The Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

Posted on 09/21/2015 in Book Review / 2 Comments

The Red Queen by Victoria AveyardRed Queen (Red Queen, #1) by Victoria Aveyard
Published by Orion on February 10th 2015
Genres: Dystopian, Paranormal Fiction, Romance, Young Adult
Pages: 383
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
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four-stars

The poverty stricken Reds are commoners, living under the rule of the Silvers, elite warriors with god-like powers.\r\nTo Mare Barrow, a 17-year-old Red girl from The Stilts, it looks like nothing will ever change.\r\nMare finds herself working in the Silver Palace, at the centre ofthose 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.\r\nBut power is a dangerous game. And in this world divided by blood, who will win?\r\n

Sometimes endings make or break a book. In this case, the ending to The Red Queen saved it, at least in my opinion.\n\nI’ve seen this book circling the blogisphere for awhile now, and I had largely ignored it, despite many recommendations to read it stat! It wasn’t that I didn’t have an interest, but sometimes books are hyped too much for me to really believe they are that awesome.\n

What I didn’t like in the Red Queen

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Sometimes I got bored.

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The Red Queen was a little slow for me in many of its sections.  I wouldn’t say I was necessarily bored reading it, but the pace lagged a little, especially in the parts where Mare is at the castle near the Stilts and circumnavigating her new life.  I understand what Aveyard was trying to do; it was clearly character-building to set up the latter part of the novel.  But I think that can be accomplished without the plot-dragging.

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Nothing surprised me.

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I was surprised by nothing, really.  Not even the ending, despite that I did enjoy the ending.  I was always suspicious of certain characters and when my suspicions panned out, it was a kind of a let-down to have been right the whole time.  I don’t like when an author leads the reader around by the nose and throws obvious hints as to what is going to happen.  For me, that doesn’t build anticipation, it just makes me impatient and ready to get on with things, since I’m sure I already know what is going to happen.  I like when authors surprise me!

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But that’s not to say that I didn’t like The Red Queen, because I do give it 4 stars.

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Now…what I liked about The Red Queen

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Mare was an awesome protagonist.

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I really loved Mare as a character.  She comes from this broken part of her society, where there is no value placed on life unless you are wealthy or have an ability.  It very much reminds me of Katniss from the Hunger Games, though I am loathe to compare anything to that franchise, because it isn’t fair to either.  However, their life experiences are very much the same:  poor family, desolate living conditions, unfair disadvantages.  Mare was a character with many flaws, but I thought those flaws made her the perfect heroine to this story.

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So was Cal.

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Cal, aka heir to the throne, was multi-faceted.  He was extremely loyal to whatever causes he believed in, as well as to his family and his world.  He was not a character who was easily blinded, but more so, I felt that he so badly wanted to see the good in his father’s ideas and personality, that he was willing to ignore all the bad things that were happening right in front of him.

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World-building was easy to get into.

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The world-building was done pretty well.  Aveyard describes the Stilts as brown and dirty and old, and the people in it as defeated and unable to fight.  I felt a sense of acceptance from most of the Reds in this story that this was their life and it would never be better.  Likewise, she describes the Silver cities as opulent and shiny…and ruthless.  Much like the Capitol in Panem. There I go making another Hunger Games comparison!

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That ending tho!

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The ending was spectacular.  Where the rest of the story dragged along a little bit, the ending was fast-paced, bloody and violent.  Exactly the kind of ending I want to see in a novel like this. And while I wasn’t surprised by who’s and the how’s, I was surprised by a few other things that I can’t really talk about without spoiling the story for those who haven’t read it yet.

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Recommend?  Yes!

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Overall, a solid damn read, and I plan to get on the Glass Sword as soon as it’s available to me.

four-stars
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Jennifer became addicted to books when she randomly picked up a Sweet Valley High book in grade school. She never looked back. After blowing through the SVH and SVU series faster than her parents could put them in her hands, she began perusing her stepfather's bookshelves and reading fantasy like Piers Anthony's Incarnations of Immortality series, which she still maintains is some of the best fantasy ever. She collects books like the Duggar family collects kids and began waiting for her Hogwarts letter at the tender age of 33.

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2 responses to “The Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

    • I will still read the next one…the world is interesting and I’m definitely wanting to know where it goes. Maybe it was just too hyped for me to get in to like everyone else…I dunno.\r\nI really want to know why she is the way she is!

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