Stories of a grim future weren’t a new concept when Cormac McCarthy won the 2007 Pulitzer for The Road. The slant of a future not shiny with hope, but spoiled and shattered into a bleak landscape of struggle and survival are time-worn concepts within literature. Does the abundance of dystopian literature published and read today reflect a grave outlook for the world community? Or is it just another literary trend that will peak and slide back into a sub-category of science fiction? We’ll ask these questions and others this week in #litchat.
Marie Lu, Friday’s #litchat guest host, is something of a phenomena. Born in Shanghai, raised in Texas, and educated at USC, 27-year-old Lu has already achieved what many writers struggle for years to achieve. Her debut novel, Legend is the first in a trilogy of dystopian YA novels. Film rights to Legend have been sold and screenwriters are already at work adapting the first novel into a screenplay.
Legend is the story of two opposing characters, June and Day, thrown together in what was once the western United States and now home to the Republic, a nation perpetually at war with its neighbors. Born into an elite family in one of the Republic’s wealthiest districts, fifteen-year-old June is a prodigy being groomed for success in the Republic’s highest military circles. Born into the slums, fifteen-year-old Day is the country’s most wanted criminal. But his motives may not be as malicious as they seem. From very different worlds, June and Day have no reason to cross paths – until the day June’s brother, Metias, is murdered and Day becomes the prime suspect. Caught in the ultimate game of cat and mouse, Day is in a race for his family’s survival, while June seeks to avenge Metias’s death. But in a shocking turn of events, the two uncover the truth of what has really brought them together, and the sinister lengths their country will go to keep its secrets.
Before she started writing full time, Lu was the art director at a video game company. She also owns the business and brand Fuzz Academy, which was chosen by C21Media as one of the International Licensing Expo 2010’s brands with the most potential for a TV series. After graduating from USC in ’06, the California weather sweet-talked her into sticking around. She currently lives in Pasadena with her boyfriend, two Pembroke Welsh Corgis, and a chihuahua mix.
View the video trailer for Legend.
Follow Marie Lu on Twitter: @MarieLu.