Thursday, October 22, 2015

[Review] Red Rising by Pierce Brown

Red Rising by Pierce Brown
Rating: 4.5 stars
Series: Red Rising #1
Version: Paperback
Release Date: January 28th 2014

Goodreads Synopsis:
The Earth is dying. 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. But the command school is a battlefield - and Darrow isn't the only student with an agenda.
This book evoked all the feelings in me. From start to finish, Pierce Brown had me hooked. Was it the violence? Maybe. Was it the characters? Perhaps. Was it the sarcastic dialogue? Could be the answer.

The answer on why I loved this book - it was that and so much more. I read Hunger Games, and Red Rising took the survival game trope to a whole new level, a spatial one (ah, my jokes). This time, the motivation to win and topple the hierarchy came before the game, before Darrow entered the world of the Golds. When he was just a simple Red. 

Red Rising is much more bloodier than Hunger Games, in my opinion. But it wasn't needlessly or excessively bloody. The maturity of this book was unreal, because all the violence and blood was written to match the atmosphere of Mars. The god of war himself would have been pleased with how tacticians were made in the Institute's game. And every character death had significance. Darrow, even with his ever-increasing ego, feels guilt and regret for all those who died. 

Speaking of Darrow, despite being carved into a Gold, isn't perfect. He may be cocky and overconfident, but it bites him in the butt on more than one occasion. The perfect example is with Cassius. I loved their friendship and brotherhood, and I was so sad when Cassius found out the truth. If only Darrow trusted Cassius. Now when Darrow messes up, he goes off and improves on it, learning from his enemies and making allies to conquer and win the game. He's unwavering in his goals to take down the Golds, except for the fact that he's actually becoming friends with some of them. Sevro and Mustang (that name reminds me of Roy Mustang) are great friends, and Darrow's interactions with the both of them? Priceless. They trust Darrow entirely with his leadership, so I wonder what happens if they learn the truth...? Or has Sevro figured it out? 

Sevro in general deserves an entire paragraph. He may not be the perfect looking Gold, but he's fantastic. He's self sufficient and so damn snarky. He doesn't take anyone's nonsense. Can they just make a Red Rising movie already so they can hopefully cast a perfect Sevro?

The dialogue in this book is great. It had me laughing out loud. I love sarcastic characters and snark all around (as I'm also a snarky blogger). When they referenced The Enders Game series by Orson Scott Card (I'm a big fan!), I loved this book even more (is that even possible?!) The comparison between Ender Wiggin and the Jackal - 10/10 dialogue.

So this kid is what? A predestined Alexander? A Ceasar? A Genghis? A Wiggin?" I ask. "This is slagging nonsense.

Another example of lovely dialogue mentioning trope/another book.

She groans. "I've become the maiden in distress, haven't I? Slag! I hate those girls."
Finally, the history and culture and hierarchy pyramid of the Colors. The unique naming (au = Gold, ag = Silver and that honestly makes a chemistry major's day). The designated roles for each color. The expansion of society into other parts of space. The use of Roman gods and goddesses and the similarities to Roman society. 

This book, I gorydamn loved this book. My only complaint was the slow pace. A couple hundred pages in, and Darrow still is trying to win this game? Or maybe this was relatable to how slow war can be... Hm. Regardless. I can't wait to read the sequel, Golden Son. I highly recommend this book! If you read it, what do you think of it? Did you like it? Hate it? Want to fangirl with me? Comment below!


  1. I love sarcasm, why haven't I read this yet? XD and I love Roy Mustang and FMAB all the fee eels arghhhhhh! Oh and also, I love the stars you use to rate your books they're so cute ^^

    1. You should read it!
      And yay you got the reference! FMAB is one of my faves :) And thank you! The stars are a new addition hehe. :)