Defiance and Deception by CJ Redwine
"Defiance" and "Deception" are the first two books in CJ Redwine's "Defiance" trilogy. It follows Rachel, a girl born in the city of Baalboden, who has never been good at following the rules society set for her. Never being one for knitting or sewing, she much rather spends her time sparring with whoever would be a willing opponent. Having lost her mother really young, it came to her dad to raise her as best as he could. In his eyes, it involved being sure that Rachel can fight for herself.
When the first guy Rachel ever showed any interest to rejects her, it leaves a hole in her heart, and the hurt is something that she never really got over. But instead of letting that hurt get to her, she made use of it. And Logan, the guy in question, can attest to that.
So this is where this story starts. And until it end with Deception, you cannot really catch a real breath. And even then you can't, cause you desperately wait for Deliverance, the last book in the series and the book I will now have to wait 3-5 weeks to get.
But back to the story. Rachel's dad doesn't return from a mission as a tracker, and is soon pronounced dead by the leader of Baalboden, a man who Rachel has learnt to hate over the course of her life. His tyranny brings him the compliance he asks of his people, and Rachel has had enough. Wanting to go find her father on her own, she's shocked to learn that the person that comes to her rescue and help is no other than Logan, the guy that rejected her hearts all those years ago. And together they start on a journey together none of them quite imagined. Throw in epic battles, monsters and deception and you will get a great series that will leave you wanting more.
“We walked through the streets with our protectors. We wore our dresses. We gave up our education because that was the price of safety. That was the bargain we made with the devil we knew to escape the devil we didn't.”
I don't wanna give away too much of the story, but suffice to say that I loved every angle of it. It keeps you on the edge, keeps you guessing, and most of all it keeps you wishing that Rachel and Logan would just find their peace. But their lives are far from it. Being thrown into positions that neither one of them is really prepared for makes for a really amazing storyline.
Rachel and Logan are highly likeable characters. Both fiercely loyal to the ones you love and despite the things life threw in their way, not broken into despair. They both need to overcome incredible odds and hurts, and it's not easy for either one of them. Rachel herself, while being a fighter, is being tested to her limits, losing one person after the other. It drives her into despair eventually, but she's strong willed, stubborn and realises that there are more important things than drowning in your sorrows. People depend on her. There is a lot of grief in this book and you see how different characters deal with it in their own ways. It's never easy, and you will see that those people hurt in unimaginable ways.
“Maybe that's what love is. Giving others the power to hurt you and trusting that they'll use it to heal you instead.”
Rachel and Logan's love story is a beautiful thing to watch as well, because when the world around them crashes, they at least have each other to lean on. Their responsibilities go with them on their way, but they never let it stray far from remembering who their real loyalty lies with.
“She stares at me, a tiny smile flitting across her lips, and the affection on her face makes me feel like the richest man in the world.”
CJ Redwine's writing is easy to follow and drags you into the story instantly. It's like everything else dissolves around you, and all you can focus on is that story and where it would go. It sucked you in and didn't let you go until you turned the last page. And believe me, at book two the last page didn't satisfy me at all. It only made me wanna have the third book all the sooner.
So this tale of love, family, loyalty and overcoming odds is a great read, one I can just tell everyone to read. I loved every page of those books and when I finally get the last book of the series in my hand, believe me when I saw I won't stop until I have gotten through all the pages of it.
I would recommend this story to everyone who likes romance with a fantasy kick. You will NOT be disappointed!!!