book review

Book Review: Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

With this last review the Teen Book Challenge is over.

I’m not going to lie, at first it was easy but then life started to get in the way (work, eating, sleeping and a really bad cold) and the last two days were tough.

I’m glad that I did it. Not going to do it for a while. In this though you all gave wonderful suggestions so I have more books to review and I am looking forward to them.
The last book that I chose was Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard. Imagine that your whole life and its future is based on the color of your blood. If your blood is silver you are treated like a God. You have riches, your life is valued and you have powers.
Your powers are based on the house that you descend from. You could control the plants around you, have the power to control minds or the power to control fire.
The Silvers are the Kings and Queens of the lands. They are the Generals of the armies, they own the factories that produce the weapons and they are the reason for the coming revolution.
The source of the revolution? The people that have been kept under their boots. The people that they have sent to fight a pointless war for over one hundred years. The people who many not dare to speak in their presence.
If your blood is red, you are bound to a life of servitude. If you do not have a job or are apprenticed to learn a trade, that is of use to the kingdom, at the age of seventeen you are sent to fight in the war.
After watching three older brothers go off to war, Mare Barrow is awaiting her turn. She doesn’t have a skill that is useful to the kingdom. She is however, an exceptional pick pocket and uses this skill to help provide for her starving family.
The red blooded hate the silvers. The silvers use their powers to intimidate the reds. With regular battles held in small coliseum-like structures that are built in all the towns, the silvers battle for bragging rights, while the reds are forced to watch the display of power.
Silver blood always is split, however, there are healers on hand to make sure that no silver dies. Silvers are precious to each other. Whether they get along or not, the houses all see that they are superior to the reds.
After one such fight, Mare’s life takes a turn for the worse. Mare’s best friend, Kilorn, loses his apprenticeship right before his seventeenth birthday. Mare is desperate to keep her friend and save herself from the front lines as well. To get the money that she needs to pay their way to freedom, Mare does what she knows best. Pickpocket.
Finding a tavern and parking herself in the shadows, Mare starts to fill her pockets with coin from the drunkards that are leaving after a night of drink. But as Mare gets bolder with her stealing, she is caught by someone quite out of place.
This stranger will set out a series of events that will her change her life forever and blur the lines between the bloodlines.
I have to say the first few chapters of this book were slow moving for me. It wasn’t until I got a little farther in the book that I started to connect with the characters enough to want to find out what happens next.
The plights of the red bloods are that of any medieval kingdom, with the royals living like the silvers and the reds like that of the serfs.
This book is blurry on the time line on when it takes place, however they do have security cameras and vehicles so it could be present. With the war waging on for over one hundred years, the other technology that we use today could have been eradicated.
Red Queen is the first book with Queen Song coming out September 2015.
I would compare this to The Young Elites by Marie Lu. The powers that are present in both books have many similarities. For example the leader in the Young Elites, and the King and his sons in Red Queen, all have the ability to control fire. Both books using fire as the symbol of true power.
I will continue on with this series when the next book comes out. I’m glad that I did power through the start and saw the big picture of the story. I always give books sixty pages to grab my attention before I stop reading it. This one did cut it close getting started, however, it did not disappoint for the rest of the book.
I will recommend this as read because it may have been slow to start, but it finished strong.