Series: Dustlands #1
Published by Simon & Schuster Audio on 6/7/2011
Genres: Dystopian, Young Adult
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.
I don’t even know what to say about Blood Red Road. It’s one of the roughest dystopians I’ve ever read – or, in this case, listened to. It grabbed me by the collar of my shirt, yanked me up on my feet, then tossed me back down on the ground and proceeded to run over me a few times. Because that’s how I felt when I was done – exhausted, weary, trampled, and pleased that I’d been through it, because it was worth the ride.
Blood Red Road is the first audiobook I’ve ever listened to. I have a strange aversion to audiobooks, but I had attempted to read Blood Red Road previously and Moira Young writes it (and spells it) in dialect, making it impossible for someone like me (I get very distracted reading books spelled in dialect) to enjoy it. When I saw Parajunkee’s review of the audiobook version, I decided to pop my audibook cherry and try it out.
I AM SO GLAD I DID.
Moira Young is nothing short of an amazing, brilliant novelist. She breathes to life a dry, desolate world where nothing is yours and everything is a fight for survival. Saba’s twin brother Lugh is kidnapped by a group of men and she sets off to find him, because she promised and Saba always keeps her word. Young’s characters throughout Blood Red Road are truly something to behold: Saba is such a strong individual, and she truly shines in Heather Lind’s narration. If Saba is all fire and fight, Lugh is calm and steady. Jack is the light-heartedness to Saba’s feisty, somewhat bitchy manner. Emmi is sweet. In fact, they all counter-balance her character in some way, and each other’s. And their personalities were so rich and colorful, it felt as if I knew each of them intimately. Young also paints a completely desolate, dusty world for us to step into. Each page is a vivid description of the wastelands leftover after civilization has been demolished, although we don’t learn how or why. But I was so entranced by the world around them, I didn’t care how or why it happened, I just cared that it did and this is where it ended up. I wanted to step into the pages and experience it for myself (but only for a second, because it is tough living!). Heather Lind’s narration is brutal and freaking awesome. I don’t know if anyone else I ever listen to will hold a candle to her characterizations. Her voice was beautiful, gritty and real. I loved every second I listened to her story – because when she narrated, it became her story, too. Bottom line is, you have to get the audiobook of Blood Red Road. I’m demanding it. It’s everything you’d want in a dystopian. It’s Under the Never Sky (but before there was an Under the Never Sky) without the traditional love story or the Aether; it’s Mad Max; it’s Possession, Crossed, and the Hunger Games; it’s the Book of Eli; it’s every great post-apocalyptic fiction you’ve ever read or watched rolled up into one GREAT, EPIC STORY.
Wisdom ain’t a virtue I ever aspired to.
This book was purchased via Audible. Blurb courtesy of Goodreads.
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