In RED QUEEN, Mare gets mistaken for a silver-blooded princess and is able to escape her fate as a red-blooded peasant to be forced to fight in a deadly war.
What intrigued me: Recommendation by a friend.
Wait, I've seen this before
RED QUEEN is the epitome of late to the party. It's a weird mix between futuristic dystopia and your average high fantasy class revolution.
During the height of the 2011 dystopia hype, this maybe would've been original, this maybe would've been able to keep my interest, but having read dozens of dystopian books that follow the exact same scheme, this isn't anything special. If you haven't read lots of books in the genre, this might strike you as quite interesting, I just found it dull and repetitive.
Especially the beginning is so reminiscent of THE WINNER'S CURSE that I thought I had picked up the wrong book for a moment.
The social divide between two people, one overpowering the other because of their almost supernatural skill, is so annoyingly overdone that I couldn't take this seriously. The red-blooded and silver-blooded people, peasants and nobles respectively, didn't even seem interesting to me. I find the premise pretty silly to be honest, the only thing that's missing to make this novel read like a bad fan fiction is that the silvers all have unusual eye and hair colors. The weirdest thing is that the set up suggests we have a straight up class war situation, but then the book does a 360 and turns into THE SELECTION, revolution style.
Let's play cliche bingo
Although there is lots of world building, it only made me shrug. Aveyard is unable to mix the futuristic influences into her medieval-ish fantasy world without making it seem lazy and strange. RED QUEEN consists of all cliches you've seen in dystopian and high fantasy books, smashed together and pretending it's something new. And adding a dreaded love triangle between the childhood friend and the forbidden lover, AND another guy (!) just made me sigh endlessly.
Paired with a special snowflake protagonist that inexplicably has ~magical powers~, RED QUEEN comes more across as a parody on the genre than a novel that's to be taken seriously.
Without an ounce of originality, RED QUEEN reads like a half-baked cross between your average fantasy novel and the x men, in the worst way.
Overall: Do I Recommend?No. I found it boring and full of cliches. RED QUEEN stuns with consisting of so many tropes that I'm surprised nobody has created a bingo sheet based on this.
Published: February 10th 2015
Genre: YA / High Fantasy
"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."(Source: Goodreads)