Sunday 29 March 2015

Readers Review: Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

The poverty stricken Reds are commoners, living under the rule of the Silvers, elite warriors with god-like powers.
To Mare Barrow, a 17-year-old Red girl from The Stilts, it looks like nothing will ever change.
Mare finds herself working in the Silver Palace, at the centre of
those she hates the most. She quickly discovers that, despite her red blood, she possesses a deadly power of her own. One that threatens to destroy Silver control.
But power is a dangerous game. And in this world divided by blood, who will win?

Virginie's review 3 of 5 stars

I had read a lot of positive reviews on this debut novel and was really looking forward to reading it. To a fault maybe, my expectations were raised by the hype.

I will tell you the truth about how I feel about it. It started with a bang, but in my opinion did not quite deliver.

Anyone who will read this book will have this strange feeling of reading “Xmen” meets “Selection” (the latter by Kiera Cass). This in itself is quite an original setting and sets out the mood for an interesting read.

The main flaw in the novel for me, resides with Mare Barrow, the main character. She first comes across as a strong female figure, victim of her circumstances and living in a world where her freedoms are curtailed by a government who sees itself as almighty. A government whose claim to power is solely based on the following stance: Silver blood people are gifted with extraordinary abilities whereas the red blood population is not and therefore is designed to serve.

Mare sees no other choice but becoming an expert thief to support her loved ones.

Everything changes when she is summoned to work for the royal family and in an extraordinary turn of event, we see her, a Red, coming into her powers. She is now bestowed with the ability to generate and control electricity.

The problem is, in my view, this gift had a flip side! Mare suddenly became stupid and naïve.

This development in Mare’s character and personality is in total contrast with the strong young woman we are first introduced to. She basically gains new powers, falls in love (one minute with one brother and with the other the next) and has a dubious moral compass which stretches from committing petty theft to justifying terrorism. I will give you that she was only following the crowd and was led by her crush on the younger Prince. But that is exactly my point, she completely loses her wits.

The novel itself is written in a fast pace and this will keep you turning the pages, however if you are anything like me you will quickly guess the events about to unfold.

On a positive note, I do think the concept is original and daring and has a lot to offer and I am looking forward to seeing the story develop in the upcoming instalments.

Please do not let my review stop you from picking up this read. You may just have a different view.

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