Character-Driven Dystopian || Review: The Last Voyage of Poe Blythe

It’s been a hot minute since I’ve read anything by Ally Condie, (I finished the Matched series when I was in middle school, which is crazy to think about). This book seemed to come out of nowhere, but it really intrigued me. After finishing this book, I’m probably going to read everything Ally writes from here on out.

Title: The Last Voyage of Poe Blythe
Author: Ally Condie
Publisher: Dutton Books
Genres: YA Dystopian

Official Synopsis

Poe Blythe is the young captain of her failing city’s last mining ship, travelling the Serpentine River and dredging up gold.

But it isn’t gold on her mind. Two years ago, river raiders robbed Poe of everything. And she wants revenge.

As she navigates the treacherous waters and realizes there’s a traitor among her crew, Poe is forced to confront the dangerous truth about why she has been sent on this journey – and reckon with who she has become.

Quick Thoughts

  • I had no real sense of the setting from the premise, but it turns out that this is a dystopian, which surprised me…but I don’t know why? It makes total sense, since she’s written dystopian in the past.
  • Speaking of setting, I loved it. Set in the (assumed) United States after something horrible went down, most of the story is on a ship—a really strange, gold-digging ship. It was interesting, and not something I’d experienced before.
  • Ally’s writing is drop-dead gorgeous. I felt like I was soaking up her words and prose. It was intense yet beautiful.
  • This book is fast-paced with short chapters and lots of twists and mysteries. I did not see any of the plot twists coming, and I loved how it ended. This is a book I’ll easily reread in a couple of years.

Lasting Impressions

Let’s talk about Poe Blythe. In the first couple of chapters, I wasn’t sure if I’d enjoy being in her head, but as I read on, I completely fell into her point of view. Poe is logical, crafty, and level-headed. She thinks everything through, yet she experiences her emotions in such a exquisite way. My love for her quickly grew fierce, and I was excited to see her grow. Her journey is so heart wrenching, but I enjoyed every moment.

I also really liked seeing how fleshed-out the other characters in this story were. They all had some purpose outside of Poe’s, and they each had a story to tell. I really appreciated this.

Overall Feelings

Rating: 5 out of 5.

I adored this quiet story. It was such a surprise—and I’ve heard almost no one talk about it. I would definitely recommend this to anyone who enjoys character-driven stories. It was fantastic.

4 thoughts on “Character-Driven Dystopian || Review: The Last Voyage of Poe Blythe

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