There has been so much hype surrounding Red Queen that, at first, I didn’t know whether I should read it or not. I’ll admit it, I let myself be tempted, and here I am, reviewing this really, really good book. Action-packed, with lots of suspense and plot twists, Red Queen is one of those books you can’t put down.
“I’m an accident. I’m a lie. And my life depends on maintaining the illusion.”
Society is divided in two, based on the color of blood. Red, or silver, one color makes a whole different life. While red bloods are poor, working hard, silvers are the elite. As if that’s not enough, they also have powers. From controling water to people’s mind, they can, and they do rule this world. After Mare Barrow, a 17-years-old Red girl, encounters a stranger, she finds herself working at the Silver Palace, at the heart of the royalty of this world…and ends up discovering that, her, too, has some kind of impressive, deadly power. To the Silver, Mare is a sheep in a wolf’s cage… Reading this synopsis, I wasn’t at first convinced : usually, I’m not that much into magical powers kind of stories. Red Queen made me curious, though. Among the first chapters, I had a hard time getting inside of this world, always having the weird, and unpleasant feeling of deja-vu. The Selection, The Hunger Games, and a little bit of Divergent, to quote a few, came to mind while reading passages here and there, special scenes and moments. Sadly, I can’t say I found this world very unique, mainly because of this. However, I will admit that everything was well-thought, and built. Red Queen puts together fantasy, and a dystopian world, and lots of suspense, and it’s done well, very well.
“You better hide that heart of yours, Lady Titanos. It won’t lead you anywhere you want to go.”
Mare Barrow is a strong character, as required in this kind of book. She’s the one. She’s struggling everyday for her life and the sake of her family, she’s a thief, she becomes a great liar, she’s obstinated, has her own opinions and stands for them. Mare is a great main character, despite the similarities to all MC in those kind of books, such as Katniss Everdeen. She’s fierce, she’s one you want to follow, root for, she’s the one you want to be special, the one who will be there to change the world. I didn’t find her very original, but I did find her endearing. One of the strong point of this story, relies in the relationships she has with the other characters in this book. I wil say it right away, there is a love triangle, well, sort of. I know, usually this is the kind of thing that’s bothering, but, there, I didn’t find it as strong. Mainly because none of it seemed like insta love. Mare’s relationship with Cal was perfectly paced, as they get to know each other, find out their flaws, what they hate about each other, and find themselves towards the same path. Mare’s relationship with Maven was pretty good, too, as it was at first wary, and started towards friendship, before completely, well, changing, not to spoil anything. The relationships between the characters were well-built, and not rushed, I enjoyed this part.
I will just take a few moments to talk about the other characters in this book. All of them had their own background stories, their struggles, and characters such as Cal and Maven were, damn, well, really, really good characters, with so many levels that it’s impressive, and so interesting to read about. This, and well, the whole story, are what I loved the most about Red Queen. From beginning to end, you find yourself on the edge of your seat, wondering what will happen next, what could possibly happen. With those characters, you’re left doubting everything and everyone, every word and every moment.
Anyone can betray anyone. Such a great tagline, for an action-packed story with an ending plot twist I am still not over. An intense read, and a great debut from Victoria Aveyard, skilled writer who surely knows how to makes her readers wait anxiously for what’s coming next in this series.
Did you read Red Queen ? Share your thoughts on this book with me!
Victoria Aveyard, Red Queen, Published by Orion, February 10th 2015.
The poverty stricken Reds are commoners, living under the rule of the Silvers, elite warriors with god-like powers.
To Mare Barrow, a 17-year-old Red girl from The Stilts, it looks like nothing will ever change.
Mare finds herself working in the Silver Palace, at the centre of
those she hates the most. She quickly discovers that, despite her red blood, she possesses a deadly power of her own. One that threatens to destroy Silver control.
But power is a dangerous game. And in this world divided by blood, who will win?