Book: Blood Red Road (Dustlands #1)
Author: Moira Young
Release date: June 7, 2011
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry
Saba has spent her whole life in Silverlake, a dried-up wasteland ravaged by constant sandstorms. The Wrecker civilization has long been destroyed, leaving only landfills for Saba and her family to scavenge from. That’s fine by her, as long as her beloved twin brother Lugh is around. But when a monster sandstorm arrives, along with four cloaked horsemen, Saba’s world is shattered. Lugh is captured, and Saba embarks on an epic quest to get him back.
Suddenly thrown into the lawless, ugly reality of the world outside of desolate Silverlake, Saba is lost without Lugh to guide her. So perhaps the most surprising thing of all is what Saba learns about herself: she’s a fierce fighter, an unbeatable survivor, and a cunning opponent. And she has the power to take down a corrupt society from the inside. Teamed up with a handsome daredevil named Jack and a gang of girl revolutionaries called the Free Hawks, Saba stages a showdown that will change the course of her own civilization.
Wow! Moira Young’s debut novel is fantastic. Blood Red Road, the first book in the Dustlands trilogy, transports you to a futuristic world unlike any other. Dystopian novels are becoming more common on young adult shelves but there is nothing common about this book.
Saba of Silverlake has never known the world outside of her family and her home in Silverlake. All that changes when her twin brother, Lugh, is kidnapped and she must go off after him. For the first time in her life Saba must fend for herself and face down many new challenges. What starts out as a mission to save her brother quickly turns into a journey where Saba must learn where her loyalties lie and what she will do for love.
Before reading Blood Red Road I had heard a lot about it. The main thing though was that the writing style was different. Boy was it ever! I never thought such a minimalist style of writing could evoke so many emotions and paint so many beautiful (and sometimes not-so-beautiful) pictures. Sure at the beginning I was a little skeptical but that all quickly changed and I was hooked. For a 450-something page book it seemed to fly.
Saba was a kick-ass heroine. She did not let anything bring her down. There were plenty of times that she was scared but that never slowed her down. And while in the beginning she was hardheaded, stubborn, and unwilling to let anyone in, that all changed throughout the book. Okay well the stubborn part didn’t really change but I loved her all the more for it. The rest of the cast of characters, Emmi, Lugh, Jack, Ike, Ash, Tommo, Maev, and the rest of the Free Hawks were wonderful. Jack was cocky and very full of himself but in the best possible way. Emmi and Saba may not have got along but it was because they were more alike than either wanted to admit. It was just such a great mix of personalities and I can’t wait for more of them all in the next book.
Overall, Blood Red Road is one I have to recommend checking out. I can’t rave enough about the gorgeous writing, memorable characters, and fast-paced storyline. The sequel can’t get here fast enough.
First line: Lugh got born first.