Set in some undetermined future version the United States, the land west of the Rockies has formed its own country – the Republic. To the east is the Colonies.
As things go in dystopian societies, there is a major divide between the economic classes. June was been raised by a wealthy family and is a military prodigy. Day comes from a poor sector and, at 15 years old, has become one of Republic’s most wanted criminals (and he is, in a Robin Hood sort of way).
After a raid on a hospital for medical supplies, Day is accused of killing a soldier he thought he had only injured. That soldier is June’s beloved older brother. June makes it her mission to track down Day, but in the process learns that the Republic is willing to do just about anything to keep secrets from its people.
Marie Lu has created a fairly plausible future (though, I think we’re more likely to split North/South, rather than East/West. Also, are Biggie and 2Pac represented on the respective flags? Just wondering…). June and Day match well intellectually but they still make mistakes like any 15 year old. Aside from smarts, loyalty is a major defining element of each character – June to the memory of her brother and (at first) her country; Day to Tess – his Little John – and his remaining family (only his older brother has a notion of what he’s up to). Lu keeps things moving at a good clip, while introducing elements that should carry through the series. I’m all in on this one.