Thursday, January 23, 2014

Champion by Marie Lu

Author: Marie Lu
Publisher: Putnam Juvenile
Publication Date: November 5, 2013
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It’s been a little over a month since I finished Champion. I’ve put off writing this review because I wanted to let the ending sit. I always find it hard to write reviews for series enders. There is so much going on, and in a lot of ways, finishing a series is a private thing. You have to say goodbye to characters you’ve come to know over three books. That’s hard!

June has grown so much over the last two books and it was interesting to find out just how much more she has changed as the Princeps-elect. It was a position she was ill-suited for but had thrust upon her. June was forced throughout the novel to play a political game and that isn’t her. I enjoyed watching her strive for excellence (which is her personality) and then come to terms with the fact that she couldn’t really excel in this environment. June had to decide what she really wanted after being told her whole life what to do.

Then there is Day…*sigh* This boy has lost his whole family, is trying to care for his brother, be the hero to a crumbling country, and is dying! Then on top of that he loves June but is having trouble coming to terms with all of the obstacles surrounding their relationship. Day has it rough. I really didn’t think he was going to make it out of these situations. Lu’s writing shined during Day’s chapters though. Instead of feeling like the deck was stacked against him I felt like Day was competent, and was going to pull out a last minute victory, because that is what Day does. 

That brings us to Anden. He is not the Elector his father was and I loved seeing how he was steering the country in a different direction. The plot of Champion revolves around a plague, and an impending war with the colonies. Anden is crucial to solving both of these problems and I liked his portrayal as a strong leader.

Lu also greatly improved on the world building in this finale. I liked the traveling the characters did. It was interesting to see how the rest of the world panned out in this dystopian series. The entire world wasn’t bleak which was a nice surprise. It further cemented the “North Korea” vibe I was getting last book.

My absolute favorite thing about Champion was the epilogue. It is so difficult to end a dystopian series. Readers want a happily ever after but they don’t want it to be disingenuous, or to not match the tenor of the story. Champion ends beautifully with just the right amount of bittersweet and hope for the future.

Overall, the Legend series is one of my favorite dystopian series. There is something special about June, Day, and this future Marie Lu has created. I have enjoyed every second of this thrill ride and can not recommend the series highly enough. I am now firmly in Lu’s fan camp and can’t wait for the next novel she writes!


  1. I loved this series too, and especially this book and the epilogue. I thought it fit the overall story so well and the fact that it was mentioned in Prodigy (wouldn't it be great if this is what happened) just made it even better. I got teary eyed when reading it...the paper clip ring...gah! I just loved it so much. Glad you loved it too. ~Pam

  2. Awesome review, Emily! I gave Champion 5 stars, too - not something I do often! - so it's great to hear I'm not the only one!

  3. Yes, I agree with you completely! Finishing this series was amazing (yet sad) for me, and it left me with so many (for lack of a better word) feels. I mean...the ending was just so good. And I hate to compare it to Allegiant's ending (if you've read this, then you know exactly what I'm talking about. If you haven't, I'm sorry, lol), but Champion was just a good ending to read after the mental torture Allegiant put me through.

    T from YA Book Queens (:

    1. I have Allegiant but haven't read it because of the slew of negative reviews and backlash. I'm going to wait until I'm in the right mood to read it.

  4. This is my current read! I am savoring it (ok so really I'm putting it off because I'm so scared about how it will end.) What are you reading next?

  5. I loved this ending. It wasn't unrealistically happy, but it wasn't throw-the-book-against-the-wall-depressing. It wasn't at all what I expected, and I really loved it!
    Thanks so much for stopping by! Jen @ YA Romantics