Red Queen Review

Title: Red Queen
Author: Victoria Aveyard
Genre: Fantasy
Publisher: Orion

Spoilers in white. Highlight to read.

Blurb: (from goodreads)  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 center 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?

Me: Fascinating concept, and worth the hype. 

The Ups: Fantasy has a reputation for being over-the-top, or unreasonably foolish, but this book was very intriguing. The concept of "godly" figures having silver blood and commoners having red blood was fascinating. I felt like it also had to do with the fact that you couldn't tell who was who right from appearance, it was the blood and the hidden power with it that changed where a person was classified. The world that Mare lived in seemed very real to me, and didn't seem unreasonable. 
The imagery and the descriptive depiction of the world was awesome. I could clearly imagine the Silver Palace, and the Stilts, where the Reds lived. Everything inside the world was very well done. 
I loved the supporting characters. Especially Julian. They made the book and the palace seem even more real and alive. They all had their back stories, and to be honest I think I could have read an entire book just as easily about the King's life, or the Queen's.
The love triangle...square (?) was well done. It wasn't so much a "love" square because it was manipulative, and strategic...I'll shut up before I give away too much. 
Anyway, it was generally very smooth and the pacing and the flow was really nice. It kept me interested throughout the entire time. 

The Downs: Okay well first of all...Mare. Judging that she is a heroine in a fantasy setting who kills and defeats people, I liked her. (I have developed a dislike for heroines in sci-fi/fantasy situations because they tend to be perfect and so self-doubting to the point of annoyance, now there are many exceptions, and I'm glad Mare joined the exceptions group and not the first) However, she confused me. What she as a character wanted and was aiming for changed throughout the book. Sometimes it felt like she truly wanted the "greater good" and other times it felt like she didn't care about that at all. 
Okay now for the spoilers...
I saw it coming. I don't understand why people are freaking out about this ending because for me it was incredibly obvious. It seems like everyone else who read it was like...
and I'm over here like...

I was suspicious of Maven from the start. There is no way, that he, a Silver, could find the freedom and equality of Reds so important. He is, after all, his mother's son. While I saw it coming, it was a bit disappointing. I wish it hadn't had happened because Mare+Maven was starting to grow on me. 

Overall: A really unique fantasy with an amazingly crafted world.

Rating: 4 kisses! 

Have you read this book? Do you think it is worth the hype? 


  1. AGREED! I saw it coming too! Looking back, I feel like this book didn't deserve that much hype. It has so many elements of other books in it. It's like a combination of Mockingjay, Red Rising, and Game of Thrones (with betrayal).

  2. I personally don't feel like it deserved its hype -- it didn't feel like it contributed anything new to the YA fantasy genre. And honestly, Mare annoyed me a lot! I couldn't really get on board with her as a character. I think I'll still check the coming books out from the library, though, instead of buying them. Great review, Kate!