I did some research upon completing The Red Queen. I’ve been hearing about this book (and the sequel to it) for awhile now, but have not heard about the author, Victoria Aveyard. I dutifully waited until I had 100% completed this book so that there would be no spoilers. To my (extremely) happy surprise, according to the Wikipedia article I read, a studio has bought the rights to the book. YAY!!!!!!! Let me say this, halfway through this book, I continually said, this would make a GREAT movie. Let’s just hope the adaptation does the book justice. I truly feel there are two types of people in the world.
- Book first movie second
- Movie first book second (or even not at all)
Which one are you? I TRY my hardest to read the book first, and watch the movie second. I’m disappointed with the movies about 60% of the time. Not too terrible, but if you’re as much a lover as books like I am, then you know EXACTLY what I’m talking about. So whatever studio has the rights to this book, please, whatever you do, don’t botch the movie. Listen to the author’s advice, and please listen to the fans.
Welcome to a book that introduces a caste system, where you are either a Red; the lowest of the low, poor, dirty, struggling, drafted for war, bleed red. Or a Silver; the elite, superhuman, well off, bleed silver. To be honest, I wasn’t sure there was enough diversity with having only two caste systems, however, Aveyard makes it work beautifully. Red’s are pretty standard to what I described, you either are useful in a trade, or you are drafted (conscripted) for war; whether you are male or female. The layers of the caste systems for the Silvers are just brilliant. Silvers are divided up into houses, and each house has different abilities such as manipulating metal, water, unbelievably strong, you can bend light, etc.
The reader is introduced to Mare Barrow immediately. You are shown the in’s and outs (mostly outs) of her feeble life from page one. You have a feel for what the Red’s go through in a day, being forced to watch public spectacles in the arenas as a reminder of how forceful the Silver’s are. Being forced to watch such events have their perks though; Red’s are able to have additional electricity ration papers to use. Mare is not useful, but Mare has developed a useful habit. Due to her poor circumstances she tries to make the most out of a poor situation by being a pickpocket. Although not the most ideal job, it allows herself and her family to get by. It also bides her time before her 18th birthday, before she is drafted for the war.
Predictably speaking, the reader can possibly see where Mare’s wayward ways are going to lead her. Mare strolls into a bar a pickpockets the wrong person, Cal. Although Mare doesn’t see it (yet), Cal is different. He’s not confrontational when he catches Mare, instead he takes pity on her, and gives her the money she was about to steal. Perplexed, Mare questions him, but continues on with her night.
Right about here is when I really started to “form a relationship” (that’s not weird, right?) with Mare; mainly because she’s so sassy and sarcastic, I literally laughed out loud at some of her responses. Mare receives a rude awakening when she has a palace servent, along with two guards summon her to the palace. Mare, being brought up around misery, assumes she’s as good as dead for something she’s done. To her surprise, she realizes that someone has put in a word for her to work from the palace; thus deeming her useful, she no longer needs to fear about going to war. Immediately Mare is given servants clothes, and told she must serve the Silver Houses attending Queenstrial; a “talent show” of sorts to showcase girl’s talents for the possible choosing of upcoming queen. While serving at Queenstrial, Mare sees a familiar face in the crowd, Cal, sitting with the King and Queen. Flabbergasted, Mare literally falls into an accident that changes the entire course of the book.
I feel as though I need to stop the review here; only because I feel as though I can get caught up and give vital scenes away. I will say this. This story starts as a two sided coin; the Reds and the Silvers. Mare changes things and brings a third side to the coin. If you enjoy reading young adult, dystopia societies, a true heroin, superhuman powers, well developed characters, an amazing plot, a bit of romance, a lot of treachery, and so much more, then I HIGHLY reccomend this book. This was a great “quick read”, a great beach book (what book WOUDN’T you love reading down at the beach?!) and overall, just a GOOD BOOK! My advice for Victoria Aveyard; please, keep doing what you’re doing. In a world saturated with YA dystopian societies, yours stands out. I was hesitant first picking up this book, however was quickly drawn in with the characters, and then deeper into the world. Aveyard was definitely born to write, you can tell her passion in this book, I am even more excited to read her upcoming books. I will say this though, I missed a book signing by her by one day! I’m extremely bummed! But hopefully, there will be another book signing by her in the near future.
Red Queen gets 5 out of 5 stars!!!!!