Marie Lu wrote the dystopian and young adult novel, Prodigy, not long after her first book, Legend, was a success. Prodigy was published on January 29, 2013, and is the second book of the "Legend" trilogy. It was preceded by Legend and followed by Champion.
Marie Lu has stated that she enjoys writing young adult novels and has a special love for dystopian books, which is one reason as to why she began the "Legend" series. Before writing her first book, Lu worked as an art designer for the video game industry and is now an art director at Online Alchemy, a video game company. What inspired her to write Legend was one evening when watching Les Miserables, Lu began to wonder how a relationship between a famous criminal versus an intelligent detective would turn out.
Prodigy received warm praises by many critics. Sara Scribner from The Los Angeles Times wrote, “Marie Lu has beaten the curse with Prodigy, the second book in the "Legend" Series… Unlike The Hunger Games, which delivers its adrenaline rush by giving kids bows and arrows, this series’ power is derived through its layered atmospheres and the way its characters reflect and fight their worlds – and one another. With Prodigy, Lu proves that a Book Two needn’t play second fiddle, providing intrigue and deep pleasure all its own.” Prodigy was an instant success, simply because its preceding book, Legend, attained high praise and support for its following book.