Book Cover
Rate this book

Ratings & Reviews for

Red Queen

5 stars
367,455 (39%)
4 stars
318,737 (33%)
3 stars
174,926 (18%)
2 stars
54,750 (5%)
1 star
24,023 (2%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 64,767 reviews
Profile Image for Jessica ❁ ➳ Silverbow ➳ ❁ .
1,261 reviews8,753 followers
March 22, 2018
Reviewed by: Rabid Reads

This book didn't start out terribly.

I mean, come on . . . royals with superpowers? And a heroine from amongst the downtrodden servant class? Okay, yes, that does sound kind of familiar, especially considering that said downtrodden heroine is a Red, but beyond that I didn't feel like there were many similarities. And as much as I love Red Rising and Golden Son , I would jump all over it if I thought this book was a copycat.

BUT. Sold as I was (at first), the heavy-handed descriptions and comparisons, piled on top of unnecessary flourishes, piled on top of still more comparisons . . . *sighs*

For example:

The only thing that serves to distinguish [Reds], outwardly at least, is that Silvers stand tall. Our backs are bent by work and unanswered hope and the inevitable disappointment with our lot in life.

"Backs bent by work" was sufficient to get the point across. "Unanswered hope" lent poignancy. BUT "the inevitable disappointment" blah, blah, turned a statement that could have been a powerful illustration into overkill.

Was this an isolated incident? *snorts*

Hey, lady! This concept:


It's a good one. FYI.

And that wasn't the only problem:

1. I hadn't given much thought to why I typically crave bloodthirstiness from my heroines. Previously, when it was an issue, it was in regards to only two types of characters: those who stepped up, and those who didn't.

Turns out there's a third type.

She who makes the hard decision:

"Are you with us, Mare Barrow?" he says, his hand closing over mine. More war, more death, Cal said. But there's a chance he's wrong. There's a chance we change it.
My fingers tighten, holding on to Will. I can feel the weight of my action, the importance behind it.
"I'm with you."
"We will rise," he breathes, in unison with Tristan. I remember the words and speak with them. "Red as the dawn."
In the flickering candlelight, our shadows look like monsters on the walls.

Dithers over that decision:

"Children." The words rip out of me. "He's a father."

(Damn right, he is. And a husband, and a son, and a grandson, and maybe an uncle and a nephew, too. THEY ALL ARE, you daft cow.)

Then sticks her head in the sand like a fraking ostrich after the decision is carried out:

All together, twelve died last night, but I refuse to learn their names. I can't have them weighing on me . . .

I've said before that if you're going to be an assassin, you need to own it.

I'm adapting that statement: if you're going to kill someone for the "greater good," you need to be decisive about it. And if you're having legitimately conflicted thoughts, then maybe you shouldn't be killing anyone. But regardless, YOU TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR YOUR ACTIONS.

You don't go all Scarlett O'Hara and say, "I'll think about that tomorrow." *flutters hands delicately*

You know why? B/c Scarlett O'Hara would make a damn terrible assassin, that's why.

And Mare Barrow makes an equally terrible freedom fighter. She's this BAFFLING combination of ruthlessness, pragmatism, compassion, self-entitlement, and poor self-esteem that causes her to constantly second guess herself.

Beyond that . . . I'm not sure how down I am with the cause.

It's one thing to kill in the heat of battle or to premeditatedly take out a Bad Guy, but to play god, picking and choosing who will die b/c their death will create more chaos than that-person-over-there . . .?

*frowns and squints*

The whole scenario sat poorly with me. But my reasons for being uncomfortable were totally different than Mare's, so instead of bonding with her, I wanted to smack her.


Sometimes MCs make mistakes. They're supposed to learn from those mistakes--that's what humanizes them, that's what spurs character growth--but Mare never takes a hard look at herself. She stays almost completely two-dimensional, and I say almost, b/c she's too selfish to be truly flat.

2. Then there's (if you haven't started noticing it already) the melodrama:

My hands wipe at my eyes, though my tears are long lost in the rain, leaving behind only an embarrassingly runny nose and some black makeup. Thankfully, my silver powder holds. It's made of stronger stuff than I am.

Crying . . . in the rain. Then comparing herself . . . to MAKEUP . . . and coming up short . . . Really?

But this one's my favorite:

"I wish things were different," he whispers, but I can still hear him.
The words take me back to my home and my father when he said the same thing so long ago . . .

So long ago?


. . . To think that Cal and my father, a broken Red man, can share the same thoughts makes me pause.

Hmm . . . you like tacos, too? That's CRAZY. Me, I friggin' love tacos. It is a small world.

3. I don't hate all love triangles . . .

When they don't get ridiculous, sometimes I even like the tension they create.


There is something inherently sordid about messing around with brothers. It's tacky. Don't do it. *flares nostrils*

And I'm going to have to stop, b/c I'm nearing my (self-imposed) word limit. But know that as well as being melodramatic and a coward, Mare Barrow is also self-centered, irrational, AND inconsistent. If you really want to hear me rant some more, I'll spoiler tag it in my Goodreads review. Beyond that, the book was 100% predictable, and the methods employed to overthrow the corrupt government were every bit as reprehensible as the government itself. Not recommended.

Jessica Signature

SPOILERY rant time! Starting where I left off:


I don't know, I DON'T KNOW.
Profile Image for Rachel E. Carter.
Author 9 books3,511 followers
January 27, 2023
“Graceling meets Selection” Whatever marketing team came up with that tag for this series clearly never read the book. Red Queen is Game of Thrones with Katniss as the Mockingjay with X-Men in a tantalizing YA twist of magical perfection.


Three quotes that summarize this series spoiler-free:

”Anyone can betray anyone.” Meet the Lannisters Silver Court and their current royal family.

”Make no mistake, my girl. You are playing the game as someone’s pawn.”

”I am a fool.”

Sooooooooo… My initial reaction:


I have to wait another year??? Let me repeat: I HAVE TO WAIT ANOTHER YEAR???

…Yeaaaaa, I'm totally cool with that. Not.

Alright. Now to my actual thoughts on this book. I marked the whole thing as a spoiler because I am lazy but yea, trust me when I say you don’t want this ruined (so read on at your own peril):

Profile Image for Emily May.
1,992 reviews298k followers
July 10, 2015
I just... can't do it.

It was boring, light and silly, and I'm pretty sure I've already read the basic premise of this book in Pierce Brown's Red Rising.

I made it to 60% on my kindle and then skimmed for a bit, but I've been attempting to read this book for over a week now and the magic was evidently lost on me. When you're reading a book and you reach a point where you think "is it too soon to DNF this?", you know things must be bad. It's so sad, though, because everything about The Red Queen was just screaming "love me, Emily!" before I picked it up.

It's not because of the love triangle, either. I've said before that an author can easily sell me a well-executed love triangle - so nope, it wasn't that. Let me tell you a sad little truth about this book and I can take it straight from the blurb:

Graceling meets The Selection in debut novelist Victoria Aveyard's sweeping tale...

That's an odd mash-up to use in your marketing anyway. Like Gone Girl meets Twilight or something similar. But, whatever, there was a rather distinct lack of Graceling in that 60% I actually forced myself through. Maybe it comes later... but I no longer have any interest in sticking around to find out. There was way too much of The Selection's mean girl antics to make this book interesting.

The part of this book I read was sooooo slooooow. Painfully slow. We're introduced to a world that had potential but remained incredibly basic, bringing nothing particularly new to the table. There are two kinds of people in this world - Silvers and Reds. The former are the ruling class, have silver blood, and sometimes possess special abilities like mind control and elemental manipulation. The Reds are a slave class who are ruled over by the Silvers and live in poverty.

Mare is a Red who, in unexpected circumstances, discovers that she has powers of her own. In order to keep an eye on her and learn more about the powers she possesses, she is disguised as a Silver and trained within the Silver palace. All the other women in the novel instantly hate her (usually for no good reason) and all the men see sunshine radiating out of the pores of her skin (metaphor for "cue love triangle").

Ooookaayy. And this is the description for Red Rising:

Darrow is a Red, a miner in the interior of Mars. His mission is to extract enough precious elements to one day tame the surface of the planet and allow humans to live on it. The Reds are humanity's last hope.

Or so it appears, until the day Darrow discovers it's all a lie. That Mars has been habitable - and inhabited - for generations, by a class of people calling themselves the Golds. A class of people who look down on Darrow and his fellows as slave labour, to be exploited and worked to death without a second thought.

Until the day that Darrow, with the help of a mysterious group of rebels, disguises himself as a Gold and infiltrates their command school, intent on taking down his oppressors from the inside.

Of course, there's a revolution brewing in both books too. And both main characters pretend to be members of the other class. I mean... it's like the word "Gold" was just replaced with "Silver" and all the socialist angst was replaced with high school bitchy angst.

There was so little action in that first 60% that I literally had to force myself through pages and pages of Mare flirting with the Silver prince - Cal - and the prince's betrothed - Evangeline - hating Mare as soon as she set eyes on her. This book was a constant showdown between the innocent MC and the bitchy mean girl (and her gang of mean girls). Hell... you can even match the characters up to their high school cliques. And I'm sure Evangeline's meanness is going to be used as an excuse for Mare to run off with Cal and not lose any sleep over it. Maybe not... but probably.

The main problem for me was that the revolution and the bigger war going on between the Silvers and Reds wasn't given enough attention. I felt like the plot relied on the romantic aspect and the angst to propel it along. Neither of which I cared about.

Farley scoffs. "You want me to pin my entire operation, the entire revolution, on some teenaged love story? I can't believe this."
Across the table, a strange look crosses Kilorn's face. When Farley turns to him, looking for some kind of support, she finds none.
"I can," he whispers, his eyes never leaving my face.

Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Tumblr | Youtube
Profile Image for Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘.
851 reviews3,880 followers
February 15, 2021

Actual rating : 1.5 stars

So, this is the 2015 mind-blowing release?

① I'm just so fucking bored. UNDERWHELMED is the word.

② Mare is a selfish brat who can't shut up one second to look at something else than herself. She keeps acting without thinking and gets numerous people harmed/killed.

③ She's a special snowflake through and through, because she's special you know and nothing can be done without her.

④ She's in a constant need of saving and doesn't even acknowledge that fact.

⑤ There is a love-triangle (square?) but it's not what annoys me. The fact that I can't bring myself to FEEL SOMETHING for any of these (3) male-leads does annoy me, though. Now, as bland and hollow as they are, I still don't understand what they see exactly in Mare but who am I to judge?

"Why I care, I can't say". ME NEITHER, Mare, me neither.

⑥ She's not sarcastic but just plain rude and oh so WHINY.

⑦ She can't seem to find any redeeming quality in any other woman. Guess what? I'm not finding any redeeming quality in you either. GIRL HATE EVERYWHERE. Why, oh why do women always hate other women ON SIGHT in these books? Just TELL ME.

Evangeline : "From the way her fingers tighten, I can tell she wants nothing more than to wrap her hands around my throat." Because reasons

Random Silver girls : "Before I have a chance to take a breath, a pair of girls steps in front of me. Their smiles are fake and cold, just like their eyes." Because reasons

Her tutor : "I observed," she clips, already hating me." Because reasons

I'm not the kindest person of the world by any means, but I never hated someone ON SIGHT. For fuck sake. We will never see men doing that in books and that's what sickens and maddens me. It spreads the message that we women are sly and hateful. Oh but wait! This is by far the most widespread stereotype about women. Women authors, I'm not thanking you.

⑧ The similarities with Red Rising are just obnoxious. Say the girl who didn't like Red Rising, though. "And we will rise up. Red as the dawn." Yeah, right. Never seen this before.

⑨ I'm just so fucking bored, but I already said that, didn't I? B-bu-but nothing happens!

⑩ Perhaps it __________ be better if there aren't all these plot ____________. You know, when ____________ want us to believe in a rebellion without even ____________. People are starving but WHO CARES? There is a rebellion but WHO CARES? The Queen can read minds but OMG she can't guess anything? HOW FUCKING CONVENIENT.

⑪ The lack of world-building or of any descriptions, really, gave me the impression that the characters walked in a BLANK bubble.

That ending though.

Too bad I don't care about any of the characters. Waste of my time.

Oh and you people! Please stop SMIRKING! (my Kindle found 38, and my favorite is : "she manages to smirk without moving her lips" The Fuck? I would so love to see that!)

Ps. I'm Team #TheOneWhoWillKillHer *smirks*

For more of my reviews, please visit:
Profile Image for Miranda Reads.
1,589 reviews157k followers
December 10, 2020

Latest BookTube Video is up - a totally serious take on writing Young Adult Lit!
You know that feeling when you read a particularly bad YA and you just have to set down the book and ask, why?

Why in the world did someone give the ok to publish this mess?

Why are the characters so effing dumb?

Why did I even pick this book up?

This happens (on average) once per YA book for me... and Aveyard's book was so far above average that I was honestly impressed.

This book had me questioning everything

WHY is everything always Mare's fault?

Her sister getting caught for stealing? Totally Mare's fault.

Rebel uprising? Totally on Mare's shoulders.

Causing countless deaths on account of her misguided sense of justice? Wait, yeah, that one is actually on her

...There is a difference between taking responsibility for your actions and squeezing out every last ounce of sympathy for your main character.

This is a case of the latter.

WHY is everything repeated three times?

Is there a word count limit Aveyard was building to?

Did someone regift a thesaurus to her last Christmas?

If so, why can't she find any synonyms for Red as the Dawn?

That bloody crimson freaking dawn was the bane of my existence.

WHY is there so much angst??

There's excusable teenage angst...and there's what we had to read.

It's like, come on, they (Mare's captors) literally made Mare read one paragraph of propaganda in exchange for letting her marry the hot prince.

Stop complaining about the "torture" - they LITERALLY made you a princess.

WHY are first fridays even mentioned at all??

It's like in one chapter and then the entire city/world totally forgot they were a thing.

It's like Aveyard was like, "Let's throw in a bit of Hunger Games" but then her editors said, "Sorry, there's a whole series about that." and then they forgot to delete it from the manuscript.

WHY did I pick up this book?

Don't actually have a good reason other than a friend said they thought it was terrible and wanted my opinion.

Guess we figured out that...

Audiobook Comments
The reader really embodied Mare, which made listening to this book really terrible. Every whine was emphasized, ever pout was pouted...I ended up listening to this one on 1.5x speed just to get through it faster.

YouTube | Blog | Instagram | Twitter | Facebook | Snapchat @miranda_reads
May 3, 2015
I'm sure it's great if you liked Red Rising. I did not like Red Rising.

DNFed this around the 20% mark. I hated the main character. Stupid, selfish, destructive brat intent on destroying the lives of her loved ones with all the makings of a special snowflake. I cannot stand selfishness when it involves harming the lives of innocents. I can't tolerate this character. I can't finish this book. It's been a month since I tried to read on and it's just pointless.
Profile Image for Jesse (JesseTheReader).
468 reviews176k followers
January 20, 2016
this was a re-read for me.
my original review can be found here:

After re-reading this, I stand by my original 4 star rating and my overall enjoyment of this book. I want to make it clear that I know this book does not have the most original concept and it also uses a lot of tropes, but I still had such a fun time reading it. I love the characters and the shock factor and the world. I can't wait to give Glass Sword a go and see where Victoria Aveyard takes this story.
Profile Image for Jesse (JesseTheReader).
468 reviews176k followers
February 17, 2015
This was fantastic! I thoroughly enjoyed this crazy adventure of a book. I will say though that it did take a bit of time for me to really get into this book. I also felt the world is still a bit underdeveloped for my liking, but I'm hoping that I gain a better understanding for everything in the sequel. Other than that such an exciting read, full of twists and turns that will leave you flailing all over the place! HECK I'M STILL FLAILING.
Profile Image for Sasha Alsberg.
Author 8 books66.6k followers
October 23, 2015
That plot twist though....
That betrayal though....
Red Queen was fantastic, especially the ending! Wow!
757 reviews2,348 followers
March 21, 2018
Red Queen? more like Trash Queen, hmm yes, much better.

I wish I kept putting this book off until I eventually died someday. I would have been saved from the incredible fucking boredom and dumb ass characters.

Actual footage of me crying because I wasted three days on this book when I could have been reading good quality smut:

Okay, but why was this book so long??? I feel like it could have been cut down by 383 pages instead of fucking dragging to a disappointing and predictable ending. Guys, the writing it's so tedious, slow, dull, monotonous and slow and uneventful and tbh at this point I'd rather sit down and sing the Barney theme song (which is fucKing lit by the way) over and over again till someone finds me dead in my room.

Here's a concept: everyone dies in this book and Barney rules the kingdom because he will be everyone's friend!!!! and he can show you a lot of tHINGS.

Anyways, let's talk about Mare Barrow, whose name rEMINDS ME OF A HORSE??? How am I supposed to take her seriously when I always think of a horse whenever someone says her name. And she's just so dumb?? And annoying?? her death is very much needed thanks.

Cal is also dumb and annoying and has no personality whatsoever. His death would also be appreciated.

And Maven???

that was not a fun experience.

also to every single character in this book:

……..(‘(…´…´…. ¯~/’…’)
……….”…\………. _.·´

THEY'RE ALL fucking Stupid and I can't wait for their deaths in the next book, especially Mare Barrow whose name reminds me of a hORSE.

god, was I BORED and I predicted the major plot twist. the character's were blander than a potato and honestly?? I want to feed them to sharks.

review to come after I'm done screaming over this waste of a pretty cover.

BR with this smexy beast.

I scrolling through my friends reviews and every single one of them has read them. Like literally everyone has read this except me??? Sana tf you doing???

Ok but this series is finally ending so i can start it soon!! And the covers of every single book is gorgeous, i can't even,,,
Profile Image for Steph Sinclair.
461 reviews11.1k followers
October 29, 2014

It's like an X-Men dystopia stuck in a high fantasy world on crack.


Look, guys, don't worry about the love triangle. Actually, calling it a love triangle is very spoilerish and I wish I could further calm your feels, but alas, you must read it for yourself.

Immensely loved this with very minor reservations and I can't wait for book 2! Full review to come!
Profile Image for Zoë.
328 reviews65.8k followers
May 28, 2015
Book 19/100 for 2015

UPDATE: Giving it 3 stars because it's only been three months and I've already forgotten everything about this book. I enjoyed reading it, but it was so similar to many other YA books that it's not memorable.

WOAH. That was an intense book and I really enjoyed it! I am a sucker for superpowers and this book had such a cool variety of them! I was so into this book that I stayed up very, very late two nights in a row so I could see what happened next. It was a little predictable at times and I can see why people say that it's really similar plot-wise to a couple of other books, but I still liked it very much! I just want a little more world building and a little more romance (I'm always going to vote for more romance, to be honest), but I'm almost positive that that will all happen in the next book!
Also, I really want a map for the world! I feel like that would be such a cool addition to the book.
Profile Image for ~Calliope~.
238 reviews373 followers
January 31, 2023
“I am finally learning my lesson. Anyone can betray anyone.”

Ohhh Goddd!! What a plot twist.
In the entire book I was like:
hmmm team Cal. No!! Team Maven.. Hmm Team Cal.. Team Maven.. Team Cal&Maven :P

And then:

I did not see that coming.. Julian was so right!!!
"He is his mother's son.”

Why???Why?? Why did he do that to us??I loved him..

“I told you to hide your heart once. You should have listened.”

"Cal betrayed me, and I betrayed him. And you betrayed us both, in a thousand different ways. I choose no one.”

I am sorry.I see Mare's betrayal and Maven's (obviously)... But I don't see Cal's betrayal. He never lied to her. She just assumed that he will go against his beliefs and his father? Okay!


So, what team am I?
Profile Image for Sofia.
231 reviews6,962 followers
January 4, 2021
To whoever thought writing formulaic YA dystopian novels was a good idea....

I hate you.

YA dystopia is basically a game of Mad Libs. Shall we play?

__Insert name__ lives in a corrupt society where people are divided by __insert something along the lines of factions/districts/blood color__. She is a __insert oppressed race__, which means she slaves away for the "good" of __insert corrupt government__. But __insert name__ is not like other girls. She can __insert special ability__, which makes her a target. She longs for home and the boy she left behind, __insert boy she left behind__, who is probably in love with her, even though she is blissfully oblivious. But there is another boy within the corrupt government who is not like other boys...

Et cetera, et cetera. Fill in the blanks.

Mare Barrow lives in a corrupt society where people are divided by the color of their blood. She is a Red, which means she slaves away for the "good" of the Silvers. But Mare is not like other girls. She can control electricity, which makes her a target. She longs for home and the boy she left behind, Kilorn, who is probably in love with her, even though she is blissfully oblivious. But there is another boy within the corrupt government who is not like other boys....

Katniss Everdeen lives in a corrupt society where people are divided by districts. She is a citizen of District 12, which means she slaves away for the "good" of the Capitol. But Katniss is not like other girls. She can use a bow, which makes her a target. She longs for home and the boy she left behind, Gale, who is probably in love with her, even though she is blissfully oblivious. But there is another boy within the corrupt government who is not like other boys....

Do you see? *awkward silence* *someone in the audience coughs* WE HAVE BEEN BRAINWASHED.

The rest of this review is riddled with spoilers, so stop here if you haven't read the book or if you just don't care.

This book makes no sense at all. Mare is sent off to become Silver royalty because she's special, but she doesn't have Silver blood. Which means a simple paper cut could expose her. First of all, Evangeline clearly wants to kill her, but prevents herself from cutting Mare multiple times because ~drama~ and ~suspense.~ But why do Elara and Tiberius want to keep her alive, anyway? Killing her would solve all their problems. It's not that hard to cover up her electric abilities afterwards. And then they betroth her to Maven, but why would they want a Red in a position of power? Of course, it's all a set-up at the end, but really? Mare fell for this? It's so blatantly obvious that Maven was lying. What would he have to gain, anyway? There are so many holes in this plot, and Mare either ignores them because of ✨love✨ or is too empty-headed to see them. This so-called Scarlet Guard trusts him blindly, giving him all their precious little secrets. It's so dumb. And then Elara is apparently a whisper, so she can look through people's thoughts. They somehow thought they would never be found (they being Mare Barrow). Don't be an idiot. Oops, it's too late.

I haven't seen any characters this bland since Kai, either. Cal and Maven are the same person, except one is less powerful and moody. Why is this a hard choice for Mare? Just kill them both, escape, pull a Kaz Brekker or whatever. Forget the stupid angsty princes and their stupid angsty declarations of fake love. Life's too short to waste it with men.

My favorite character was Evangeline. Yes, the shallow mean girl who was only there to antagonize Mare. Because girl-on-girl hate is just SO COOL. I hope you detect my sarcasm. At least she knew what she was doing, unlike Bone Marrow (courtesy to whoever told me that joke, it was A+).

And Horse Wheelbarrow must feel personally responsible for EVERY LITTLE THING, even if she didn't even cause it.

I feel like a traitor. What are my parents eating for dinner tonight?

Eat the stupid food. That's what it's there for.

If it all goes to plan, he'll never hug his sister again. Evangeline will have lost a brother.

Oh, be quiet. People have siblings, okay? They don't matter.

He's a father. He's a father and we're going to kill him.

Just kill him already. I thought you hated these Silvers.

"Children." The words rip out of me. "He's a father.

Yeah, well, they're all fathers. They're all daughters/sons. They're all sisters/brothers. ??? What are you trying to say here? Everyone has family. Everyone is related to someone. just kill the guy already

Maybe he knew the colonel; maybe he was her brother, her cousin.

Again with the personal responsibility! Obviously they're related to someone.

And then there is Mare Barrow the Hypocrite, who hates all Silvers for being violent, heartless monsters and yet somehow expects them to treat Reds like more than glorified slaves. It works both ways, you know. Or, at least, it should.

Cal's blood might be silver, but his heart is as black as burned skin.

"I can fault him for whatever I want," I snort, remembering the war books and death guides all over his room. "He's just like all the others."

As if this weren't enough, Mare's not-like-other-girls-ness is so overpoweringly annoying that it seeps into all the prose.

"You don't seem like the girl to weep at the drop of a hat."

My stomach churns, but not with the excitement or nerves or any of the things silly girls talk about.

Excuse me? Can I not be excited or nervous without being branded as a "silly girl?"

Finally (I'm almost done), can we stop with this purple-prose-that's-just-weird trend that's going on in YA?

The only things that serve to distinguish us, outwardly at least, is that Silvers stand tall. Our backs are bent by work and unanswered hope and the inevitable disappointment with our lot in life.

Hermione clapping GIF on GIFER - by Gawyn

Congratulations. You are officially On-Brand YA.

My heart plummets in my chest until it bounces around my toes.

What is this? Shatter Me?

There's only one thing I did like--Queen Elara. She was a very compelling villain with layers, which surprised me in a book that was purely black-and-white. I sympathized with her (sometimes, at least more than I did with Horse).

But, for the most part, this was the same old thing that's been churning out of the YA Machines since the year 2000.

1.5 stars

Buddy read with my bestest buddy. We both hated it.
509 reviews2,414 followers
February 6, 2015

Reading Red Queen was like receiving sour candy when you were expecting some glorious sugary sweets. I just felt so much disappointment after turning the last page, since I was expecting a fresh new story out of this one.

This book had so much potential, but after a few chapters of reading, I got this sense of déjà vu, and yup, you guessed it, this book was a cardboard cut-out of all your favorite YA novels put together.

Exhibit A: There are the Reds, slaves the Silvers, who are amazing beings with odd powers. The Reds don't do much to escape their current living states and go on being doormats throughout the book, until a certain figure of strength (the heroine) supports them. A very common dystopian trope.

Exhibit B: Mare Barrow is the reckless "Savior of All" who is eventually blinded by her romantic interest. Yes, Mare can be considered badass with her unique ability and sassy attitude, but she felt like your typical Mary Sue for me. And when her two love interests come along, she thinks of them both constantly and rather obsessively.

Exhibit C: Yes, the customary love triangle square is present. Mare is drawn to two brothers (should I mention that they're princes?) but is more attracted to the older, more mature one (who, by the way, I think is as interesting as a brick). I like the other brother's character, but there's definitely zero chemistry between him and Mare. There's also your resident Queen Bee, Evangeline, who seems to hate Mare the moment they lock eyes.

Another iffy thing about the book was the lack of a backstory. Sure, I enjoyed all the Red vs. Silver propaganda, but I would've liked to find out how everything became the way they are now. Maybe the next books will give me that.

Overall, if you're one of those people who reads and loves all those popular young adult books out in the market today (as well as The Selection-esque type books, I really believe that Red Queen will be a good fit for you.
Profile Image for booksnpenguins (wingspan matters).
796 reviews2,873 followers
January 24, 2022
“I am finally learning my lesson. Anyone can betray anyone.”

red queen by victoria aveyard? more like red queen by victoria graveyard, because that's where this book put me.

No, okay, listen.
Let me explain why this book was a no-no for me.

We could say most of my problems with this book are to blame on wrong timing.
I'm firmly convinced that if I read it something like six years ago, I probably would have liked it. Not loved it, but it would have definitely gained a couple more stars and a bit more attention from my part.

Unfortunately, I picked it up too late, once I've eventually had my chance to read around and already managed to juggle my way out of the various The Hunger Games, The Selection,
Divergent, Red Rising and the rest of the merry dystopian brigade.
So it left nothing to discover and this book didn't bring anything new to my reading experience.

It's not even about it being similar to other books, I promise.
I mean, I don't mind parallels, but we're talking copy-pasting of plots, here.
To me, Red Queen felt like large bowl of minestrone made from scraps of those novels above, with only the tiniest and faintest bit of originality that were still too weak to get me hooked.

Maybe if it wasn't for all this, I would have found it entertaining and thrilling, instead of boring and dull, but being completely honest, if it wasn't for this, we would also be talking about a different book.
Different being the word.

You can change the factors only a determined number of times, but in the end, the final product stays the same.
Want an example? I have tons.
We have, in fact, the One not-like-other-girls girl who's going to save the day because who else could?; the caste system where the poors are poorer and the riches wear weird clothes; the brother-like best friend who is an obvious pining mess; the family fueds; the lies; the prince (even if this time we have even 2!); the cover marriages; the bitchy rivals; the rebels; the politics conspiracies; the inevitable love-*insert random geometrical shape*....
Now put all this together and you could really be talking about any or every one of those books.
Seriously. You name it, Red Queen has it.
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

To be honest, I'm not even sure the concept behind this book is that bad, after all, it just was deadly trite, and it definitely wasn't for me.

Add to this that I didn't particularly like any of the characters (truth be told, I sort of don't dislike Maven, but only a little) enough to be interested in their lives, personal issues and developments, and you'll have an idea of what's keeping me, from this moment on, at least twenty feet away from this series.

I liked the writing, though, reason for which I decided to give the author another chance.
That is, as long as it doesn't involve dystopian worlds, cheesy romance and The Bachelor-like subplots.

pre-reading review (which, if you ask me, turned out to be kind of accurate)

Do I know what I'm getting myself into? Yep.
Am I going to need therapy after this book? Maybe.
Does the premise of a love triangle (square? pentagon?) bother me? Definitely.
Is this book going to make me want to flip tables? Probably.
Am I going to regret reading this book? Eventually.
Am I really sure I should read it? AT ALL.
Let's do this!

Professional Reader
10 Book Reviews
Reviews Published
Profile Image for Cindy.
407 reviews116k followers
March 4, 2017
Intense, dark, and rifled with so many betrayals and counter-betrayals that I lost count. The characters are complex and morally gray, each battling their own conflicting interests. Their journeys show the multifaceted sides to a war and how the line between those two sides often blur. No, the story isn't anything original, and yes, it has all the standard fantasy tropes that would make it generic - but this is a personal 5 for me, just because it made me gasp several times and mutter "damn" under my breath as I stayed up late to blaze through all the chapters.
Profile Image for ✨    jami   ✨.
680 reviews3,948 followers
May 24, 2020

- A special snowflake chosen one
- A breath we didn't realise we were holding in
- A prince who has to deal with the woes of being privileged and wealthy and Not Oppressed ™ x2
- A girl we all need to hate just because what better than a pointless female rivalry over men
- "That stranger I met last night ??!! turns out he's a prince !!!???" trope
- Living in your families shadows ™
- Being salty for no good reason
- dealing with the horrORS of the friendzone
- A "let me teach you to dance scene" (I hate them so much)
- A scene that's literally straight outta The Hunger Games
- so. many. tropes.

Eh. EH. I know alot of people love this and I can see why but for me it just wasn't working. I just, no thanks. nooo thanks. (And I am sad because I thought the premise was cool and then ... no )

I literally didn't care about any of the characters which made it very hard to care about any of the plot. All the characters seemed cliche and tropey and plain. Mare was just so boring and stupid and I could not believe she actually managed to survive that. I think she's supposed to be "the next Katniss" but it's like .. Mare wouldn't have survived the hunger games is all I'm saying. She was just silly and boring and exhausting I honestly rolled my eyes at her like every 5 pages. Also, fake action girl. Which I hate. Don't tell me your protag. it powerful and strong and great, WRITE HER THAT WAY goddamn.

This is how I felt about Mare for like, 97% of it

Cal and Maven are also so boring ?? I don't know I just feel like I've read about them in other books before a hundred times. They're just all cookie cutter characters who don't bring anything new to the table. Granted, the "twist" at the end was kind of nice but still I honesty didn't even care about the betrayal or anything because I was just felt nothing for any of them. And SO MUCH was about how Cal and Maven got it sooo bad even though they're rich, spoilt, privileged royalty who really do have first world problems. It was like, yes all the Red's are starving, dying in the streets and in war but listen !! Silvers don't get to choose who they marry so tragic lets talk about that.

The plot was very predictable and I didn't feel like anything actually happened. It was very classic dystopian and YA and followed a series of events I've seen before. It was VERY Hunger Games (the opening scene literally screams thg) and that kind of annoyed me because I didn't come here to read a cheap knock-off of the Hunger Games. The beginning was bad with me honestly thinking of quitting for the first 100 pages. After that it gets better and the whole but around 200-300 is pretty good (mostly the bit in the ball) but it's still kind of weird pacing (there are TWO climaxes in this and it feels so unnatural because there's a climax and then 50-70 pages of nothing right in the middle before the next one??)

The actual premise was quite cool with the fractions in society along blood lines, and with the "silverbloods" having powers but I didn't feel there was enough worldbuilding. There was literally no history to the world (or characters to that matter) and I wish there was because there was no explainable reason for how this cycle of abuse towards reds even began. The whole world is underpinned by this war going on but the origins of the war and why anyone should care is never properly explained either. It's so frustrating. The magic system was alright, but again needed more explaining and expansion.

Ok now onto the romance. Blergh. Do I care? Absolutely not. I flip between being confused as to why the HECK she'd be drooling over THE PEOPLE WHO LITERALLY CRUELLY OPPRESS HER AND EVERYONE SHE KNOWS and being confused as to what she see's in either of them anyway. (also, there's a love triangle/sort of square and ick) Basically, they're both stupid and I hope she ends up with like, Evangeline. BUt seriously, there was so much pointless and annoying romance in this and then the end basically boiled down to her being like I choose no one because she's so dramatic and it's like ?? I think we're supposed to be proud of her but it's literally irrelevant at that point and also ?? not even true but anyway.
Like I ?? I could not believe how she was all "HE LOVES ME" after like 250 pages when honestly they had had like 5 conversations it was so insta-love and gross I'm grossed out no thankyou.

It was just a mESS urgh. I mean, it could have been better if it weren't for all the annoying, ridiculous tropes, cookie-cutter and boring characters, weird paced plot and poor worldbuilding.

Points for, making some characters I cared about like: Shade, Lucas, Julian, Sara, Farley, Evangeline, Kilorn and Elara. Points for Elara not being as stupid as I thought (the reveal she knew about Mare all along was such a relief because before that I could not believe how freakin stupid she was) Also points for a genuinely good scene were Mare called Cal/Maven out on their bullshit and whining about something totally irrelevant considering their blinding privilege.

Anyway, I might think about book 2 but probably not for a while. I am so meh about this at least it was short and didn't take long.

UPDATE: Recently saw Mare described as "A whiny pikachu". This is accurate. Also all this pokemon Go'ing has led me to the realisation that their magic system is very pokemon like the bit when Maven gets destroyed by the water type because he's fire type ITS POKEMON I'm telling you
Profile Image for Kiki.
194 reviews8,526 followers
February 5, 2016
Good lord in heaven! What in the name of Yves Saint Laurent was THAT?

You know how cigarette packets come with those white panels on the front that say SMOKING KILLS and SMOKING SERIOUSLY HARMS YOU AND OTHERS AROUND YOU? This book should carry one of those labels. It would say, THIS BOOK IS REALLY GENERIC.

It's not that it's bad. Well. Okay. Look, I'm trying to be diplomatic. This book was bad, but it's not the sort of thing that, if you're interested, you shouldn't read. There were some pretty cool scenes... Okay. One cool scene.

(Safari keeps correcting my 's' to a 'z' and it's pissing me off.)

But the problem is that this book is just a great big patchwork of a thousand other YA sci-fi dystopia melodramas that I really couldn't care less about. It's nothing special, the characters are nothing special, the plot is laughably simplistic. Even the twist was visible from a mile off, because of course that character that everyone has been side-eyeing for the last three hundred pages is evil. Of course the character that the heroine tries the hardest to convince herself is good people is bad people.

But it's so cringey, like making small talk with the hairdresser. Here's this incredibly boring girl, Alina Starkov, who gets taken to the Capitol when her Grisha powers emerge in dire straits (!) to be initiated into the X-Men elite where Magneto's actual children are the stock Misogynistic Caricature Of A Popular Mean Girl(tm) and Snotty Popular Boy Who Is Equally Bad But Obviously Less Culpable Than His Sister(tm). Cersei Lannister engages Alina in a battle of wills

Even the writing is lacklustre; it sort of does its job but that's it. Even the Rise, red as the dawn thing that was clearly a marketing tool falls flat. I've said this before and I'll say it again: you can develop your protagonist until you're blue in the face, but a story is nothing without a supporting cast. World building is nothing without decent supporting characters. I knew this book and I would have a hard time getting along when I realized it was written in exhausting, unfunny "snarky" first person, but look at the world Suzanne Collins managed to built through the eyes of one character. You sell yourself short when you try to create a high fantasy/sci-fi/dystopian world through a first-person narrative, but it can be done.

In terms of the world building, there is none. If world building were food, this book would be starving. There's this glassy castle and a smoky district and then the nasty Stilts, but it's so skimpy, guys. There's no depth to it at all. And this book tries to do the biopunk thing with the silver blood and the inherited powers but it's all just drugs and magnets, isn't it? The fact that anybody believes the ruse around Mare is proof that these people might be powerful, but there's nothing but cobwebs between their ears.

Red Queen was not a letdown for me, though. I didn't have high hopes to begin with, so I wasn't disappointed in the slightest. I suppose that's the best outcome from all of this: I gained and lost nothing. Aces!
Profile Image for jessica.
2,555 reviews35.6k followers
July 4, 2019
have i already read countless variations of this plot in other books? you betcha.
does that mean i enjoyed this any less? no way, josé!

call me predictable (just like this book), but i guess i have a type and its YA dystopian series with a touch of fantasy.

4 stars
Profile Image for MischaS_.
785 reviews1,372 followers
July 23, 2020
This review might be mildly spoilerish.

I'm sort of sorry because I know if I read this book 5 or 6 years ago I would have loved it. I really wish this was published earlier and I also had time to read it right after it was published. Now? I'm mostly annoyed by it. Maybe because I wish I was stuck in time so I could still enjoy these? But I'm also a bit proud that I finally finished this one.

Also, this book just reminds me of too many other books. Selection (the marry the prince part), Divergent (the having oh-so-secret and so-dangerous powers that will help to tear the system down and also will be the same, I am the only one with these powers, and then you have this power, you have this power, and maybe everyone will have this power. What is this? Oprah?), then I see Hunger Games (the beginning of the book in the arena and Gisa practically being Prim. Also Kilorn really reminds me of Hurricane). And probably more but I think this list is enough to make the image.

EDIT: Okay, I knew I was not done with this review.
- How come that Mare never knew about her before this? Makes no sense and it's annoying, honestly.
- She says several times how brave Maven is and grate etc.

So the first thing that is sort of problem is that I did not want to continue with the book once I started reading it. I started it in August 2018!

Main problem? I don't like Mare, at all. I could not get to like her. She just does not have any main character spark for me. And I am really sorry to say this, but pretty often she even came off as absolutely clueless or even dumb. From the start, she hates Silvers because they are just monsters, mean etc. But then she meets Cal, knows nothing about him but tells him everything! She trusts him for no real reason.

“It’s not my fault you were stupid enough to play along,”

I could not describe Mare better than that! And she was warned several times that anyone could betray anyone.

Then she got into the whole mess. She hates the Silvers who are so mean. But suddenly she likes Maven. She trusts him. Like, why? She knows him and Cal for that matter for a couple of days. After a lifetime of hating Silvers or even being afraid of them, she just trusts them. And the horrifying thing is that you cannot really even see her thinking if just maybe they/anyone is trying to use her. Because she is a brand new, technically powerful player in the arena and of course everyone would love to have on their side.
Then she thinks she could just sneak around, using her powers and no one would ever think about it. Like: "You know, all these cameras suddenly turning off, do you maybe think that it could be that girl that can control electricity? Just maybe?"
Why does she think all Silvers are stupid?

Then, I don't like Cal. Because he is just a little mister perfect. There is nothing about him.

Father - ... There must be another way."

In the end, he was also as naive as Mare was. Same with taunting making it like he is weak to refuse to battle with him. There is no weakness in knowing you are weaker and not able to win against someone in fair battle or on their terms. That would not be brave that would be stupid! You fight to win, not to present the best battle possible and let the best fighter win.

I was not sure about Maven. Cause he seemed, boring? And suspicious.

The Sentinels bunch around Maven, still not used to guarding me as well...

That makes no sense! If you're there to guard someone you just don't forget about it cause it's new to you.

It looks like I even have problems writing this review. I have so much to say that I keep forgetting.

Also, it seems to have every trope imaginable.
- She is chosen one, having powers like no one else
- She has powers that the Reds don't have, it should be only for Silvers
- <-- I was able to say this was going to happen the moment we learned about it.
- No one dares to fight the regime however suddenly there is a secret rebellion
- The rebellion just needs that person for their rebellion to have a chance
- The sort of chosen one
- The best friend who is close to being a love interest
- He will be still in the game to win the main heroine, but in the end, he will lose
-And I could continue like that for a very long time.
-Person is brave, untill we know they are actually the bad guy. Cause a villain cannot be brave! EVER!

So, what I liked?
I liked Evangeline and Ptolemus.

I sort of wonder what will happen in the rest of the series, but I was really disappointed with this one. So, I am not sure if I will read it.
Profile Image for Emily (Books with Emily Fox).
551 reviews60.5k followers
June 15, 2017
A lot of people were mentioning that this was like a lot of different dystopian books and while I agree, I still think this is worth the read.
I enjoyed the world, the magic system... even with the romantic bits.
I definitely saw parts of the ending coming but it was still entertaining!

Will be continuing the series!
Profile Image for Mohammed Arabey.
709 reviews5,731 followers
February 26, 2017

10% 1984 + 15% Hunger Games + 10% X-Men + 10% Games of Thrones + 15% Divergent..
That'd leave us with only 40% of Original Red Queen..

Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed it ,I may even held extra +rating till part 2 if it gets more of the Original Red Queen storyline..
What really bugs me here was the many Deja vus from HG and Divergent since I didn't like the latter's plot much.
But let's see step by step with The Red..

The Plot and the Setting
1-10% of 1984

In an Orwellian atmosphere of Destopia, we're in Norta, a country that in a constant war with neighbour countries..
The Elite push the low class citizens into Poverty..and fight in wars..
And to kill any think of a rebellion ,they're watching Everyone, even -specifically- those closed to the king in the Palace.
'Camera's are everywhere' and the communication means between the low class almost nonexist..although there's a good technology there.

2- 15% of Hunger Games

Every boy and girl of the low class, once turned seventeen, must go to Conscription, unless working for someone... and they who just fights in the front lines only
By the time they finish their time they are lost an arm, a leg, or just dead..

The workers always paid low of course, and there's this part of Norta -this district- where just factories and technology workers, it's very polluted that skies are dark with smoke , the people in this district can never see the sun..
oh , and there's a nuclear polluted area -district-as well, that the elites and government 'believe' it can't be crossed -Does the revolutionaries believe that too?

To show how powerful the 'Elite' are , just to erase any rebellion ideas, every first Friday the low class are forced to gather and witness dangerous arena fighting between two of the elite...WHAT? HOW?

3- 10% of X-Men

The Elite are Silvers...Silver blood...they have supernatural abilities , mutant powers... such as one can control wind , one can move ultra fast, one can control metal, ....etc..

at this world they are the elite, they who rule the normals, powerless humans, the Red bloods, Reds.

4- 10% of Game of Thrones

The Silvers families are houses, Every house has a certain ability and power..
They're all Elite , yes..but there's major big houses and some mundane ones..
Every House has certain 2 colours or more, used for costumes..

There's a big party for the King's son,the Prince..the heir of the Throne to choose a wife from one of the big houses, The chosen princess , the Future Queen..
And every girl show the power of her house..
so this party is actually a girlie Game of Thrones...

What's really bugged me here that it supposed to be modern, in the future...a dystopia... but the whole references to villages, markets, houses,swords,places and Kings and thrones, and mixing that with cameras, electricity , guns..aeroplanes and under-trains made me keep distracted between visualising the novel in my head as old times, and new futuristic one..

5- 15% of Divergent

HERE comes our Mare, The Red... who is just a normal Katniss Everdean-like , law breaker, have a sense of rebellion..yet it's her sister who have work and support the family after her 3 brothers went to the will she when she 17.

But everything change when she tried to save her best -kinda only- friend with help of some revolutionaries, and then meeting a charming Cal/the Prince...The Heir to the Throne..

And only when he helped her to work at the Palace as a servant, and while the Game of the candidates princesses and future Queen is on, a huge revelation about Mare is just Out...
She has Power..just like the Silver Bloods..She can control Electricity, and even more powerful than the Silvers...she , the Red , has powers of the silvers...

She's the Little Lighting Girl..

And by the story goes, you'll see how it like Divergents in the Divergent series, tracking and hunting them down...

But with a new story of Love, some of it totally unconvincing.
And a new Betrayal story that's totally very good written, although a bit predictable for me..

So now you know all the basic story line..

Can't say I didn't like it...I did since I love most of the elements , but the mix was confusing me a lot with the style of old kings era and the new tech.

The Characters
I didn't like Mare that much, her relation with her friend was very annoying to me , may be because of his shallow character ...but can't deny that I get attached to her by the final chapters which was thrilling.

The rest of the characters were ranged from very good to very shallow or just similar to other characters of the previous 5 major novels..
I liked Maven , he's very well written, Cal was perfect most of the times does the Queen...who reminded me a bit with Queen Cersei Lannister from GOT.

The Old master Julian and his back story was good to although remind me of The Giver's master
Also I wished to shed more light into the world before...but can't hope much..

Will wait for the next part..I really hope it'd be better and more original...

PS: A big respect to the author for her 'Aknowledgement' part where she mentioned many authors, Directors and Screenwriters that inspired her..and mentioning J.K. Rowling and George R.R. Martin' ..

Mohammed Arabey
From 1 Aug. 2015
To 4 Aug. 2015
Profile Image for Jess.
470 reviews598 followers
January 21, 2015
It’s getting a little hot in here, isn’t it? That’s because Red Queen has unearthed what I never thought could occur: A mini Darkling. That’s right. Yet another morally ambiguous character and I am sold.

I’m a book pusher and I’m going to push this one right into your hearts. Red Queen is the fantasy that I’ve been searching for. You’ve probably all heard the comparisons before and honestly, they speak the truth. Red Queen took the best elements from all our favourites (and our not so much) tales and smushed them into one phenomenal book with an equally addictive storyline. Yes, this is indeed an Xmen high fantasy and yes, my heart did stop. Aveyard has ticked all the right boxes for me. She’s a heck of a debut.

Red Queen begins as all high fantasy dystopias do, with a young unassuming girl slumming her way through her rather unfortunate situation only to discover that she’s special. Yes, that does sound mildly sarcastic. Yes, this did have the “You’re special” line. But you know what? I’ve come to a point in my life where I’ve realised, do YA fantasies do it any other way? It feels like a genre requirement at this stage and who am I to complain when a hundred and one others do the exact same thing. Mare Barrow is a highly agile pickpocket. It’s the only means with which she can support her family. But time is running out. Like her brothers, she sees a future of conscription for herself. Her eighteenth birthday is looming and without a job to pardon her, she is set to enter the frontline. And it scares her. The thought of war, the thought of leaving her sweet, innocent sister behind, the thought of waving goodbye to her parents, yet another member of the family unable to support them. However as life may have it, her seventeen years of familiar suffering are about to take a different turn. As in, she’ll suffer, just at different means. You see, Mare is discovered to be an impossibility, the secret that could topple an already precarious hierarchy. Society is ruled by the silvers. They are a race seemingly set apart by God. They themselves have usurped the title. As abnormalities defying the mundane genetic makeup, they are creatures to be feared. You can go either two ways with that—to the ditches or raised up on a throne. The Silvers are blessed with the latter. They are Gods in the arena of life.

“Long ago he called us ants, Red ants burning in the light of a Silver sun. Destroyed by the greatness of others, losing the battle for our right to exist because we are not special. We did not evolve like them, with powers and strengths beyond our limited imaginations.”

Their inhuman capacity to bend the elements has crafted an illusion of invincibility. Reds however bleed red. They are mortals, cursed to a life of servitude.

“…no one pays attention to another Red servant, another insect wandering past the feet of gods.”

And a society without equality? It’s a dangerous tower, begging to topple over.

As a Red with a Silver aptitude, Mare is dropped into a dangerous game. It is a political desire that keeps her alive. While her days are limited to however long she can keep in line, Mare is given a route out of the slums, away from her fate of war. In a bid to placate the hunger for a rebellion, she becomes a Red in disguise as a Silver, betrothed to the King’s second son. From there on out, it is a game of chess.

"A puppet. A show to keep people happy, quiet, and trampled.”

Alliances must be won and bought. Secrets come at a cost.

What I adored about Red Queen is the concept. It was delectable. The abilities reminiscent of XMEN add a unique flavour to the mix. The world building was neither underwhelming, nor overwhelming. Aveyard interweaves all facts and ideas into her intricate world in a fluid manner. We also see elements of The Selection added to the bag, only without the pettiness. We enter Aveyard’s world just as Crown Prince Cal is set to be engaged. The Queenstrial is set in place as a selection process. Only, instead of vying for the Princes attention, it is a little more of a family affair. These Silver women all hail from families equivalent to dukes and duchesses. It’s a bloodbath, not between the ladies, but between the families. And they’re all out to impress one person: the king. You see, it’s all a ploy, for the Queenstrial is merely a selection process for political ties. The marriage is a means to an end, an cementation of an alliance. And in that arena there is only one thing that prevails: strength. Power and strength are two concepts that could happily marry one another, and in Red Queen, they certainly do.

The action sequences were incredible. Red Queen digs a little deeper, exploring political themes, alliances and the ultimate consequence of repressing a race.

“This world is Silver, but it is also fray. There is no black and white.”

It, like all dystopias, tells the tale of a fight for liberation. Humanity does not wish to be oppressed. It craves expression. And the structures that have carefully restricted the Reds, barricading them into one route in life, threatens to crumble with the dawn of every new day.

“You believe you are the masters of the world but your reign as kings and gods is at an end.”

Unlike other dystopias, we deal with life at court in Red Queen. And in that instance, there is a heavy influence of political ploys, deceit and games. It is a battlefield and it is the explicit who fall first. The shadows, those who play their cards, are the ones who ultimately have the upper hand.

“I’m the shadow and no one remembers shadows.”

Red Queensets a question for the new dawn: Can those who cheat one another overlook perfidy in order to band together against an ultimate enemy who has betrayed them all?

For a debut novel, Aveyard writes stunningly. While she does not hold the outright lyrical styles of the likes of Bardugo and Stiefvater, she writes with a balanced combination of short, concise simplicity with an ounce of lyricism every now and again. It is a prose that will be likened by many. Often with high fantasy tales, humour can be disregarded, however I appreciated that Aveyard knows a little thing about sarcasm and banter and she incorporates it brilliantly.

“You want me to pin my entire operation, the entire revolution, on some teenaged love story? I can’t believe in this.”

I’m going to hug Aveyard. I love the dig she took at the conventional dystopia. My little heart is swelling with pride, considering this is a topic I tackled in a critical essay of mine (which I also refer to as my baby. You know, casually.) I enjoyed a good laugh here and there.

The characterisation was fantastic. We have a set of characters that are tenuous in their beliefs but deep down they are flawed. Tragically, deeply and realistically. Mare Barrow reeks of desperation. She’s in it to survive. She knows the stakes and I appreciated her character growth as she realises that there is a greater cause at hand. Cal, the crown prince, lives under the delusion of hierarchy. It is a precarious structure that he is set to rule and he understands the pros and cons—it is easier to maintain dictatorship then it is to liberate. And he attempts to seek the easier route. Maven, my little puppy, lingers in the backdrop, the second son to a kingdom that will never be his. He is demure, quiet but he is steadfast in his belief. Despite his apprehensiveness towards Mare, he finds himself intrigued by her. And he’s just a little sweetheart.

But I know that you’re all here to hear about the romance. I get you. We all know that there’s going to be one. And there is. One that I ship so incredibly hard. In fact, I may even ship the politically incorrect side because god knows I have a thing for sociopathic characters. They feed my curiosity. I’m intrigued by the unknown.

“He knows what he is and, worst of all, he likes it.”

Humbleness and good intentions do not faze me. Some may say that this is a love triangle. I’m going to go right ahead and say that it may not even be a romance, at this stage. If anything, Red Queen is playing down a dangerous path, one reminiscent of Bardugo’s infamous Grisha series. That’s right, I said it: We have a Darkling. You know how I feel about that. Of course I’d gravitate towards this book. That being said, this book reeks of betrayal. Love thrives off trust, connection, understanding. What brews in Red Queen is dark, delicious and destructive. Neither party will foster a healthy relationship.

Now I don’t want to speak too soon, considering I did an incredibly silly thing by reading this in 2014, but Red Queen has got to be my favourite fantasy set for 2015 thus far. That’s a bold statement to make, considering we haven’t even entered the year yet. I am however willing to take that risk. You see, Red Queen just explores a winning formula for me. We are at the brink of a revolution funded by the desire for revenge. It is justifying darkness in hope of pursuing lightness, liberation and levelling the amount of pungent injustice. And that is begging to fail. And I want to see that unfold.

Many thanks to the publisher for providing an advanced copy in exchange for an honest review. All quotes used were obtained from uncorrected proof that is subject to change in the final publication.

Two words: New Darkling. Read at own risk. Something's coming. Like my full review.


In the mean time, I'll be quick and vague. This is Xmen put in a cake mix with Shadow and Bone and The Selection (DON'T BE PUT OFF. I mean this in that we have a Selection BUT it is not a petty, shallow, fickle show of swinging back and forth. DO NOT EVEN COMPARE IT TO THAT.) We have a protagonist we longs to survive, a crumbling hierarchy, a delusional view of justice and peace and a war of strength and power. The stakes are high.

It is what appears to be a love triangle but honestly, it's not that in any sense. These characters are destructive, they are flawed, they shan't have a happily ever after. And they've cracked my heart in half, to be honest. I'm drowning in my emotions here.


Go preorder or something. This is beautiful. I'm book pushing this for 2015, alright?
Profile Image for Josu Diamond.
Author 8 books33.2k followers
September 29, 2015
Leído en la #LC_LaReinaRoja.

Oh, DIOS MÍO. Este es el claro ejemplo de que el hype está justificado. ESTÁ JUSTIFICADÍSIMO. Ha sido una montaña rusa de emociones, pero para nada común. Cada capítulo tiene al menos un giro en la trama, en cada capítulo tu opinión respecto a los personajes cambia, y a cada página tu corazón se acelera dependiendo de en qué situación Mare se encuentre. Porque siempre está amenazada, vengando, luchando o urdiendo planes. Apenas tiene tiempo para el amor, porque no es que sea secundario, es que el amor se usa como arma.

No sé por dónde empezar. No sé qué decir. Es verdad que ha habido partes no tan explosivas, pero es que las partes explosivas (que son la mayoría) son demasiadas, y muy bien llevadas. Me ha gustado que tenga un ritmo ágil, pero no una narración sencilla. Me explico: en novelas como Divergente, El corredor del Laberinto o Los Juegos del Hambre tenemos grandes historias pero con un estilo simple. Sin embargo, en el caso de La reina roja, la autora nos construye un mundo lleno de detalles. Decenas de alianzas, ciudades, tramas políticas... Todo ello para darle una profundidad propia de las novelas de fantasía, llenas de personajes secundarios con sus propios intereses y sueños, que en muchas ocasiones chocan con los de Mare.

La manera de construir la historia de Victoria Aveyard, así como la manera en la que maneja a sus personajes, es prácticamente de diez. Para ser un debut es más que sobresaliente, y sinceramente, su estilo es bastante complejo para ser un juvenil adulto comercial. (Porque era la gran apuesta de Harper, sí, estaba hecho para vender como churros.) Me ha sorprendido esa calidad, el cómo con cada página te sorprende y cómo consigue que los personajes no paren de cambiar, de evolucionar y de sorprender.

Me ha encantado, por otro lado, ver cómo apenas hay sexismo en esta novela. Se vende como algo similar a La Selección, pues las herederas de las Casas del reino se presentan ante los reyes para ser elegidas. Pero no se eligen por poder, dinero o belleza. Se eligen por habilidades. Quien tenga una habilidad más potente, quien sea más dañina o mortífera, será la elegida. Y ellas quieren ser elegidas por alcanzar el poder, por ascender. Me encanta ver cómo ninguno de los dos sexos se cosifica. Es simplemente fantástico encontrar cómo nuestra protagonista se encuentra a gusto en pantalones, cómo prefiere una armadura, al igual que la mayoría de mujeres de la novela. Podemos ver que no hay diferencia en el frente, QUE LAS MUJERES VAN A LA GUERRA Y SON GENERALAS, CORONELAS. Formidable, de verdad. La reina roja presenta una sociedad totalmente igualitaria y estoy muy orgulloso de haya un hueco para esta novela en el panorama juvenil actual. Bravo.

Y no sé qué más decir, la verdad. Su ritmo no es frenético, pero te mantiene en vilo, siempre intentando descubrir por dónde va a tirar la trama. A veces es cierto que resulta un poco obvia o previsible, pero siempre presenta una resolución distinta. Además, es agridulce, sin trama de amor ñoña (es casi inexistente) y con un final para nada esperanzador. Bueno, sí: esperanzador... pero de venganza. En La reina roja nadie es lo que parece.

Profile Image for Ahmad Sharabiani.
9,564 reviews27 followers
October 11, 2021
Red Queen (Red Queen #1), Victoria Aveyard

Red Queen is a young adult fantasy novel written by American writer Victoria Aveyard. It was her first series and her first novel. It was published in February 2015. Its sequels are Glass Sword, King's Cage and War Storm.

Mare Barrow is a Red living with her parents and a younger sister, Gisa. Her three older brothers, Bree, Tramy, and Shade, serve in the front line of a war fought between the northern Kingdom the Lakelands and the Barrow's homeland, the Kingdom of Norta.

Norta is currently ruled by King Tiberius Calore VI, one of many Silvers with supernatural powers that allow him and the rest of the Silvers, to rule over the more numerous but powerless Reds. Mare is jealous of her sister because of her job and because she has this job means no conscription.

When she learns that Kilorn Warren, her best friend, will be conscripted, she plans an escape and meets with a colleague who directs her to Farley, a captain of the Scarlet Guard, insurgents composed of Reds who want to bring equality between their people and the Silvers.

Farley demands a sum of money in exchange for Kilorn's escape. A plan to steal from a Silver with Gisa goes horribly wrong when a massacre occurs after the Scarlet Guard bombed the kingdom and Gisa's hand is shot and broken in the chaos, forcing Gisa to stop supporting her family and thus stopped her dream of being a seamstress. During her attempt to steal at a tavern, Mare meets with Cal, a handsome teen who listens to her problems and takes her home while also giving her money.

The next day, Mare is taken to the king's local residence and given a job as a servant and realizes that Cal is Tiberias Calore VI's son, Prince Tiberias Calore VII, who wants to protect her from conscription. During the Queenstrial, where Silver nobility compete for Cal's hand, Mare displays electrokinetic powers against Cal's eventual bride, Evangeline Samos.

She is captured, but because the king fears of an uprising should a Red be discovered to have supernatural powers, Mare is made a bride of Tiberias' second son, the shy Maven, given the name Mareena Titanos, and a cover story: the daughter of a Silver general who died on the battle field and was adopted by the Reds in the war zone.

Mare soon develops mutual feelings for Cal, her betrothed's brother and the future Silver king. She becomes increasingly guilty as the book progresses as she finds herself falling in love with Maven. ...

تاریخ نخستین خوانش: یازدهم ماه ژوئن سال 2016میلادی

عنوان: ملکه ی سرخ: کتاب نخست سری ملکه سرخ؛ نویسنده: ویکتوریا آویارد؛ مترجم: محمدصالح نورانی زاده؛ تندیس، 1394؛ 1394؛ در 514ص؛ شابک9786001821707؛ چاپ دوم 1396؛ در 512ص؛ چاپ سوم 1396؛ چاپ چهارم 1397؛ موضوع داستانهای خیال انگیز از نویسندگان ایالات متحده آمریکا - سده 21م

در دنیای «مر بارو» گروهی برگزیده هستند که خون‌شان نقره‌ ای، و دیگران که خونشان سرخ‌رنگ است؛ «مر» و خانواده‌ اش از خون سرخ‌ها هستند، سرخها سرنوشت‌شان خدمت به خون نقره‌ ای‌های برگزیده است؛ «مر» برای یاری کردن به خانواده‌ ی خویش، هر آن‌چه که بتواند می‌دزدد، اما وقتی بهترین دوستش به سربازی محکوم می‌شود؛ هر کاری که در توانش باشد، میخواهد انجام دهد، تا آزادی او را بخرد؛ سرنوشت، او را به قصر سلطنتی می‌کشاند؛ و در آن‌جا، «مر» در حضور پادشاه، و دیگر اشراف‌زادگان؛ متوجه می‌شود، که او توانایی‌هایی فرا‌انسانی داشته، ولی هرگزی از آن‌ها خبر نداشته است؛ اما مشکل این‌جاست که...؛ خون او سرخ است؛ پادشاه مجبورش می‌کند، «مر» خود را شاهدختی گمشده، معرفی کند؛ تا به نامزدی یکی از شاهزادگان درآید؛ او باید هرچه بیشتر در دنیای نقره‌ ای فرو رود، و کارهایی انجام دهد، که آغازگر رقصی مرگبار هستند؛ کارهای او شاهزاده‌ ها را، در برابر هم؛ و «مر» را در برابر احساسات خود قرار میدهد....؛

تاریخ بهنگام رسانی 20/07/1399هجری خورشیدی؛ 18/07/1400هجری خورشیدی؛ ا. شربیانی
Displaying 1 - 30 of 64,767 reviews