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 was disappointed that Defy didn't meet my 5 Star expectations, but that doesn't mean that I didn't find it enjoyable.
I was excited to hear that there was a new novel out about a woman disguised as a soldier. I was a big fan of the Alana series and Mulan growing up so I was hoping that this would become an instant new favorite.
Although Alexa is a strong and likeable character I didn't find her as compelling as other "females dressed as male soldiers" in literature. Her choice to become a male soldier was to save herself, not to fight for freedom or her country. Granted she was only 14 when she had to make that difficult decision. Later in the story all of her actions were the result of orders, with few decisions made on her own and from her heart. I felt she was more "just along for the ride" through most of the tale. I would have appreciated more spirit within her and less focus on the romance, because when Alexa does make her own decisions and follow through with them the results are AMAZING!
As for the romance, I have seen a lot of people complaining about the love triangle that is found within Defy. I found nothing wrong with the romance in the book, or the love triangle, I just would have preferred less focus on it. I must admit I agreed with Sara B. Larson's romantic decisions for Alexa in the end (No, you aren't even getting a hint at to what these decisions are!)
With all that said Defy definitely has a lot going for it. Sara B. Larson's writing is entirely captivating. The story flows well and you genuinely feel for all the characters. You come to care for not only the principals of Defy, but the minor characters that breath life into the story as well. The reader feels each loss, the blossoming of new love and the anxiety that is prevalent throughout the novel personally. All the signs of a great writer.
My favorite part of the story had to be Alexa discovering who she truly was behind the mask of the person she was pretending to be. It takes a war for her to start figuring it out. But Self Discovery is always an emotional war, It makes sense that actual war can lead to the same results.
Defy may not have met my expectations but I anxiously await the next installment in the series. I have a feeling it will only get better.