SteelStriker By Marie Lu

“You live life, certain it will always stay this way, until it doesn’t.”

As a striker, Talin was taught loyalty is life. Loyalty to the shield who watch your back and to the strikers that risk their lives on the battlefield, and most of all to Mara, which was once the last nation free from the Karensa Federation’s tyranny. But, Mara has fallen and it’s destruction has unleashed Talin’s worst nightmare as her friends scattered from combat and her mother has been taken hostage by the premier. Talin does the unthinkable in order to save her friends, family, and her adopted home as she betrays them to become the federation’s most deadly war machine as their newest Skyhunter. A stranger in enemy land, Talin finds herself becoming friends with Red, who knows the cruelty firsthand done by federation but he knows that this isn’t over for Mara or Talin. The link between them may be weak but it might be the only way for them to salvage their past and safeguard their future.

Well, Marie Lu did it again. I’ve been waiting for this book to come out ever since I read the first book with was a rollercoaster journey of emotions and she didn’t dissappoint with the follow up. As it was delightful, fun, emotional, and gripping until the end and I was hoping it would be because I loved the first book. There’s so much that I love about this one but what really stands out to me are the characters and the writing. The characters felt so real, raw, and alive with emotion that you could really feel what they were going through and they were all interesting and unique in their own way. I love how Marie crafts her characters and she spends a lot of time with developing them and it shows in the writing and how they are described. I really love seeing Talin and Red’s perspectives and I found their relationship interesting and real and the dynamics between them throughout the book was great.

Marie really knows how to write really great antagonists as Premier Constantine wasn’t all bad. He had a story and through Talin’s perspective it really shows that he’s human which I loved because it’s interesting to have characters like that. I like that she really does flesh them out and make them complicated because when it’s just one sided, it’s not that interesting. The side characters were just as interesting and complicated as the main characters and that’s always something that I’ve loved with her writing as she really spends time and effort making her characters complicated yet so real with emotion.

I think this was a fantastic conclusion to the series. As much as I’d love to see more, I would prefer if she didn’t write a follow up as I felt everything got wrapped up really well. So if you’re a sci-fi, adventure or fantasy fan, I think you would like this!

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