Blood Red Road: Dustlands: 1 by Moira YoungBlood Red Road: Dustlands: 1 by Moira Young

Blood Red Road: Dustlands: 1

byMoira Young

Paperback | February 28, 2012

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This fast-paced YA debut novel has it all: smart, savvy characters making their way through an eerily dystopian society, with all the requisite action, adventure and romance characteristic of the genre vividly and at times, chillingly, portrayed.

In a wild and lawless future, where life is cheap and survival is hard, eighteen-year-old Saba lives with her father, her twin brother Lugh, her young sister Emmi and her pet crow Nero. Theirs is a hard and lonely life. The family resides in a secluded shed, their nearest neighbour living many miles away and the lake, their only source of water and main provider of food, gradually dying from the lack of rain. But Saba's father refuses to leave the place where he buried his beloved wife, Allis, nine years ago. Allis died giving birth to Emmi, and Saba has never forgiven her sister for their mother's death.

But while she despises Emmi, Saba adores her twin brother Lugh. Golden-haired and blue-eyed, loving and good, he seems the complete opposite to dark-haired Saba, who is full of anger and driven by a ruthless survival instinct. To Saba, Lugh is her light and she is his shadow, he is the day, she is the nighttime, he is beautiful, she is ugly, he is good, she is bad.

So Saba's small world is brutally torn apart, when a group of armed riders arrives five day's after the twin's eighteenth birthday snatch Lugh away. Saba's rage is so wild, that she manages to drive the men away, but not before they have captured Lugh and killed their father.

And here begins Saba's epic quest to rescue Lugh, during which she is tested by trials she could not have imagined, and one that takes the reader on breathtaking ride full or romance, physical adventure and unforgettably vivid characters, making this a truly sensational YA debut novel.

From the Hardcover edition.
MOIRA YOUNG was born in New Westminster, BC, where she attended the University of British Columbia before heading to the UK to study drama. After a few years of performing on the alternative comedy circuit and tap-dancing on a West End stage, Young returned to Vancouver where she successfully trained as an opera singer. Returning to th...
Title:Blood Red Road: Dustlands: 1Format:PaperbackDimensions:464 pages, 8.2 × 5.5 × 1 inPublished:February 28, 2012Publisher:PRH Canada Young ReadersLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0385671857

ISBN - 13:9780385671859

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Rated 4 out of 5 by from pretty good its enjoyable once you get past the awful writing style...
Date published: 2018-05-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it! Loved this series! Saba is a strong female lead and I liked that, although there was love interests involved, she's very independent and is NOT a damsel in distress. The ending to the series was unique and not as cliche as I thought it would be. Left me seriously wanting to know more about this dystopian world and the characters within! The language/grammar was a bit of an adjustment at first, however, I felt it helped create the overall essence of the book and the characters within this world. You get used to it as you get more and more drawn into the book. I would highly recommend this book to readers who enjoyed dystopias like The Hunger Games! #plumrewards
Date published: 2018-05-19
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great read! This book was definitely an unexpectedly good book! The first couple of chapters, I was a bit nervous I wouldn't like the book but the more I read, the better the book got!
Date published: 2018-05-02
Rated 4 out of 5 by from awesome read this book a few years ago, and loved it. It's interesting, and the main girl isn't weak and in need of saving. But the grammar is a little hard to deal with
Date published: 2018-04-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Really Good I was in a reading slump before picking up this book, but this book saved me from that. I love the main character and the things she goes through makes her a very strong character. I love her! Really great story!!
Date published: 2018-04-09
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good book Hard to get used to the narration style, but worth it! I haven't read the last book yet, but this is the best out of the first two. You love Saba and all her flaws and strengths. She can (and does) take on the world, no matter what anyone else says. I love the post apocalyptic - western feel of it.
Date published: 2018-01-31
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Unique Read This is the first book I've read with a written accent so that it forces you to really see how the character reads and interprets things. At first it bothered me, but you get used to it as you keep on reading. The plot was well-written with action, adventure, romance and I actually couldn't really predict the direction of the story.
Date published: 2018-01-13
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Underated! This book blew me away! It had everything I was looking for in a dystopian and delivered. There was great character development, and an interesting premise without an overwhelming love story.
Date published: 2017-12-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Though it is a slow read, Blood Red Road is amazing. With a powerful heroine, loads of action, jokes, and even a bit of romance, this is a must read! #plumreview
Date published: 2017-12-23
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good Very detailed and drawn out, but overall good.
Date published: 2017-12-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Different type of read! I first read this in a school reading club and it was an instant hit for me! The writing style definitely took a while to get used to but the story was so refreshing and an interesting take on the dystopian universe. Highly recommend to anyone that is interested in dystopian YA!
Date published: 2017-11-19
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Blood Red Road It takes a little getting used to the way they speak in this book, but after that it is decent.
Date published: 2017-07-28
Rated 3 out of 5 by from good read the dialogue and writing style took some getting used to but still a decent story.
Date published: 2017-07-04
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Very interesting! While the spelling and grammar is not the best (because the main character is not very educated), the story itself is very thrilling and action packed. At first, I thought I wouldn't be able to read it because it was written so differently and it made my heart ache. However, because of the way that it was written, I felt closer to the character and was able to see more into the character than from what she was just describing. She is brash, strong, determined, and it was refreshing to see her world from her point of view.
Date published: 2017-06-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Blood Red Road So atmospheric and such a strong narrative voice, I loved the heroine. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-06-26
Rated 4 out of 5 by from read and liked The book was good, but the writing style was hard to get used to.
Date published: 2017-05-05
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great I wasn't sure of this at first but I loved the way it was written even if the characters were a little annoying. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-03-18
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Interesting Read I wasn't sure what to expect when I first picked up Blood Red Road, but I was not in any way disappointed. The writing style is unique and really adds to the story.
Date published: 2017-02-22
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Interesting I found the book very interesting since when I first read it, I lied how it focused on her finding her brother. The weird format of the writing too me off guard, it was a bit distracting but it gave the book a more unique dystopian/ post-apocalyptic feel. Over all I loved the book. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-02-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Perfect dystopia novel This book was amazing, the plot, the character development and the style it was written in. I actually decided to get the other 2 book as well, Rebel Heart and Raging Star. By far, my favourite book series! Highly recomend !!
Date published: 2017-01-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great!! I really liked it. It was interesting and fascinating and the plot was well written. The characters were also interesting. Overall, really good read! Highly recommend
Date published: 2017-01-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from One word: Amazing! I know some people may not like the way this book was written (a cross between regular English and "funetic" (phonetic)), but the grammar didn't bother me. As for the story - if you stay up until 4:00 AM to finish the book (yes, I did stay up that late to finish it), you know it's a good one.
Date published: 2017-01-16
Rated 1 out of 5 by from would not recommend Not a fan of the story line. I also did not like the way it was written
Date published: 2017-01-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great! I read this a while ago but it remains to be one of my favourite books, like top two! At first I was iffy about the way the characters speak but grew to love it, it adds character and allows you to fully immerse yourself in this amazing world.
Date published: 2017-01-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from It's great! At first the writing style was a bit confusing, but once you get into it, its very difficult to put the book down! It was a great book, and I recommend it to everyone!
Date published: 2016-12-21
Rated 4 out of 5 by from :) At first, the writing style confused me but then i began to understand it. I have to say, be a little patient with how the book is formatted, because it is not your typical writing style/format. Other than that, i found it to be a great story with driven characters who make sacrifices for the better of others while also intertwining action and adventure into a great epic first novel in the series.
Date published: 2016-12-05
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Super! This book was definitely something else, the writing, the story, and the characters where all very unique and
Date published: 2016-11-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from original, a good surprise I really really liked this book ! It was fast-paced, had awesome characters and great character developments ! It only lacks more worldbuilding but I hope to see more in the sequels
Date published: 2016-11-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing One of my favourite books to this day and I read it four years ago
Date published: 2016-11-13
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Very unique! A unique narration with an action-packed, gritty story line. I loved it!
Date published: 2016-11-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it!! The accent in the book takes some getting use too, but the story is very good and fast paced!
Date published: 2016-07-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from i loved this Love how is is written. Enjoyed readying the book.
Date published: 2016-03-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great read! This book had everything a girl could ask for; action, adventure, suspense, comedy and romance. It has loveable characters, cool animals, and the story really flows smoothly. The dystopian world in this book is just the right amount of savage for the pure need to survive, just what I want in a dystopian novel. The only things that bothered me a little was the country slang (but you get used to it) and the lack of quotations around the dialogue; other than that the book was amazing and I would definitely recommend it to anyone who loves a bad*** chick.
Date published: 2015-06-15
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Nope I hated that it was written the way they speak. I just couldn't deal with the awful grammar and spelling!
Date published: 2015-03-08
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Meh... The slang bothered me. The ending didn't make me feel like I needed to purchase the next book right away.
Date published: 2014-09-19
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Excellent Read Wonderful book. It takes some time adjusting to the style and I sometimes caught myself with a southern accent but it was worth it in the end. I loved the book. Saba is sour and has a bite like fire whiskey but you'll find yourself warming up to her in the end. An action packed read that I highly recommend.
Date published: 2014-06-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Blood Red Road Incredible, loved it
Date published: 2014-02-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Awesome!!! Loved it!!!
Date published: 2014-01-07
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Really enjoyed- Don Scarlett Found this book a lot more enjoyable then I thought I would was a nice read, enjoyed the characters and found myself anxious to get to the end to see what happend
Date published: 2013-12-02
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Upbeat Very fast paced and interesting!
Date published: 2013-09-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Action packed pages Although the statement on the cover was a bit much, I must say this book was truly amazing. I love how being that it was a dystopian book, it brought adventure as well and romance along the way. Some of the characters grew on you whether you liked it or not. And now attached I can't seem to let go! Going to read second book now!
Date published: 2013-09-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Best book ever! This is easily the best book I've ever read. Love, defeat, tragic loss, an epic fight scene. This dystopian has it all.
Date published: 2013-06-17
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Blood Red Road The way it didnt have proper grammer really added to the feel and character of the book. I liked the relationships between the characters especially Jack and Saba, loved the connection between the two of them.
Date published: 2013-06-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The Next Big Thing What a great book. I finished this a year ago and I'm still loving it. This is the next Hunger Games, this is the next big thing!!!! Blood Red Road is way better then Divergent, and boy let me tell you, deserves way more attention then Divergent. TheBookReviewer
Date published: 2013-06-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Pretty good. I loved it. It just took a while for me to adjust to the different vocabulary and spelling of things but I got through and it was worth it. Excited to check out the second book ;).
Date published: 2013-01-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Put on the same pedestal as Hunger Games I had trouble with finding a good book in the Dystopian genre that was on par with The Hunger Games. I thought to myself, nothing will be able to compare. I finally found its’ match. It’s this one. For sure. People who ask for other books like Hunger Games, I yell out Blood Red Road and nothing else. Remember Mad Max? well the world is something like this. Dry, desert, hot. Blazing hot. The setting was so descriptive and rich you can feel the heat, the sweat, and the dryness. It sure seems like a very desolate lonely world, but the world building is wonderful and so rich and detailed. It’s a perfect setting for this type of novel and it’s extremely well done. I loved Saba. She’s tough, she’s gritty, she’s not afraid to get dirty and to fight tooth and nail to get to Lugh. She treats her little sister like dirt, and yes I did find the little kid annoying, I would have hated to be in her shoes if she ever got Saba angry. But, you have to give credit to Emmi, she does talk back. As the story progresses, Emmi does grow on me and she’s definitely got the same strength Saba’s got. I love the bantering between Jack and Saba. There was chemistry there and with Saba’s bad temper it just made their interactions absolutely fun to read at times. The characters overall in this book were excellent. There was nothing to dislike! I also loved the Free Hawks. It was just awesome reading a girl gang who are able to survive on their own! The action scenes are also really good (there’s worm like creatures! it’s like the sandworms from Dune except evil and really really aggressive!!! I squeed when I read this part!) the entire plot of this book was engaging, interesting and could not stop you from reading. It was literally, a page turner. The only thing I had an issue with is Saba’s narration. It’s different, and took me a few tries to follow but you do get used to it as you read through the story. Other than that, fans of the Hunger Games would LOVE THIS! and SHOULD READ THIS! drop everything else and give this one a try. It’s one of the best dystopian books I’ve read that definitely should share the pedestal that the Hunger Games is on.
Date published: 2013-01-16
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Great premise, but I didn't care for the protagonist This YA Dystopian debut by Canadian author, Moira Young, is pretty good. It won numerous literary awards, including: Sunburst Award Nominee for Young Adult (2012), Costa Book Award for Children's Book (2011), Cybils Award for Fantasy & Science Fiction (Young Adult) (2011), and Teen Buckeye Book Award Nominee (2012). Saba and her twin brother, Lugh, are 18 years old. They are as close as siblings can be, and Saba lives and breathes for Lugh. For the most part, they have been raised by their father. Their mother died in childbirth when their younger sister, Emmi, was born when the twins were 10 years old. Saba is resentful of Emmy and blames her for causing their mother's death. Lugh is the kinder one, and he does what he can to make Emmi happy. Saba's father, Willem, reads the stars. Lugh thinks it is nonsense, but Saba believes her father when he warns her to be strong and not give into fear because, one day, Lugh and Emmi and many others will need her. He makes her promise to never give up, and she assures him that she is not a quitter. Four horsemen come, and they take Lugh away. Willem is killed during the melee, and Saba promises Lugh that she will find him. Saba and Emmi now only have each other. Willem always told Saba to go to Crosscreek and find Mercy, who was her mother's friend, should anything happen. It is a three-day journey on foot. Saba explains what has happened and asks Mercy to look after Emmi while she goes off in search for Lugh. Mercy agrees, and Saba sets off. Saba gets captured and is taken to Hopetown, where her head is shaved and she is forced to engage in cage fights against other women. She earns the nickname of "The Angel of Death." There, she meets a mysterious man named Jack who is another cage-fighter. Saba discovers that Lugh has been taken to place in the mountains called Freedom Fields and that the King intends to kill him on Midsummer's Eve. Every six years, an 18 year-old boy who was born on Midwinter's Eve is sacrificed because the King believes that his power will be renewed by the sacrificed boy's spirit. Saba has to find Lugh before it is too late. I thought that the premise of the story was great, but I really did not care for Saba. She is self-absorbed and selfish, and I loathed the way that she treated Emmi. I felt really sad for Emmi, having been brought into a world where no one really cared for her. Willem was never the same after his wife died, and Saba rebuffed Emmi because she was the reason why their mother died. If it wasn't for Lugh, Emmi would have had a miserable existence. What is even more heart-breaking is that Emmi is used to the neglect and does not expect anything more from Saba! So sad. Saba does evolve during the course of the book, and she ends up a better person than she started out. I do like how Young showed Saba's strength in the face of adversity. Aside from having a hard time embracing the heroine of the story, Saba, I had a really hard time with the dialog in the story. Nearly every line of dialog ends with either "I says," "he says," or "she says." It is so redundant, and there is no variation. Heather Lind is a new-to-me narrator, and I had a hard time with her narration in the beginning. Her soft-spoken voice practically lulled me to sleep, and it took a while before I was able to get into the story. She was "just okay" for me. Overall, I like the book enough to want to read the next book in the series, Rebel Heart, which was released in October 2012. I received this audiobook from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive any compensation for my review, and the views expressed herein are my own.
Date published: 2012-12-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from This made my blood stuir! :D Blood red road made my blood stuir and totally hade me hooked! I loved the character's wild personaleties and how they were all different but tied together in some way.I loved the way the author described everything and I love the way the plot played out. The plot was great and I loved every bit of it! A great read! :D
Date published: 2012-11-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from One of the best books i have read in a long time! Red blood road is a fantastic novel for anyone who likes action, adventure, and romance. I think i like it more then The Hunger Games, and i read that book over four times now! I recently read this book again for a second time, and i loved it as much, maybe even more, then i did the first time. I fell in love will all of the characters right from the start of the book. This is a must read for all fans of the hunger games!
Date published: 2012-09-09
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Better books out there Okay. This book was trying a little too hard. Patrick Ness' Chaos Walking series had probably played a role in the making of this book. And please belive me when I tell you that Ness' books are about as good as you can get. Everything from the inccorect spelling like "jest" for just, "'ud" for would and "eether" for either was very Chaos Walking. BUT WHAT WAS YOUNG THINKIN WHEN SHE DECIDED HER CHARACTER WOULD USE THE WORD "AN" AS APOSE TO "AND"??? -le sigh- I had to do a double take every time an appeared and tell myself: "Okay she means and". It's one thing to express your characters' lack of proper education through moderate amount of "quirkiness" and it's another to bombard the page with "waitin", "an", and "jest". Ugh. Please stop trying so hard, Ms. Young. Young had obviously missed out on her high school biology class. In one part of her book, she describes the death of Saba's Ma as a result of over bleeding during childbirth. "She bled for two days then she died." .....Umm excuse me Miss. DID I JUST READ SHE BLED FOR TWO DAYS? LOL. WUT?! That can only occur if the wound was very small, in which case your body will quickly repair itself. Or she had taken some blood thinner but that would mean she would have bled out WAY earlier than 2 days. I just can't believe such rediculous claim can be published. Okay. I get it's only fiction but at least make it a little bit believable. I couldn't feel sympathetic for Saba and her family after that. It just make me doubt everything that was said about her Ma. Did I mention Young tried too hard?? Oh yeah. I did. Here's another reasion she pushed me to dislike this book. Saba is described in every way worst than her brother (except at skipping rocks). He can fix the roof while can only this and only that. HE EVEN IS IMMUNE TO GETTING SUNBURNS A:THOUGH HIS HAIR IS BLONDE WHILE SABA'S IS BLACK. Hey, Young. Just FYI. People with darker hair colour have a dark skin tone due to the fact that they have more melanin. It's an evolutionary change so please stop trolling with me. Saba can't be that bad. Because out of no where she was able to kick ass like it's nobody's business. One moment she was the girl that hands the tools to her brother, then the next she was the Kung Fu master. LOL. Please. I could not have finished this book. Please please please pick up Patrick Ness' The Knife of Never Letting Go because I promise you it is a better book than this. I knew I wouldn't be able to read on with Blood Red Road or I might have to stab it with the basilisk's fang.
Date published: 2012-08-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Stunning! This book was unreal, right from start to finish. Saba is an 18 year old girl who goes on a journey of a lifetime alongside her younger sister, Emmi and a group of others to save her twin brother, Lugh who was taken away by a group of Tonton one morning at Silverlake. Saba's adventure is filled with terrifying encounters, close to death experiences and blooming romance, which makes for a most amazing read. I seriously cannot wait until the next instalment in the 'Blood Red Road' series comes out! Also, Saba reminds me of Katniss Everdeen in 'The Hunger Games;' her determination, stubbornness and strength are all very similar characteristics. Although I'd have to say, 'Blood Red Road' is much better than The Hunger Games!" Just wonderful! :)
Date published: 2012-06-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Blood Red Road is Bloody Awesome! ***If you liked the Hunger Games, than you will LOVE this*** Blood Red Road is an awesome post-apocalyptic teen novel that will blow you away. Saba (our heroine) and her family live a quiet and sequestered life until 4 claoked horsemen abduct her brother, Lugh during a red dust storm. The novel chronicles her search to get him back and the adventures she encounters. This book has all the requirements of a good post apocalyptic read - gladiatorial fights (always a favourite of mine), mutant worm-things, a band of butt-kicking girl warriors, a tyrannical self-proclaimed 'king', a sexy boy and some epic battles!!!! I am looking forward to reading more of the books in this new Dustlands series :) *If you love post apocalyptic fiction, check out my top ten 10 list of the best P.A. novels, in my opinion (in adult fiction)*
Date published: 2012-05-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Teen Review from Esther's Ever After This is one of those books where you either hate it, or you love it. I was anticipating for this book to be alright, but what I didn't expect was to love it as much as I did. Reasons to Read: 1. Saba Saba is actually a really interesting person to read about. She's rude, callous, and incredibly strong. Usually, people like that tend to turn me off. But for Saba, it really worked. While I said that she was fairly insensitive, I could really tell just how much she loved Lugh. From page one, he is mentioned in only the highest regards. When he was taken, I felt her pain. I could tell that the amount that because she loved Lugh so much, losing him was making her go mad. Maybe it was just me, but I when I was reading some times, she really seemed to be losing her grip on her sanity. She's completely disinterested in helping anybody else but herself, but I found that I couldn't help but like her. I mean, she had every single reason to be as hard and bitter as she was. She was a completely realistic character that I thoroughly enjoyed. 2. The Post-Apocalyptic World The world that Saba and all the other characters live in I found to be thoroughly enjoyable. After the apocalypse happens, the world is basically one big wasteland. Unlike some other novels set in the future, there wasn't really any amazing technology. Some things were different, such as a sand-surfing ship, but nothing too out of the ordinary. I really liked the way that it was explained, too. The world is really, really messed up, which I found to be a cool take. You can't really trust anyone in this world, and nobody has a reason to trust you. Everyone in this world wants something, and is working purely for themselves. 3. The Adventure If you couldn't tell from the title, Blood Red Road, this novel's main focus is Saba's journey to find her brother Lugh. While there were some delays in this journey, I thought that it was thoroughly enjoyable. There are a full range of characters out, all with unique personalities. Aside from that, the action was awesome! There were tons of battles, and fights, and chase scenes that I found to be exhilerating. I was excited, scared, and just plain frustrated throughout the entire adventure. The adventure was thoroughly enjoyable. 4. The Language This is probably the most controversial part of the book. Saba has a very thick southern-style accent, and the book is written that way. While I found it disorienting at first, I got used to it by the end of the novel. I actually really liked it, and thought it fit in really well to the story. If you don't mind reading a little bit of broken English, then I don't think that you will mind to much. Although I did love this book, the one thing that I didn't like was how there were no quotation marks around the characters' dialogues. This was a bit disorienting at times, when I thought Saba would be saying something, but it would actually just be in her thoughts. Overall though, I think that this book was really well done and exceeded by expectations.
Date published: 2012-05-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Lose yourself in this fab story The Good Stuff Sorta have a crush on Jack with his swagger and his cockiness - love me those kind of boys (Yes I try to pretend he's not that young, don't want to be called a cougar or anything) Author is Canadian Had a Mad Max sorta feel to it - that is how I pictured the world they lived in -- not as violent as Mad Max of course -- as it is marketed towards YA Saba is a strong feisty heroine and there is some great character development with her - didn't always understand her decisions, but I still liked her Love Nero - I want me a bird like that Like the intriguing secondary characters and want to know more about them Exciting fast paced story - on the edge of your seat moments good use of humour - right when you need it most Strong female AND male characters - working together Fabulous ending Just a really good adventure tale to lose yourself in for a while Author is Canadian - yes I know I mentioned that fact already - but I'm Canadian and well I have to promote a fellow Canuck (and yes I know she lives in England now) The Not So Good Stuff sort of creeped out for her obsessive love for her brother, but maybe its a twin thing I don't get the appeal of Lugh - but maybe we will get to know him more The writing style took a little to get into at first, but keep going it really does add to the story Favorite Quotes/Passages "There ain't nuthin written in the stars. There ain't no great plan. The world goes on. Our lives jest go on and on in this gawdfersaken place. An that's it. Till the day we die." "Sometimes I think, if only I'd come earlier, if only I'd been there, maybe Allis would have lived. But you cain't think like that. If you do, you'll make yourself crazy. I did get there in time to keep you alive, red little scrap that you were, and I comfort myself with that." "I ain't never seen a creature like that before, she says. He's so smart, he's -- More like a person than a bird? I says. Yeah, she says. That's it. Whatever you do, I says, don't tell him that. I'll never hear the end of it." Who Should/Shouldn't Read Fans of dystopian and post-apocalyptic fiction will enjoy Will appeal to both adult and YA readers - there isn't too much angst and adult bashing so us older readers won't get offended I can see the Hunger Games comparisons, but don't read it based on that - it is different 4.5 Dewey's I received this from Random House in exchange for an honest review
Date published: 2012-03-15
Rated 4 out of 5 by from An Incredible Addition To The Genre Strong and diligent Sada has spent her entire life living in Silverlake, a now dried-up wasteland disturbed by constant sandstorms. The long hated Wreckers have long been gone leaving an abundance of landfills for Saba and her family. Everything is routine until Saba's twin brother, Lugh, is captured by four cloaked horsemen during a monstrous sandstorm. With her loving twin brother captured, Saba embarks on a journey to bring him back. Leaving Silverlake wasn't what she expected. She enters a ugly and lawless world where she begins to learn things she never knew about herself. The post-apocalyptic genre is one that is quickly growing and gaining massive popularity. With the addition of Moira Young's Blood Red Road, I really don't think it can get much better than this! With a brand new look, that I absolutely adore by the way, Moira Young's debut novel that entranced her readers and had young adult readers raving is finally out in paperback. Diving into the title, I immediately noticed something peculiar about the writing. Nothing negative or unappealing mind you, but it was something that instantly stood out to me. Blood Red Road is told through Saba's point of view, and uniquely enough also written in her dialect. I know many readers are wondering what I'm speaking of, but I humbly direct you to this quote from the novel for better understanding; "We ain't had a drop of rain fer near six months now. Even the spring that feeds the lake's startin to run dry. You gotta walk some ways out now to fill a bucket. Pretty soon, there won't be no point in callin it by its name. Silverlake." Admittedly so, dialect and writing similar to this can sometimes turn off a reader, I know I had an unbelievably difficult time getting used to it. However, I found it so brilliantly essential to the story in Blood Red Road and it's characters that I didn't really mind at all. Sada was a character that I instantly fell in love with. Her brutish and impeccably strong narration drove me wild with excitement. She was strong, intelligent, and used the heavy burdens on her shoulders as a means of pushing herself to keep moving forward. The action and storyline in Blood Red Road was unpredictably exciting and wonderful - it was extremely refreshing for it's genre. As a very promising beginning to the Dustland series, I absolutely cannot wait to see where Moira Young takes our beloved characters! Blood Red Road by Moira Young has it all; a strong protagonist, an interesting narrative, and an unpredictable storyline. Young adult readers will find themselves wanting to add this one to their already growing reading pile, it's one post-apocalyptic title you do not want to miss out on!
Date published: 2012-02-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Different type of Dystopian I was worried that I would dislike the narrative style, but I got used to it so fast, I actually appreciated how it was written. Saba isn't your typical heroine, and her upbringing makes her the fiercely loyal person she is in Blood Red Road. She can't read or write, so it made sense that her narration is the way it is. That's not to say Saba is stupid-- she's smart, resourceful, and very brave. There are parts in the middle, especially during Hopetown, that the book drags. Still, the narration is simple and to the point and has very little moping, a personal pet peeve in books. Saba doesn't have time to sit around and worry and pine over the future. She has a goal and a drive to get things done. And the romance. This is probably what I didn't like overly much. I had to keep reminding myself that Saba is 18, not 14, in the way she acts around Jack. But when she finally gets over her reservations, the romance is very sweet and honest. Despite a few not so great things, Blood Red Road really deserves five stars.
Date published: 2011-12-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Epic adventure! Another book I wish I'd sooner!! Blood Red Road is such an epic action-adventure novel, and I was so engrossed in Saba's story as she went through so many hardships to get her brother back. The characters are amazing, the plot is fantastic, the villains are super shady, and there's even a little mystery at the end to leave you intrigued and itching for more. The romance isn't front and centre but it's definitely burning in the background let me tell you! Don't let the dialect intimidate you, this is definitely an awesome book you have to read! ~~ Once I finished Blood Red Road, I was filled with regret...that I hadn't read this awesome book sooner! I had started it when it was available on Galley Grab and the few pages I read with the strange wording and the imposing length of the ebook had me cringing and putting it down to maybe get to it upon its release. Well, I finally got to it and I am very impressed. Probably one of my fave reads of 2011. Twins Lugh and Saba are unseperable. Like night and day, sun and moon, Saba's convinced she's nothing without Lugh, that he makes her a better person. So when four cloaked horsemen ride in on the worst sandstorm they've ever seen, take down their father and kidnap Lugh, Saba is left reeling. What follows is indeed a quest of freaking EPIC proportions as Saba journeys to get back her brother, willing to face anyone who stands in her way. Oh my goodness this book was awesome! I'll admit the writing, with its misspellings and missing punctuation, threw me off at first, but once I found myself quickly engrossed with the story, it became just a natural thing, not at all a hindrance. Definitely reminiscent of the Chaos Walking series, another amazing set of books. Saba was a formidable and stubborn main character, the kind of girl who has one goal in mind and will do whatever's necessary to get to it. Though she downplays her importance by comparing herself to her enigmatic golden twin a lot, to see her mature and gain more self confidence, realize she's her own person and not just half a pair, was eye-opening and inspiring. This also plays into her acceptance of her younger sister, Emmi, who I adored. Saba has a bit of a sore spot for Emmi because their mother died while giving birth to her, which was totally unfair. Her treatment of Emmi was especially disheartening to me because it made me think of my sister and how I'd do anything for her. They are still a family though, the only ones they have at the moment, and not only do they grow closer over the novel, Emmi also becomes quite the firecracker haha. The action and adventure in Blood Red Road was also a very high point in the novel. Saba finds herself captured and thrown into cage fighting matches, a bloodthirsty sport she's surprisingly good at, using her rage to fuel her fists to overcome her numerous opponents. She meets the charming Jack and the fierce girl gang The Free Hawks, gaining some eager and willing helpers to aid her in bringing down the men that took her brother. They trek across deserts, mountains and rivers and face some creepy creatures to get to their destination in time. It sort of reminded me of the Lord of the Rings, where this diverse gang of people all group together to help each other out across a vast and dangerous landscape--so exciting!! Then there was Jack. I loved Jack! He was teasing and charming and handsome and totally got under Saba's skin, riling her up to no end. Their interactions were totally hilarious, but also frustrating, because Saba was stubborn as an ox and didn't want to get too close to anyone and Jack's retorts usually didn't better the situation. I really enjoy characters who start out hating each other though; all the tension makes for a more exciting conclusion ;D I also gotta mention Saba's pet crow Nero! You're probably thinking 'a crow? Seriously Laura, how exciting can a bird be?' Guys. Nero's gotta be one of my favourite animal characters in a book, and I can't think of any riight now but he's up there! He fancies himself more human than bird (but don't tell him that) and I found myself wanting to know what it's like to snuggle with a bird. Plus he's totally a hero. Go Nero! Original review here:
Date published: 2011-12-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from One of My Favourite Dystopians of All Time!!! Once I saw the cover of this book and read it's synopsis, I knew I'd buy this book and read it as soon as I got home. That's exactly what I did... an and lemme' just say that I could not be anymore happier that I found this book. On top of that, Moira Young is a native of Canada, how could this get any better? Blood Red Road was an absolutely fantastic dystopian. When I think back to when I read this I remember smiling, laughing and gasping while I was on the edge of my seat. It was incredibly thrilling and the action was amazing! My heart was racing throughout the intense moments and I was just so immersed into this book! It was insanely great! Moira Young creates an amazing world for this book, it was one of the reasons why I loved this book so much. It's a dystopian world where it resembles a desert. The land has been ravaged by sand storms and the heat is unbearable. At moments, I felt that I was in Moira's world feeling the sand slap against my cheek and the heat roasting the top of my head. It was an incredible feeling to be so captured and immersed in a book. Along with the setting, there are some wickedly awesome characters that took the story to another level. Our main character is Saba, and she lives with her twin brother Lugh, her sister Emmi and her father. Saba has a relationship with her brother like no other. Saba sees Lugh as her better half; the better looking one, the stronger one and the braver one. She doesn't know what she would do without Lugh, he is everything to her. On the other hand, Saba doesn't have the greatest relationship with her younger sister. They don't get along and Saba blames Emmi for the death of their mother. She died giving birth to Emmi and Saba hasn't let that go and makes Emmi feel as though she's responsible. Saba doesn't love her sister, but she loves her brother and her father. And one day, all of that will be tested. As a sandstorm brews, men on horses gallop through. Before you know it, they have captured Lugh and killed Saba's father. Saba is thrown into an adventure where she has to find her brother and find her true identity along the way. She always associated her self as the weaker half, but soon she will learn that she is a fierce fighter and she has underestimated herself all these years. Along the way, Saba must also travel with Emmi and mend their broken relationship. It's one of the reasons why I loved this book, the adventure allowed Saba to grow in so many ways. Saba's adventure brings new conflicts, challenges and friendships. She meets Jack and a group of girls called The Free Hawks who will assist Saba in her journey. In the beginning, I didn't know if I would like this book. The writing is very different from any other book. Moira Young does not use quotation marks around dialogue, which was a little hard to get used to. Also, Moira Young uses slang, which was very different. Don't give up on this book in the beginning because of this, I was so glad I didn't! You won't regret reading this book, it's stellar! 5/5 2011-028
Date published: 2011-10-23
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Love and war in the desert I read this book on the recommendation of others and since I love post-apocalyptic stories, it seemed a natural choice. The story takes place somewhere in North America and the climate throughout the novel is desert - very much like a Mad Max movie. In fact, the whole book felt very much like a Mad Max movie with the arena fighting and comical but cruel rulers. The story is written in a first person style through the eyes of our heroine, Saba. She is on a quest to find and free her brother who is taken at the beginning by henchmen of the king. The king, who fancies himself to be Louis the XIV, is anxious to sacrifice the brother on Midsummer's Eve in order to gain immortality. The story is fast-paced and the setting is typical for this type of tale - ruined civilization that is picked over by the desperate survivors. I had some difficulties gettting through this book, however, since I found myself not really liking the main character and since the story is told through her vantage point, this presents a problem. I found her to be petty, dour and just not very interesting (plus she talks like a hillbilly). I don't mind character flaws in the hero but there was simply nothing here I liked. In addition, her infatuation with Jack that she refuses to acknowledge becomes very wearisome halfway through the book (kiss him and get it over with - geesh). The book lacked the post-apocalyptic realism of The Road or On the Beach and it also doesn't fit in to the more fantastic and colourful P.A stories such as Planet of the Apes or Heiro's Journey. It is in a muddled drab middle ground. In my opinion, this was a so-so teen romance dressed up in a P.A world. Apparently this is the first book of a series but I really don't feel tempted to find out what happens next.
Date published: 2011-10-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from AMAZING this book was just amazing! i read this right after reading the harry potter series so it took a bit of getting used to the writing but i kept reading it and i found myself hooked it is full of action it really keeps you interested and excited. I RECOMD THIS BOOK BIG TIME!!!!!!!
Date published: 2011-09-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Patrick Ness... watch out!! I love dytopian novels. I have to admit that The Hunger Games was my first ever introduction to this genre and I have been hooked ever since. I would have to say that Patrick Ness's The Chaos Walking series is hands-down my favourtie dytopian triology... until I picked up Blood Red Road. I am on pins and needles waiting for the next book.
Date published: 2011-09-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Took Me By Surprise! When I first started reading Blood Red Road, I had this horrible feeling I wasn't going to like the novel. You see, it's written in dialect... and previously before, I had never read anything like it. I struggled a bit with the first thirty or so pages, trying to grasp the imperfect language that seemed far from being structured and polished. But after a certain point, getting completely lost in the story became suddenly very easy and soon, I seemed to be flying through the pages! Many of the dystopian novels being released lately have focused more on the political aspects of a flawed society, but Blood Red Road is more focused on Saba trying to rescue her brother and the epic adventure she'll have to partake to make this happen. Don't get me wrong, we do learn about the cruel world Saba has been born into but there was never really a need to get into the major details unless it was required. The result is an action-packed novel filled with plenty of suspense and danger! Moira Young has created a fantastic cast of characters in her debut novel and each one has their own unique personalities that seem to jump right off the pages. Saba's growth throughout the novel is subtly shown as she gains more experience in her travels. She would do anything to save her twin brother, Lugh, but she despises her younger sister, Emmi, and doesn't even bother to hide it. Yes, she can be cold and rather selfish, but at the same time, you can't help but greatly admire her tremendous fortitude and resilience in the face of great obstacles. And then, of course, there's Emmi, who would do anything to prove herself; the fierce Free Hawks, willing to take action to protect others; Jack, our romantic interest and a charming thief; and well, there are more I could talk about but I won't. Each character introduced in the novel really did make the story all the better! The narration is very much a reflection of Saba's personality. She's not a young woman of many words nor one for long, poetic descriptions... so the descriptions are more observant, practical and to the point. With this in mind, a brisk pacing is set and pushes the story quickly along before your mind is left to wander aimlessly. You won't even dare flip forward a few pages because you'll always be captivated by the events as you're reading them! Blood Red Road took me completely by surprise and surpassed all of my expectations! It's the first novel in the Dustlands trilogy, so I'm definitely very eager to see what's going to happen next in the second book! Once you get a feel for the writing style and Saba's narration, you'll have a difficult time putting the novel down as you're caught up in an exciting, gripping tale of survival and hope. Give this novel a chance... you won't regret it. You can also read this review at:
Date published: 2011-06-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Holy COW! It's been ages since I haven't read something THIS GOOD!!! Holy Molly!!!!!!!!!!!!! I barely slept last night thinking about it!! This was waaaaaaay too good! It kinda remind me a little bit of the Hunger Games and Finniking of The Rock! This is one of those books that have so much in so little. This is a rich read in every single way. Blood Red Road absorbed me since the 3 first pages of the book. Those pages that are not even part of the first chapter! At the beginning it was a bit weird reading this kind of narration, but a couple of pages later my eyes got used to the style and flew over the written lines. I think this book wouldn't have reached the same quality if it'd had been written differently. Once you get used to the voice and dialect, you really feel you are somewhere else, somewhere faaaaaar from your reading place. In fact, this book feels real and I really feet I went through all this Blood Red Road. The characters... Oh the Characters! From our protagonist Saba (who we follow all the way through the book) to DeMalo (who says like two sentences and appears no more than a couple of times in this whole adventure) can delight you with their presence and charms. Jack (oh my Jack!), Maev, Ike, Tommo, Ash, Epona, Lugh, Emmi, Nero!!! oh Nero! I so want to know more about you! (and he's a crow), Hermes (who's a horse) and even the freaking King!...and so many others. They are so well build, their strength and flaws, their charms and fears. OMG! I just love every single one of them. I felt empathy, sympathy, love and hate towards them. When authors, as a writers and artists, makes their readers feel this much, is one of the greatest achievements! When I was only on page 32 I had my first OMG! and WTF! moment in the book (yes both at the same time! pretty badass!) I couldn't believe all the information I had in only 32 pages and how the story took off in such a powerful way. I don't want to give anything away. In fact, if you can read the book without even reading the jacket, that would be awesome! Discover every single detail on your own through this Road. So just get the book, close your eyes, flip to the first page, now open your eyes and... from now on, you wont be able to stop. Visit my blog
Date published: 2011-06-06
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Exciting Dystopian Novel "We ain't had a drop of rain fer near six months now. Even the spring that feeds the lake's startin to run dry. You gotta walk some ways out now to fill a bucket. Pretty soon, there won't be no point in callin it by its name. Silverlake." Strong and diligent Sada has spent her entire life living in Silverlake, a now dried-up wasteland disturbed by constant sandstorms. The long hated Wreckers have long been gone leaving an abundance of landfills for Saba and her family. Everything is routine until Saba's twin brother, Lugh, is captured by four cloaked horsemen during a monstrous sandstorm. With her loving twin brother captured, Saba embarks on a journey to bring him back. Leaving Silverlake wasn't what she expected. She enters a ugly and lawless world where she begins to learn things she never knew about herself. Dystopian novels are hitting the reading world, and they are hitting with force. Blood Red Road is an excited and highly anticipated dystopian novel written by Moira Young. Blood Red Road captured me instantly with it's impeccably strong narration and interesting protagonist. Sada is a strong and intelligent character, with a heavy burden on her shoulders and a different perspective that readers can relate to. The action and storyline was amazing and Moira's vocabulary was extremely refreshing. As a promised first installment to the Dustland series, I am anxiously anticipating it's sequel. Blood Red Road is an excellent must-read for young adult readers who enjoy strong protagonists, interesting narratives, a deep storyline and action.
Date published: 2011-05-17

Read from the Book

The day’s hot. So hot an so dry that all I can taste in my mouth is dust. The kinda white heat day when you can hear th’earth crack. We ain’t had a drop of rain fer near six months now. Even the spring that feeds the lake’s startin to run dry. You gotta walk some ways out now to fill a bucket. Pretty soon, there won’t be no point in callin it by its name. Silverlake. Every day Pa tries another one of his charms or spells. An every day, big bellied rainclouds gather on the horizon. Our hearts beat faster an our hopes rise as they creep our way. But, well before they reach us, they break apart, thin out an disappear. Every time. Pa never says naught. He jest stares at the sky, the clear cruel sky. Then he gathers up the stones or twigs or whatever he’s set out on the ground this time, an puts ’em away fer tomorrow. Today, he shoves his hat back. Tips his head up an studies the sky fer a long while. I do believe I’ll try a circle, he says. Yuh, I reckon a circle might be jest the thing. Lugh’s bin sayin it fer a while now. Pa’s gittin worse. With every dry day that passes, a little bit more of Pa seems to . . . I guess disappear’s the best word fer it. Once we could count on pullin a fish from the lake an a beast from our traps. Fer everythin else, we planted some, foraged some, an, all in all, we made out okay. But fer the last year, whatever we do, however hard we try, it jest ain’t enough. Not without rain. We bin watchin the land die, bit by bit. An it’s the same with Pa. Day by day, what’s best in him withers away. Mind you, he ain’t bin right fer a long time. Not since Ma died. But what Lugh says is true. Jest like the land, Pa’s gittin worse an his eyes look more’n more to the sky instead of what’s here in front of him. I don’t think he even sees us no more. Not really. Emmi runs wild these days, with filthy hair an a runny nose. If it warn’t fer Lugh, I don’t think she’d ever wash at all. Before Emmi was born, when Ma was still alive an everythin was happy, Pa was different. Ma could always make him laugh. He’d chase me an Lugh around, or throw us up over his head till we shrieked fer him to stop. An he’d warn us about the wickedness of the world beyond Silverlake. Back then, I didn’t think there could be anybody ever lived who was taller or stronger or smarter’n our pa. I watch him outta the corner of my eye while me an Lugh git on with repairs to the shanty roof. The walls is sturdy enough, bein that they’re made from tires all piled one on top of th’other. But the wicked hotwinds that whip across the lake sneak their way into the smallest chink an lift whole parts of the roof at once. We’re always havin to mend the damn thing. So, after last night’s hotwind, me an Lugh was down at the landfill at first light scavenging. We dug around a part of it we ain’t never tried before an damn if we didn’t manage to score ourselves some primo Wrecker junk. A nice big sheet of metal, not too rusted, an a cookin pot that’s still got its handle. Lugh works on the roof while I do what I always do, which is clamber up an down the ladder an hand him what he needs. Nero does what he always does, which is perch on my shoulder an caw real loud, right in my ear, to tell me what he’s thinkin. He’s always got a opinion does Nero, an he’s real smart too. I figger if only we could unnerstand crow talk, we’d find he was tellin us a thing or two about the best way to fix a roof. He’ll of thought about it, you can bet on that. He’s watched us fix it fer five year now. Ever since I found him fell outta the nest an his ma nowhere to be seen. Pa warn’t too happy to see me bring a crow babby home. He told me some folk consider crows bring death, but I was set on rearin him by hand an once I set my mind on somethin I stick with it. An then there’s Emmi. She’s doin what she always does, which is pester me an Lugh. She dogs my heels as I go from the ladder to the junk pile an back. I wanna help, she says. Hold the ladder then, I says. No! I mean really help! All you ever let me do is hold the ladder! Well, I says, maybe that’s all yer fit fer. You ever think of that? She folds her arms across her skinny little chest an scowls at me. Yer mean, she says. So you keep tellin me, I says. I start up the ladder, a piece of rusty metal in my hand, but I ain’t gone more’n three rungs before she takes hold an starts shakin it. I grab on to stop myself from fallin. Nero squawks an fl aps off in a flurry of feathers. I glare down at Em. Cut that out! I says. What’re you tryin to do, break my neck? Lugh’s head pops over the side of the roof. All right, Em, he says, that’s enough. Go help Pa. Right away, she lets go. Emmi always does what Lugh tells her. But I wanna help you, she says with her sulky face. We don’t need yer help, I says. We’re doin jest fine without you. Yer the meanest sister that ever lived! I hate you, Saba! Good! Cuz I hate you too! That’s enough! says Lugh. Both of yuz! Emmi sticks her tongue out at me an stomps off. I shin up the ladder onto the roof, crawl along an hand him the metal sheet. I swear I’m gonna kill her one of these days, I says. She’s only nine, Saba, says Lugh. You might try bein nice to her fer a change. I grunt an hunker down nearby. Up here on the roof, I can see everythin. Emmi ridin around on her rickety two-wheeler that Lugh found in the landfill. Pa at his spell circle. It ain’t nuthin more’n a bit of ground that he leveled off by stompin it down with his boots. We ain’t permitted nowhere near it, not without his say so. He’s always fussin around, sweepin clear any twigs or sand that blow onto it. He ain’t set out none of the sticks fer his rain circle on the ground yet. I watch as he lays down the broom. Then he takes three steps to the right an three steps to the left. Then he does it agin. An agin. You seen what Pa’s up to? I says to Lugh. He don’t raise his head. Jest starts hammerin away at the sheet to straighten it. I seen, he says. He did it yesterday too. An the day before. What’s all that about? I says. Goin right, then left, over an over. How should I know? he says. His lips is pressed together in a tight line. He’s got that look on his face agin. The blank look he gits when Pa says somethin or asks him to do somethin. I see it on him more an more these days. Lugh! Pa lifts his head, shadin his eyes. I could use yer help here, son! Foolish old man, Lugh mutters. He gives the metal sheet a extra hard whack with the hammer. Don’t say that, I says. Pa knows what he’s doin. He’s a star reader. Lugh looks at me. Shakes his head, like he cain’t believe I jest said what I did. Ain’t you figgered it out yet? It’s all in his head. Made up. There ain’t nuthin written in the stars. There ain’t no great plan. The world goes on. Our lives jest go on an on in this gawdfersaken place. An that’s it. Till the day we die. I tell you what, Saba, I’ve took about all I can take. I stare at him. Lugh! Pa yells. I’m busy! Lugh yells back. Right now, son! Lugh swears unner his breath. He throws the hammer down, pushes past me an pratikally runs down the ladder. He rushes over to Pa. He snatches the sticks from him an throws ’em to the ground. They scatter all over. There! Lugh shouts. There you go! That should help! That should make the gawdam rain come! He kicks Pa’s new-swept spell circle till the dust flies. He pokes his finger hard into Pa’s chest. Wake up, old man! Yer livin in a dream! The rain ain’t never gonna come! This hellhole is dyin an we’re gonna die too if we stay here. Well, guess what? I ain’t doin it no more! I’m outta here! I knew this would come, says Pa. The stars told me you was unhappy, son. He reaches out an puts a hand on Lugh’s arm. Lugh flings it off so fierce it makes Pa stagger backwards. Yer crazy, you know that? Lugh shouts it right in his face. The stars told you! Why don’t you jest try listenin to what I say fer once? He runs off. I hurry down the ladder. Pa’s starin at the ground, his shoulders slumped. I don’t unnerstand, he says. I see the rain comin. . . . I read it in the stars but . . . it don’t come. Why don’t it come? It’s okay, Pa, says Emmi. I’ll help you. I’ll put ’em where you want. She scrabbles about on her knees, collectin all the sticks. She looks at him with a anxious smile. Lugh didn’t mean it Pa, she says. I know he didn’t. I go right on past ’em. I know where Lugh’s headed. I find him at Ma’s rock garden. He sits on the ground, in the middle of the swirlin patterns, the squares an circles an little paths made from all different stones, each their own shade an size. Every last tiny pebble set out by Ma with her own hands. She wouldn’t allow that anybody should help her. She carefully laid the last stone in place. Sat back on her heels an smiled at me, rubbin at her big babby-swolled belly. Her long golden hair in a braid over one shoulder. There! You see, Saba? There can be beauty anywhere. Even here. An if it ain’t there, you can make it yerself. The day after that, she birthed Emmi. A month too early. Ma bled fer two days, then she died. We built her funeral pyre high an sent her spirit back to the stars. Once we’d scattered her ash to the winds, all we was left with was Em. A ugly little red scrap with a heartbeat like a whisper. More like a newborn mouse than a person. By rights, she shouldn’t of lasted longer’n a day or two. But somehow she hung on an she’s still here. Small fer her age though, an scrawny. Fer a long time, I couldn’t stand even lookin at her. When Lugh says I shouldn’t be so hard on her, I says that if it warn’t fer Emmi, Ma ’ud still be alive. He ain’t got no answer to that cuz he knows it’s true, but he always shakes his head an says somethin like, It’s time you got over it, Saba, an that kinda thing. I put up with Emmi these days, but that’s about as far as it goes. Now I set myself down on the hard-packed earth so’s my back leans against Lugh’s. I like it when we sit like this. I can feel his voice rumble inside my body when he talks. It must of bin like this when the two of us was inside Ma’s belly together. Esseptin that neether of us could talk then, of course. We sit there fer a bit, silent. Then, We should of left here a long time ago, he says. There’s gotta be better places’n this. Pa should of took us away. You ain’t really leavin, I says. Ain’t I? There ain’t no reason to stay. I cain’t jest sit aroundwaitin to die. Where would you go? It don’t matter. Anywhere, so long as it ain’t Silverlake. But you cain’t. It’s too dangerous. We only got Pa’s word fer that. You do know that you an me ain’t ever bin more’n one day’s walk in any direction our whole lives. We never see nobody essept ourselves. That ain’t true, I says. What about that crazy medicine woman on her camel last year? An . . . we see Potbelly Pete. He’s always got a story or two about where he’s bin an who he’s seen. I ain’t talkin about some shyster pedlar man stoppin by every couple of months, he says. By the way, I’m still sore about them britches he tried to unload on me last time. They was hummin all right, I says. Like a skunk wore ’em last. Hey wait, you fergot Procter. Our only neighbor’s four leagues north of here. He’s a lone man, name of Procter John. He set up homestead jest around the time Lugh an me got born. He drops by once a month or so. Not that he ever stops proper, mind. He don’t git down offa his horse, Hob, but jest pulls up by the hut. Then he says the same thing, every time. G’day, Willem. How’s the young ’uns? All right? They’re fi ne, Procter, says Pa. You? Well enough to last a bit longer. Then he tips his hat an goes off an we don’t see him fer another month. Pa don’t like him. He never says so, but you can tell. You’d think he’d be glad of somebody to talk to besides us, but he never invites Procter to stay an take a dram. Lugh says it’s on account of the chaal. We only know that’s what it’s called because one time I asked Pa what it is that Procter’s always chewin an Pa’s face went all tight an it was like he didn’t wanna tell us. But then he said it’s called chaal an it’s poison to the mind an soul, an if anybody ever offers us any we’re to say no. But since we never see nobody, such a offer don’t seem too likely. Now Lugh shakes his head. You cain’t count Procter John, he says. Nero’s got more conversation than him. I swear, Saba, if I stay here, I’ll eether go crazy or I’ll end up killin Pa. I gotta go. I scramble around, kneel in front of him. I’m comin with you, I says. Of course, he says. An we’ll take Emmi with us. I don’t think Pa ’ud let us, I says. An she wouldn’t wanna go anyways. She’d rather stay with him. You mean you’d rather she stayed, he says. We gotta take her with us, Saba. We cain’t leave her behind. What about . . . maybe if you was to talk to Pa, he might see sense, I says. Then we could all go to a new place together. He won’t, Lugh says. He cain’t leave Ma. Whaddya mean? I says. Ma’s dead. Lugh says, What I mean is . . . him an Ma made this place together an, in his mind, she’s still here. He cain’t leave her memory, that’s what I’m sayin. But we’re the ones still alive, I says. You an me. An Emmi, he says. I know that. But you see how he is. It’s like we don’t exist. He don’t give two hoots fer us. Lugh thinks fer a moment. Then he says, Love makes you weak. Carin fer somebody that much means you cain’t think straight. Look at Pa. Who’d wanna end up like him? I ain’t never gonna love nobody. It’s better that way. I don’t say naught. Jest trace circles in the dirt with my finger. My gut twists. Like a mean hand reached right inside me an grabbed it. Then I says, What about me? Yer my sister, he says. It ain’t the same. But what if I died? You’d miss me, wouldn’t you? Huh, he says. Fat chance of you dyin an leavin me in peace. Always followin me everywhere, drivin me nuts. Since the day we was born. It ain’t my fault yer the tallest thing around, I says. You make a good sunshade. Hey! He pushes me onto my back. I push him with my foot. Hey yerself ! I prop myself up on my elbows. Well, I says, would you? What? Miss me. Don’t be stupid, he says. I kneel in front of him. He looks at me. Lugh’s got eyes as blue as the summer sky. Blue as the clearest water. Ma used to say his eyes was so blue, it made her want to sail away on ’em. I’d miss you, I says. If you died, I’d miss you so much I’d wanna kill myself. Don’t talk foolish, Saba. Promise me you won’t, I says. Won’t what? Die. Everybody’s gotta die one day, he says. I reach out an touch his birthmoon tattoo. High on his right cheekbone, jest like mine, it shows how the moon looked in the sky the night we was born. It was a full moon that midwinter. That’s a rare thing. But twins born unner a full moon at the turnin of the year, that’s even rarer. Pa did the tattoos hisself, to mark us out as special. We was eighteen year our last birthday. That must be four month ago, near enough. When we die, I says, d’you think we’ll end up stars together, side by side? You gotta stop thinkin like that, he says. I told you, that’s jest Pa’s nonsense. Go on then, if you know so much, tell me what happens when you die. I dunno. He sighs an flops back on the ground, squintin at the sky. You jest . . . stop. Yer heart don’t beat no more, you don’t breathe an then yer jest . . . gone. An that’s it, I says. Yeah. Well that’s stupid, I says. I mean, we spend our lives doin all this . . . sleepin an eatin an fixin roofs an then it all jest . . . ends. Hardly seems worth the trouble. Well, that’s the way it is, he says. You . . . hey Lugh, you wouldn’t ever leave without me, would you? Of course not, he says. But even if I did, you’d only follow me. I will follow you . . . everywhere you go! When I say it, I make crazy eyes an a crazy face because it creeps him out when I do that. To the bottom of the lake, I says, . . . to the ends of the earth . . . to the moon . . . to the stars. . . ! Shut up! He leaps to his feet. Bet you don’t follow me to skip rocks, he says an runs off. Hey! I yell. Wait fer me!From the Hardcover edition.

Editorial Reviews

 “It’s Mad Max and The Hunger Games meets True Grit. . . .The author moves between ruthless action and gorgeous, buttery narration. . . . In the hands of a lesser writer, that style might have dragged, but first-time author Young is talented, and she’s just getting started. . . This is a must-read, where girls rescue boys, and where the future looms up full of hope and loss, struggles and archetypes that give the story a timeless, classic edge.” –The Globe and Mail“Eerie and adventurous. . .on par with Suzanne Collins’ The Hunger Games and Paolo Bacigalupi’s Ship Breaker. . . Blood Red Road has a cinematic quality that makes it white-hot. . . .The fervor is more than warranted.”–LA Times“Brutal and thrilling.” —The Wall Street Journal“Not only will it satisfy the cravings of Hunger Games fans, but it is—dare I say—better than The Hunger Games. . . . This book will blow you away. . . . Blood Red Road simply delivers. The story, the writing, the characters and the narrative voice are stunning and completely original, setting this book apart from the crowd of dystopian novels.” —Hollywood Crush,  “[Blood Red Road is] poised to be the next big thing in teen fiction, and with good reason. . . . The world . . . is beautifully wrought, as well as terrifyingly plausible. . . . Young has taken familiar pieces of everything from Gladiator to Lord of the Rings and put them in the hands of a spunky, moody heroine who breaths new life into old motifs.” —Quill & Quire“[Blood Red Road] mashes together McCarthy’s intensity with a laconic narrative style taken from the literature of the American west. . . . Yes, this is the perfect apocalypse for pre-teens.” —The Guardian (UK)“Young adults will enjoy reading this story of the transformation that is possible when you fight for what you believe in and know in your heart that it is right.” —National Post“Blood Red Road is an epic adventure set in a violent future world and nothing is as it seems. Young manages to breathe life into her characters with little insights that warm the heart.” —The Sun Daily