Renegades by Marissa Meyer
Secret Identities. Extraordinary Powers. She wants vengeance. He wants justice.
The Renegades are a syndicate of prodigies—humans with extraordinary abilities—who emerged from the ruins of a crumbled society and established peace and order where chaos reigned. As champions of justice, they remain a symbol of hope and courage to everyone…except the villains they once overthrew.
Nova has a reason to hate the Renegades, and she is on a mission for vengeance. As she gets closer to her target, she meets Adrian, a Renegade boy who believes in justice—and in Nova. But Nova’s allegiance is to a villain who has the power to end them both.
Thank you to Netgalley for allowing me to read a copy of this book in return for an honest review.
Wow. Where to start with Renegades? This was one title I was really excited to get a copy of, since I loved the Lunar Chronicles so much. I was curious to see what Meyer would do with the plot and the world-building, but I didn’t know too much about the premise before I started reading. The world is a sort of Gotham-esque city where a council of superheroes called Renegades police the streets, carrying out justice according to the laws they have created. Nova, the main character, is the niece of the ‘villainous’ Ace Anarchist, the leader of the Anarchists who wanted to take down the council. Before the council, the streets were rife with villain gangs and crime, but some people [including Ace and his gang of super-‘villains’ want to create a world free of both the council and the gangs. Unfortunately, his demise has led to the council becoming even more powerful, and Nova plotting to take them all down in revenge.
It’s a really quick plot, and I love how the world is set up. The super-powers the prodigies, Renegades and Anarchists have are all so creative, and there are a bunch that would never have crossed my mind. It’s so refreshing to see ones which aren’t just rip-offs of Iron Man or Wonder Woman or Thor, but they’re all so brilliantly thought up. The characters and the plot were also strokes of genius, although if I do have a single gripe about this book it was that there were some moments where it didn’t feel quite believable. [Spoiler:] Nova’s Anarchist name is Nightmare, but once her identity is in danger she tries to fabricate a new one for herself, and there are a bunch of things which really should have been flagged up as suspicious coincidences between Nova and Nightmare but were never actually explored. I’m sure they will at some point, but there were lots of near misses that just seemed a little too heavy-handed or brushed under the carpet.
Even so, I couldn’t recommend this enough. The characters are great, and the world-building is brilliant, and I really can’t wait for book two to come out.