Review: The Walled City by Ryan Graudin

Title: The Walled City
Author: Ryan Graudin
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: November 4th 2014
Part of A Series?: No, Standalone
I Got A Copy Through: ARC via Guardian Children's Books
Blurb Description: 730. That's how many days I've been trapped. 18. That's how many days I have left to find a way out.
DAI, trying to escape a haunting past, traffics drugs for the most ruthless kingpin in the Walled City. But in order to find the key to his freedom, he needs help from someone with the power to be invisible....
JIN hides under the radar, afraid the wild street gangs will discover her biggest secret: Jin passes as a boy to stay safe. Still, every chance she gets, she searches for her lost sister....
MEI YEE has been trapped in a brothel for the past two years, dreaming of getting out while watching the girls who try fail one by one. She's about to give up, when one day she sees an unexpected face at her window.....

In this innovative and adrenaline-fueled novel, they all come together in a desperate attempt to escape a lawless labyrinth before the clock runs out.


"There are three rules of survival in the Walled City: Run fast. Trust no one. Always carry your knife.
Right now, my life depends completely on the first. Run, run, run."
Sunless, lawless, ruled by gangs that deal in two things- drugs and prostitutes. The Walled City is a nightmare. Hell, even. It is death personified with hope being crushed out. And yet, there are always those that break the rules…
Dai. Running away from a crime he didn't actually commit and into the Walled City from his huge mansion, he has only one chance at redemption. A chance that will very likely cost him his life.
Jin Ling. Run, run, run. It's all she does. In the quest to find her sister who was taken by the reapers to be a brothel girl, she finds herself breaking all her rules. Trust, friendship, and worst of all, the dream of thinking about what the future holds for her.
Mei Yee. Staring out of her window that gives her only an ounce of the freedom she wants deep inside, all she is told is that this is her life. There is no way out. And yet, there is a mysterious boy who stands outside her window, promising her a life filled with seashells and happiness…
While it took me a while to actually get hooked onto the Walled City, the book itself was genius! Ryan Graudin's writing was BRILLIANT; her words are so soulful, her each line tinted with mystery, hope and desperation all together that I couldn't help but fall in love!
"Instead of dreaming about dancing in zero gravity, making footprints in moon dust – he's six feet under. Shattered beyond repair; broken just like everything else I leave behind."
I would most definitely recommend The Walled City – to anyone who wants to feel hope – really feel it – in a place where it is crushed out. 5 glowing stars!

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