Publication Date: January 29, 2013Review: If you thought Legend was good, just multiply that by 100. That should probably give you a good feel of what Prodigy is like, because wow, things get so intense in this phenomenal sequel!
Publisher: Putnam Juvenile
Page Count: 371
Synopsis: June and Day arrive in Vegas just as the unthinkable happens: the Elector Primo dies, and his son Anden takes his place. With the Republic edging closer to chaos, the two join a group of Patriot rebels eager to help Day rescue his brother and offer passage to the Colonies. They have only one request—June and Day must assassinate the new Elector.
It’s their chance to change the nation, to give voice to a people silenced for too long.
But as June realizes this Elector is nothing like his father, she’s haunted by the choice ahead. What if Anden is a new beginning? What if revolution must be more than loss and vengeance, anger and blood—what if the Patriots are wrong?
In this highly-anticipated sequel, Lu delivers a breathtaking thriller with high stakes and cinematic action.
Prodigy starts not too long after Legend ends. I'll admit, I thought the beginning was kind of slow, and at first I was a bit confused at the parts I didn't remember from the first installment. But gradually, things came back to me, and the story line picked up. The plot in this book was just fantastic. It was thick and layered, exciting and emotional. It was always interesting, and honestly, the plot was smart. It wasn't just thrown together. I feel like Marie Lu started out with a full puzzle, cut up the pieces, and then scattered them, so that while reading, it seems strange, but in the end, everything adds up perfectly. And, oh my goodness, the ending! Tell me I'm not the only who cried? Am I? Okay...
The character development in this installment was absolutely great. On the one hand, we have June, our female protagonist. I love, love, love June. She's so intelligent, analytical, and quick on her feet. She's a fighter and is just plain tough. In Prodigy, we get to see her intelligence as well as her more vulnerable side. On the other hand, we have our second narrator, Day. While I liked him in Legend, I had problems with him in Prodigy. He was sometimes extremely frustrating and self-centered. I feel like because he grew up from nothing, he let the fame of being a huge celebrity-like rebel go to his head. Also, he tended to blame anyone but himself. While I did harbor negative feelings toward Day, that doesn't make this book less great. In fact, I feel like Marie Lu intentionally wanted us to feel these different, mixed emotions as the characters grow in depth.
The romance in this book definitely took a huge turn from Legend. Unfortunately, there were extra love interests thrown in, which is kind of disappointing. But they're not all that serious. Tess is no longer the little, younger sister-like figure to Day anymore.
I love the originality in Prodigy. During Legend, I felt like it was bit too cookie-cutter dystopian at times, but in this book, I really began to discover the refreshing ideas of Marie Lu's world-building, such as the Colonies. The Colonies were definitely not what I was expecting, and I'm super excited that we got to see a glimpse of them in this book! I love the contrast between the Colonies and the Republic, and I really love how the goal is not to bring down the government, but to restore it to the original United States.
All in all, Prodigy is an exceedingly excellent sequel to Legend. It's more intense, action-packed, and substantial than its predecessor (which was already a great novel). Although this review is pretty critical, don't let that mean it's a bad novel! In fact, it's the opposite. Prodigy is an awesome book that really outshines the previous installment. I cannot wait to see where Marie Lu goes with this series!