Red Queen (Red Queen Trilogy #1)
by Victoria Aveyard
I recieved a free copy from the publishers via Edelweiss.
Mare Barrow’s world is divided by blood—those with red and those with silver. Mare and her family are lowly Reds, destined to serve the Silver elite whose supernatural abilities make them nearly gods. Mare steals what she can to help her family survive, but when her best friend is conscripted into the army she gambles everything to win his freedom. A twist of fate leads her to the royal palace itself, where, in front of the king and all his nobles, she discovers a power of her own—an ability she didn’t know she had. Except … her blood is Red.
To hide this impossibility, the king forces her into the role of a lost Silver princess and betroths her to one of his own sons. As Mare is drawn further into the Silver world, she risks her new position to aid the Scarlet Guard—the leaders of a Red rebellion. Her actions put into motion a deadly and violent dance, pitting prince against prince—and Mare against her own heart.
From debut author Victoria Aveyard comes a lush, vivid fantasy series where loyalty and desire can tear you apart and the only certainty is betrayal.
First Impressions: I was going to give this 4 stars, but the last 20% or so was intense.
+ Fabulous world building.
+ Great character development and character interaction.
+ Some pretty mindblowing twists.
+ Some rather attractive princes.
+ Mare is an absoulutely fearsome female protagonist.
+ One of the best high fantasy books I’ve ever read.
Review: It’s not hard to see how Red Queen is one of the most highly anticipated novels of 2015. Red Queen is a fantastic debut YA, high fantasy and doesn’t fail to astound and capture the reader.
Mare Barrow is a Red - that’s the colour of her blood - and the Reds are meant to serve the Silver because the Reds are considered inferior and the Silvers have supernatural powers. Mare is a pickpocket and uses her skill to help support her family, but when her lifelong friend, Kilorn is conscripted into the army, a fate that she would soon share, Mare gambles away everything in order to win his freedom. When she discovers that she has powers but her blood is still Red, Mare ends up as a long lost Silver princess and betrothed to one of the King’s son. As Mare is dragged deeper into the Silver’s world, she becomes a pawn in a vicious and vengeful game.
Red Queen was exceptional, and is one of the best YA high fantasy novels I’ve read. The world-building in Victoria Aveyard’s debut is fabulous and vivid, and somehow manages to be modern whilst retaining its high fantasy element.
There are some great characters, with some fantastic character development and character interaction throughout the novel. Mare is an admirable heroine who is brave, intelligent yet vulnerable at the same time. The two princes, Maven and Cal, were each attractive and alluring in their own way. The villain, The Queen, is interesting and the members of the Scarlet Guard are exciting.
The plot was my favourite part of Red Queen and there are some pretty big twists that I didn’t see coming (but reading some reviews on GR, some say they did), and I was completely gobsmacked by the turn of events. A fast paced novel with twists and turns and suspense.
I highly recommend, particularly if you are a fan of high fantasy. RATING: ★★★★★ pre order on Book Depository