Me: I have too many books to read, so I don’t have time to start any new series!
Also me: Ooooh, a young adult trilogy about superheroes!
I’m a fickle being.
Anyway, in Renegades by Marissa Meyer, society crumbled and descended into anarchy—until a group of people with superpowers managed to establish some order again. This group, the Renegades, are generally well liked, except for the gangs of villains they have battled and beaten. One of these groups, the Anarchists, are bent on taking down the Renegades. And the Anarchist called Nova is out for revenge too, after the Renegades failed to save her family. So she decides to infiltrate them, and so meets Adrian, another superhero with a secret.
I’ve heard good things about this series, and I’ve had this book on my shelf for a while now, so I finally decided I needed to pick it up (she says, ignoring the pile of ARCs looming over her). And I know I’m discovering this four years late, but this book is really good!
I love the characters. Adrian is sweet and brave and loyal, and Nova is jaded and tough and complex, and I love how they interact. Nova actually reminds me somewhat of Lila Bard from A Darker Shade of Magic, actually, which is probably why I liked her so much. The other characters like Ruby and Oscar and the Council are also fantastic. Even the other Anarchists are great, if pretty scary. There are quite a few characters, all with actual names and their superhero names (for example, Adrian is also known as Sketch due to his power), but I never got confused about who was who. It took me a bit to learn all the names, but once I did, it was easy enough to remember them, so props to Meyer for pulling this off.
I also enjoy how this story blends both a superhero story with a dystopian society, and also with a spy/heist-style tale. Nova’s infiltration into the Renegades, as well as the secret Adrian is keeping from everyone, makes for some fascinating dramatic irony as the narrative switches between their points of view. The reader almost always knows more than each of these two characters, and yet the story is still full of surprises and intriguing developments.
The action scenes are wonderful, too. They’re fast paced and intense, full of cool superpowers and vivid, but aren’t so full of detail that the reader gets confused about what is happening. The last sequence at the carnival is especially cool.
In the end, I didn’t expect to enjoy Renegades this much, but wow, it’s so good! Awesome characters, great storytelling, and an action-packed, fast-paced plot make this such a fun read. I could go into way more detail about everything I liked in this, but that would verge into spoiler territory, probably, as well as make this review way too long. I’ll just say taht I need to get my hands on book two soon!
Overall rating: 9/10