“YA X-Men with rebellion and revolution”
How is that for a tagline? I’m trying to do one for each book I review that encapsulates what I felt about the book, let me know what you think.
I listened to this on Audible so this will also have some comments on the audiobook. As always I’ll keep this review spoiler free.
Red Queen (Red Queen, #1) by Victoria Aveyard
Series: Red Queen #1
Published by HarperTeen on February 10th 2015
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy
Buy on Book Depository
This is a world divided by blood - red or silver.The Reds are commoners, ruled by a Silver elite in possession of god-like superpowers. And to Mare Barrow, a seventeen-year-old Red girl from the poverty-stricken Stilts, it seems like nothing will ever change.That is, until she finds herself working in the Silver Palace. Here, surrounded by the people she hates the most, Mare discovers that, despite her red blood, she possesses a deadly power of her own. One that threatens to destroy the balance of power.Fearful of Mare's potential, the Silvers hide her in plain view, declaring her a long-lost Silver princess, now engaged to a Silver prince. Despite knowing that one misstep would mean her death, Mare works silently to help the Red Guard, a militant resistance group, and bring down the Silver regime.But this is a world of betrayal and lies, and Mare has entered a dangerous dance - Reds against Silvers, prince against prince, and Mare against her own heart
I really enjoyed Red Queen, it felt like a rag to riches tale with a heck of a difference. I loved the amalgamation of magic/superpowers in a world that seemed like it could have been the future to our world. They had technology, some of it was far more advanced than what we have, some of it left to the way side and fell to disuse. Red Queen also had Royalty, which I always love in a story, however the division between the reds and the silvers hit all too close to home with the climate these days.
It was relatively fast paced, and the setting changed enough to keep us on our toes. We first see the stilts, a run down little town where the reds live in squalor, then the palace. Oh boy what a difference! It surprised me to realise there were security cameras as I hadn’t clocked on to there being technology in this world. We also got to see some other places which I wished we’d spent more (any) time in, I have fingers crossed that future novels may venture into the techie sectors (I can’t remember what they’re called hah).
The narrator for Red Queen is Amanda Dolan, and she rocked it! I’ve been known to DNF a book if the narrator is not up to scratch, it’s so important to have a good narrator. Amanda has the perfect voice for Mare, she sounds young enough and has the right inflection. She also manages to differentiate all the characters with quirks of their voices and accents, which was so great I always knew who was talking by just her voice. Other narrators tend to go deeper for male or higher for female and leave it at that. Loved Amanda!
Okay so it’s really hard to talk about the characters and their developments without going into too much detail and spoiling things, so I’ll do my best to get my thoughts across spoiler free!
In general, each character, even the relatively minor ones, were pretty well developed and you witnessed this happening throughout, which I love to see.
As our protagonist, Mare understandably developed a lot. She had a lot of things happen to her, and she adjusted and moved on, becoming stronger for it. She was given some training, which is then referenced a lot in this book (and the next).
I really enjoyed Cal. He stayed true to his nature throughout, and kept his beliefs even when he faced adversity. I want to say more but can’t for spoilers but you’ll see.
Maven, the younger princeling, always in Cal’s shadow. He’s sweet and caring and driven, and has a few things up his sleeves.
Ahh the Queen. What a b****. That’s all I have to say about her I think!
I hope you enjoyed this review, have you read Red Queen? Let me know what you thought!