red rising

Book Review: Red Rising

I can’t believe I was so late to the “Red Rising” train. What the heck was I doing with my life? What rock was I living under?!
Book Review: Red RisingRed Rising by Pierce Brown
Series: Red Rising #1
Published by Del Rey (Random House) on January 28th 2014
Genres: Science Fiction
Pages: 382
Format: Paperback
Buy on Amazon

"I live for the dream that my children will be born free," she says.

"That they will be what they like. That they will own the land their father gave them."

"I live for you," I say sadly.

Eo kisses my cheek. "Then you must live for more."

Darrow is a Red, a member of the lowest caste in the color-coded society of the future. Like his fellow Reds, he works all day, believing that he and his people are making the surface of Mars livable for future generations.
Yet he spends his life willingly, knowing that his blood and sweat will one day result in a better world for his children.

But Darrow and his kind have been betrayed.
(Synopsis ended here to prevent any spoiling! Click Goodreads link to see full synopsis.)

I would try to compose myself enough to write a coherent and thorough review, but really I’ve decided that I don’t want to write to. Here’s why:

When you start reading Red Rising you are introduced to a world that revolves around civilization of miners on Mars who are priming the land for the people on Earth who will be joining later. The world is fantastically dystopian, and Brown did an excellent job making the world plausibly bizarre. The great Roman-ish names, the fabulous lingo, and the jobs the civilians perform all combine to make an easily immersive world. But just when you think you’re getting familiar in that world, EVERYTHING CHANGES.
If you’ve only read the back of the book (and haven’t perused the web for a more thorough plot-line) you literally have no idea how the book is about to change.The first few chapters already fly by, but then suddenly these HUGE plot twists happen, and it really becomes an intense page-turner as you try to figure out how Pierce Brown could smash so many crazy things into so few pages. Everything you thought you knew about Darrow (he’s the protagonist, BTW) and his world is flipped on its head.The book ultimately becomes very Hunger Games-like (but frankly, much better so if you didn’t like the Hunger Game don’t let that sentence deter you). There’s so much nail-biting as you read about your favorite characters strategizing, succeeding, almost-dying, actually dying, failing, fighting, forming loyalties (that you know shouldn’t be happening! GAH!), and so much more!!!!

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It’s a very action-packed read with so much cleverness on Pierce Brown’s part. If I could describe this book in three words they would be: 1) Mars, 2) dystopia, and 3) caste (a caste system denoted by colors! yay rainbows!).


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  1. Dystopia used to be one of my favorite genres and it sounds like I would definitely appreciate the world Brown has created here, especially with all the twists – I love twists. I still have yet to check out this series but it seems like I should do so soon 🙂

    1. Yes it’s definitely time to jump on that band wagon! I haven’t read the second or third yet – but from what I’m seeing in the blogosphere people are really pleased with how the triology ends!

  2. I am so, so late to the Red Rising train. I’ve heard nothing but great things about it, so I’m not sure why I haven’t started it earlier! My boyfriend recently bought it for me as part of my graduation present, so I’ll finally be able to read it. Your review makes me even more excited to start the series! Great review! 🙂

    1. Haha, good to know I wasn’t the last person on Earth to read it! It was a really original story, and I am very excited to finish the trilogy (at some point… in the next few months… when my TBR gets a bit more under control XD). When you finally get around to it I’ll be curious to hear what you think.