Blood Red Road by Moira Young is the first in the Dust Lands series and Oh My God what a beginning to the series it is. This story follows the amazing adventure of Saba, a girl left in the shadow of her twin brother, Lugh, but when he is taken from her, Saba finds that she is stronger than she once thought.
Let’s take a look at the synopsis:
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.
Dystopian at its finest. Blood Red Road‘s story is full of adventure as Saba faces one thing after another, not to mention the flirtatious back and forth between her and Jack. He is the classic badboy that girls love, the type that teases and flirts, driving you crazy and wild until you can’t resist any more.
I also love the sister bond between Saba and Emmi. It is definitely a complicated one but the way it evolves and grows throughout the book is well-written.
Now I have to – I mean, have to – talk about the style of writing here. When I read the first paragraph from Saba’s point of view, I was like, “What the hell did she just say?”. Young’s writing style has Saba talking like a hick throughout the entire novel. At first I double-taked all the time because my rain wanted to read the sentence in proper English, but eventually I got used to the way Saba talked. It flowed like normal.
The other thing that was different here was the speech parts. Young doesn’t use talking marks (“) in the novel. It’s written as normal text with a ‘I said, jack said’ chucked in there. Yet another thing that threw me when I first started. But at no point in the novel was I ever confused about who was talking. Young wrote with fluidity and sense.
They were both bold style choices that really do fit with Saba’s character. She doesn’t know how to read or write so why would she put talking marks in when telling her story?
I’m looking forward to reading the second in the Dust Lands series: Rebel Heart, which I ordered from Book Depository and am anxiously waiting by the front door for it to arrive. A great read and would definitely recommend to others.