27 July, 2021

[Review] Legendborn by Tracy Deonn


Cover image from the goodreads website.

Series or Stand Alone:
Legendborn #1
Release Date: 6 October, 2020
Publisher: Simon Schuster Audio
Genre: Young Adult Fiction/Science Fiction/Retellings
ISBN: 9781797113463
Edition: Audiobook (also available in Hardback and eBook)
Review Written: 22 March, 2021
Warnings: Racism, Death of a Parent, Grief, Death, Slavery, Rape, Blood, Gore, Sexism, Bullying
After her mother dies in an accident, sixteen-year-old Bree Matthews wants nothing to do with her family memories or childhood home. A residential program for bright high schoolers at UNC–Chapel Hill seems like the perfect escape—until Bree witnesses a magical attack her very first night on campus.

A flying demon feeding on human energies.

A secret society of so called “Legendborn” students that hunt the creatures down.

And a mysterious teenage mage who calls himself a “Merlin” and who attempts—and fails—to wipe Bree’s memory of everything she saw.

The mage’s failure unlocks Bree’s own unique magic and a buried memory with a hidden connection: the night her mother died, another Merlin was at the hospital. Now that Bree knows there’s more to her mother’s death than what’s on the police report, she’ll do whatever it takes to find out the truth, even if that means infiltrating the Legendborn as one of their initiates.

She recruits Nick, a self-exiled Legendborn with his own grudge against the group, and their reluctant partnership pulls them deeper into the society’s secrets—and closer to each other. But when the Legendborn reveal themselves as the descendants of King Arthur’s knights and explain that a magical war is coming, Bree has to decide how far she’ll go for the truth and whether she should use her magic to take the society down—or join the fight. 

See more by Tracy Deonn at her website.
I love Arthurian retellings. I love retellings of any kind honestly. Give me a good fairytale or legend retelling, and I'll sing the praises to the moon. Legendborn by Tracy Deonn is perhaps one of the best takes on the Arthurian legend that I've read in a long while.

Bree Matthews always wanted to go to UNC-Chapel Hill to follow in her mother's footsteps. Too bad it was the one thing her mother did not want her to do. So Bree does what she thinks will win her mother over, she goes behind her back and applies. If she gets accepted, she reasons, her mother won't be able to say no to her doing the residential program. Unfortunately, Bree's mother is killed in an accident right after they argue about the acceptance into the residential program. Left with a large amount of guilt and trauma, Bree struggles to find acceptance within the world without her mother.

Though she's not supposed to, Bree attends a party on her first night at the program and witnesses a demon feeding on human energies. Though she's bewitched by a Legendborn (a group of families who carry on a secret society based on the Round Table legend), Bree still remembers what happened. And she's not sure if that's a good thing or not. Since she has to join a club or society to show that she's serious about being on campus (and to keep her out of trouble), Bree convinces Nick, her on-campus student advisor and a self-exiled Legendborn, to sponsor her in the initiation of the society.

Things continue to go awry as Bree attempts to keep up with her studies, unlock the mystery of who she is and what her powers can do, and to learn what exactly the Legendborn society is doing. Everything completely falls apart as her life continues to unravel while she looks for the reason her mother was killed, and who she was to the Legendborn.

Bree is faced with many hard choices throughout the book, trying to hide secrets and struggling to make a balance between her revenge-fueled desire to bring her mother's killers to justice. There's a huge twist at the end (Bree is Arthur's descendant) that leaves everyone in shock. With the kidnapping of Nick, Bree is left to face that everything she knew to be true isn't. And she'll have to figure out a way to find Nick and rescue him before war breaks out.

I cannot wait to read what happens next in the next book in the series.

No comments:

Post a Comment