You Read What? Book Reviews: Blood Red Road

Author: Moira Young

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

  • Imprint: Margaret K. McElderry Books

Date Published: June 7th 2011

Format: Paper Back

Source: Toronto Public Library


Saba has spent her whole life in Silverlake, a dried-up wasteland ravaged by constant sandstorms. The Wrecker civilization has long been destroyed, leaving only landfills for Saba and her family to scavenge from. That’s fine by her, as long as her beloved twin brother Lugh is around. But when a monster sandstorm arrives, along with four cloaked horsemen, Saba’s world is shattered. Lugh is captured, and Saba embarks on an epic quest to get him back.

Suddenly thrown into the lawless, ugly reality of the world outside of desolate Silverlake, Saba is lost without Lugh to guide her. So perhaps the most surprising thing of all is what Saba learns about herself: she’s a fierce fighter, an unbeatable survivor, and a cunning opponent. And she has the power to take down a corrupt society from the inside. Teamed up with a handsome daredevil named Jack and a gang of girl revolutionaries called the Free Hawks, Saba stages a showdown that will change the course of her own civilization.

Blood Red Road has a searing pace, a poetically minimal writing style, violent action, and an epic love story. Moira Young is one of the most promising and startling new voices in teen fiction.

Number of Days It Took to Read: 5



I really like this cover. The picture here doesn’t do it justice since there’s a shine to it that really brings out the depths of the reds. I prefer this cover (the paperback version) over the others.

The Writing Score: 5 out of 5

Recommendation: A Must Read

Memorable or Forgettable: Memorable

Rating: 5 out of 5


I don’t give out a lot of perfect scores in ratings but even less so in the writing department. The writing is a character of it’s own. Saba, our heroine, is illiterate and therefore the writing reflects that with words and grammar that aren’t properly formed or spelled out correctly. I’ve heard people mention how difficult a read this is (going as far as putting it down) due to the “dialect” but honestly, you just need the first couple of pages to find the rhythm of the prose. I did it in a page and a half. Books are meant to challenge you and not just with ideas but with the words themselves. It’s like asking a ballerina to dance hip hop. They need to get loose with (or lose entirely) their form and adapt to the new one.

The story is a dystopia but what sets it apart from most is that it doesn’t tell you EXPLICITLY that it is! Readers aren’t sure of where the setting takes place in terms of our current geography and they don’t know when it takes place until further in the book but clues are given discretely so they can figure it out for themselves.

I adore Saba. She’s the heroine I’ve been waiting for. I’ve seen plenty of female protagonists that are strong emotionally and intellectually and that’s great. Saba is both of these things but I haven’t seen many kick ass physically in the way that Saba does and she does it dirty…and I loved it. She’s someone who’s not easy to like and who grows on you. I feel like I’ve actually developed a literary friendship with her and it was one earned and not one based on sympathy of her situation or even because she’s one those “instantly likable” people.

I’m in love with Jack. Seriously, I want to marry him. Jack and Saba have this chemistry that just clicks and it feels natural. I also have the hots for DeMalo even though he’s barely in it…and could quite possibly be very, very bad…

Overall, the characters were well written, the plot was well executed, the pacing was perfect and the writing gave my brain a work out. The only criticism I have is that Young has set herself up for high expectations for her next book in the series that’s currently out, Rebel Heart.


I’d like to thank Siobhan from Conversations Of A Reading Addict for telling me about this book and pushing me to it. Verbal pushing at least 😉

A. A. Omer

The opinions expressed here are mine and readers are welcome to disagree. In fact, I encourage it! I never believed in putting particular books or authors on some sort of universal pedestal but you’re free to put it on your individualized pedestal because I most certainly will.

2 thoughts on “You Read What? Book Reviews: Blood Red Road

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