Red Queen is dystopian/fantasy novel written by Victoria Aveyard. It follows Mare Barrow, a young woman who pickpockets for a living and is from the lower class area of her society called the Silts. She lives in a world divided into two classes, people with Silver blood and people with Red. The Silvers are the ruling elites who have the gift of superpowers. The Reds are the impoverished, poor, unpowered common folk, who are sent off to war to fight for the Silvers and barely have any rights. Mare is a Red. After meeting a strange young man who she attempted to pickpocket, she finds herself working as a servant in the King’s summer home nearby. During the Queenstrial, a competition in which possible future queens (Silvers) show off their powers to the royals, Mare accidentally falls into the electric field guarding the arena while attempting to serve an upper-class Silver.
However, instead of disintegrating into tiny bits, Mare survives, only to realize that she is a Red with the the powers of a Silver. Now she has to navigate the volatile lifestyle of pretending that you are a Silver (when you are in fact, a Red) while being in the spotlight of someone who is betrothed to a prince.
- great plot twist at the end
- lots of interesting world-building
- interesting take on how to overcome you oppressors (is terrorism right if it is for the right reasons?)
- interesting commentary on social class
- compelling characters with lots of additional backstory for most of the characters that you have to infer to totally figure it all out
- great villain and mysteries that have to be uncovered
- it’s concept and premise suffers from feeling unorginal
- very similar to the YA novel trope of a young woman standing up against and starting a revolution against a corrupt and evil government (however, this book makes that government more human by inspecting them up close and personal)
My Rating: 8.5/10
In conclusion, go out and read it! Although it sometimes uses some overused tropes, it’s still a compelling novel with fresh elements to bring to the table.
If you have read Red Queen, did you like it? And if you have not, are you interested in reading it now?