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“I picked this up intending to read it next week during vacation. Then I read a few pages, then a few more, and then finished it in 4 hours. I literally couldn't put it down. A bit like Hunger Games and Maze Runner, with a real tough main character. I too loved her little sister, Emmi. Like...”see full review » see other reviews »
“I got through this book very quickly. It was a rough start for me because the language they use isn't "proper" english, but the plot sucked me in from the beginnning. I wasn't "sold" on some of the more "gruesome" aspects of it, but Young didn't give a lot of details on those parts so I was able to get past it. The review on the cover claims it is "Better than the Hunger Games." I wouldn't say that it was better than the hunger game's but it was definitely a good read. I really like how it shows that society has regressed, the exact opposite of most books written in the future. I am very excited to start the next book in the series!”Randi Heitman wrote this review 6 days ago. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“Fantasy, dystopia, after global weather disasters.....high adventure and strong characters. A must read”Mrs. D. wrote this review Wednesday, October 30, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“Oh, I did not understand it, and at first I got the second book and not the first one, so that just made it worse. And third of all, the writing is unique, but I did not like it. ”Kobi wrote this review Sunday, October 13, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“In the book Dust Lands by Moira Young, Saba a 17 year old girl is determined to find her brother Lugh, who was captured by four horsemen. It’s a hot red world for Saba. Will Saba risk her life to find her brother Lugh before it’s too late? ”Jayline M wrote this review Wednesday, October 9, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“11”Erin District High School Library wrote this review Friday, September 27, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“This book was good but I didn't think it was like really OH-MY-GOD-THIS-BOOK-IS-SUPER-GOOD material. It had action and everything but countless times I found myself wanting to just SLAP the main character. But yeah it was a good book, you should read it. ”Bryanne Hang wrote this review Friday, September 27, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“awesome book!!!! great for fans of the hunger games who like a little romance and suspense. ”Laura Goduni wrote this review Wednesday, September 18, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“good book :D:D:D”PENGTAY LEE wrote this review Tuesday, September 17, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“: Inseparable twins Lugh and Saba live with their Pa and little sister Emmi at Silverlake. They eke out a life in this harsh dried-up lakebed environment. Lugh dotes on Emmi while Saba barely tolerates her little sister, she covets Lugh’s attentions for herself. Their solitary life is destroyed when a violent sandstorm brings four riders who steal Lugh and kill Pa. Saba promises Lugh that she will find and rescue him. She sets out to Crosscreek intending to leave Emmi with a friend while she searches for Lugh. Stubbornly Emmi follows. They tolerate each other, enduring harrowing adventures – brutal sandstorms, capture and imprisonment by travelling merchants. Sold to the Cage Master who runs caged Coliseum-like fights for sport, Saba becomes the Angel of Death winning fight after fight. Can she and Emmi escape this hell to continue looking for Lugh. Who is that cocky new prisoner Jack? This first book in Young’s post-apocalyptic trilogy will satisfy lovers of fast paced action and strong female characters.
Picked up for movie development by Ridley Scott - wow!”
“This novel may, in part, have suffered the disadvantage of being read while/after I read Laini Taylor's emotionally chewy Days of Blood & Starlight. By contrast, Blood Red Road has the emotional depth of a rapidly evaporating puddle of rainwater.
I can't address my irritations with this novel without specifics, so...Below, thar be spoilers...
First, the plot was a collection of convenient coincidences. As a writer, plot isn't my strong point, but then, none of my novels have been optioned by Ridley Scott. One might expect a bit more narrative complexity from a novel that drew the esteemed director's eye.
Yes, indeedy, it is fast paced and somewhat actiony. I say somewhat because the story pulls its punches, literally, throughout the novel. Just when it feels like the characters might be in real jeopardy, someone shows up, just in the nick of time, and saves the day. The violence is very PG-rated, clean, and sanitized.
Things begin well enough, with Saba's father being killed by the mysterious Tonton (makes me think Star Wars), and kidnapping Saba's golden brother Llugh. Saba and Llugh are twins and so close that frankly, his abduction is probably the only thing that keeps the two from going all Flowers in the Attic with each other.
So, danger; people die. Good, so far. Saba immediately sets out to rescue her brother. There's a detour by a family friend's home to leave off her little sister Emmi (who exists primarily to get everyone else in trouble), but soon Saba is tracking Llugh across a sandy wasteland. Yeah, I don't understand how this works, since footprints in sand last a day, tops, usually less. Logic, who needs it?
Of course, Emmi arrives on scene just in time to ensure that they both get captured by a demented middle-age couple who conscript Saba into cage fights in rugged desert outpost. If one is expecting a gritty, grim and realistic portrayal of life as a female gladiator, uh, one will be tres disappointed. Saba, who has led a very sheltered life up till now, soon becomes the famed, undefeated Angel of Death. Easy-peasy, no sweat, little blood, no anything except her "red hot" angry mode, which enables her to be queen of the cage.
Her escape comes courtesy of the Hawks, a group of Amazonian women who live in the desert and need her help to free one of their own and destroy the town. I don't know why. I guess because there's no Voice or American Idol to keep them occupied. Saba and the Hawks' leader cook up a plan, which works way too easily. Along the way, Saba rescues Jack, the love interest, who is way too perfect for a post-apocalyptic world. He's also inexplicable in love with Saba.
They flee into the desert, pursued by the villains, who have a convenient sail boat/plane-thing crash. Of course, Saba doesn't bother to check if everyone is really dead. The story progresses as such, with lots of precarious situations that resolve all too neatly.
There are few deaths sprinkled toward the end, but their emotional impact is minimal because the heroine, Saba, can be summed up in one word, feisty. I like a strong heroine, but emotional fortitude is defined by the challenges that the character faces. To put it simply, you can't be brave, if you aren't afraid. Saba is rarely genuinely afraid, or sad, or anything but...feisty.
Keep in mind, this is a very young woman who has lived a semi-idyllic life with her family in total isolation. Obviously, they've had hard times, but nothing on par with what Katniss of Hunger Games has experienced. I bring up Katniss because I picked up this novel based on a review that described Saba as a strong heroine, not whiny like Katniss. Lookie! It's my hackles, held high, me growling.
Katniss is not whiny. Katniss had to struggle with genuine adversity, first early in life -- starvation, depressed mother, etc. -- then through the cruel machinations of the Hunger Games. Throughout her journey, she is a real person with a wide range of emotions including fear and guilt.
Saba, in contrast, breezes merrily through cage fighting, and even the death, AT HER HAND, of her friend, Epona. The latter being one of those WTF moments in the plot. She and her friends go to great lengths to rescue Llugh, and then later, Emmi (when the little twit gets captured) from the antagonists, the Tonton and the King (sadly, not Elvis, because that would be fun). But...when one of the Hawks is about to get captured by the Tontons, the "only" option is for Saba to shoot her from afar, sparing her...something. Saba feels a twinge of guilt about sticking an arrow in her buddy, the emotion being an afterthought, possibly suggested by an editor, and soon after Saba forgets the matter. (But then again, because the secondary characterization is mostly thin as cheap toilet paper, I didn't care much about Epona's demise either.)
Honestly, she's less feisty and more like a sociopath. (Dexter, of the TV show by the same name is a sociopath, but even Dexter regularly shows more emotional complexity.)
2.5 stars, rounding up as a kindness, and because Nero, the crow, is wonderf”