|Rebel Heart by Moira Young|
October 30, 2012
Source: ARC from publisher
It seemed so simple: Defeat the Tonton, rescue her kidnapped brother, Lugh, and then order would be restored to Saba’s world. Simplicity, however, has proved to be elusive. Now, Saba and her family travel west, headed for a better life and a longed-for reunion with Jack. But the fight for Lugh’s freedom has unleashed a new power in the dust lands, and a formidable new enemy is on the rise.
What is the truth about Jack? And how far will Saba go to get what she wants? In this much-anticipated follow-up to the riveting Blood Red Road, a fierce heroine finds herself at the crossroads of danger and destiny, betrayal and passion.
I loved Blood Red Road when I read it. I loved the rawness, determination, even the immaturity of Saba as she took her physical and emotional journey to save her brother Lugh. I guess I thought she'd have grown a bit by now, but in Rebel Heart, Saba is in even deeper with her emotional train wreck. The first half of the book spends a large part focused on Saba's PTSD (for lack of a better comparison) for what she did in BRR. I appreciate that she wasn't a cold-hearted girl who could get over death so easily. I think that's realistic. Unfortunately, Lugh had his own issues right alongside Saba, but the two hard heads were more harmful then helpful to each other. The two of them and their issues were a bit grating at times.
The second half is another journey to find someone and try not to get everyone killed. But at least we meet some more new characters and are re-introduced to some old ones. The secondary characters certainly help round out the novel. Then Saba's in the thick of things, making rash decisions, and making more of a mess of things. Really, she was a hot mess. And the last quarter of the book had surprises, twists, and did-that-really-just-happen and I-can't-wait-to-see-where-this-goes-in-the-next-book moments. While I enjoyed this book, it wasn't at the BRR level I'd been expecting. But for a middle book in a trilogy, it did bring much more to the storyline and was not just a filler book. I don't even know what to expect with the last book as far as how the story will end, and who will survive, but I will certainly be reading it.
Saba: Hot mess of emotions, made rash decisions, was in denial of what she was going through which just perpetuated all her problems, a bit of an emotional train wreck at times. And toward the end there...some careless/thoughtless decisions that surprised me. If she doesn't regret now, she may regret later. But who knows? I'm really curious where Ms. Young will take Saba next. Hopefully she'll finally get her head straight, grow up, and be the warrior she needs to be.
Lugh: I seriously wanted to punch him in the face several times. If he were my brother, I probably would have. I don't know what happened at Freedom Fields, but I want to know. He's certainly not the child of light his mama spoke of. But he also had a few nice moments. And then later I felt sad for him.
Tommo: Poor guy. Now this kid just can't catch a break. I really like him and hope he gets a happy ending. But I'm very worried about him and what he's going to do in the last book.
Emmi: Thank goodness for Emmi. She's the shining star in this mess of traveling companions.
Jack: Loved the opening with Jack. When Jack was actually in the book, he was great. But sadly he's just not in it enough. But I still love the guy. I really hope he's in the last book lots and lots.
DeMalo: I really don't know what to say about him. He's a bit of a conflict of interest for me. I don't want to like him because he's supposed to be the bad guy. But there's something about him that makes you want to like him. He's a very intriguing character that I can't help but want to know more about.
Nero, Hermes, & Tracker: Best travel companions. These books are all the better with this trio in it.