierce sword-fighting skills to earn a spot on the elite prince's guard. But when a powerful sorcerer sneaks into the palace in the dead of night, even Alex, who is virtually unbeatable, can't prevent him from abducting her, her fellow guard and friend Rylan, and Prince Damian, taking them through the treacherous wilds of the jungle and deep into enemy territory.

The longer Alex is held captive with both Rylan and the prince, the more she realizes that she is not the only one who has been keeping dangerous secrets. And suddenly, after her own secret is revealed, Alex finds herself confronted with two men vying for her heart: the safe and steady Rylan, who has always cared for her, and the dark, intriguing Damian. With hidden foes lurking around every corner, is Alex strong enough to save herself and the kingdom she's sworn to protect?

I have also written a (trunked) novel about a girl who pretends to be a boy, so I loved this aspect of it. I liked how Sara handled the delicate issues of female body parts while still making this girl a boy on the outside. But Alexa is a girl, and she has female internal reactions, worries, and thoughts. This can be tricky to do, and Sara did it well.

I loved the jungle setting. I don't know why; maybe because I haven't read anything like that for a while. It was different, and for me, different in a book is always good.

DEFY is a fantasy, so it has danger, intrigue, wicked kings, and magic. And there's some kissing, which you know I'm fond of. If you like fantasies like THE GIRL OF FIRE AND THORNS or GRACELING, you'll like DEFY.

It comes out on January 7, so be sure to get your copy!!

Also, I am woefully out of the loop. What should I be looking forward to reading in 2014??


ilima said...

Excited for Sara and her book!

Natalie Aguirre said...

Can you send me some Utah water? Because it seems to produce good writers. I got an ARC of Sara's book for her interview next Monday at Literary Rambles. I loved that she pretended to be a guy and the jungle too.

I'm looking forward to Cress, Ignite Me, Split Second and Enders. I just read All That Glows, a great fantasy by Ryan Graudin and Into the Still Blue, a great end to this dystopian series.

Donna K. Weaver said...

I think this may already be on my TBR list. I'll have to check.

Alexa said...

I'm really looking forward to this book and I already pre-ordered it! So far, I've been hearing mixed things about it, so I'm excited to make up my own mind. This is simply a must for me, since the heroine has the same name as me! :D

Leandra Wallace said...

I've been looking forward to Defy for the last several months!

Dianne K. Salerni said...

I hadn't heard of this one, but I'll definitely check it out in January. Thanks!

Jessie Humphries said...

Sounds like an awesome story! I've recently read something very similar to this that I adore :)

Kimberley Griffiths Little said...

I finished it a couple days ago! REALLY enjoyed it!

Simply Sarah said...

I have this in my NetGalley account and now I'm even more excited about reading it :)

Emily R. King said...

I'm super excited for this one!

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