May contain minor spoilers!
The whole point of making a new blog was because I wanted to share my opinion on books, and first of all, my opinion on Red Queen, by Victoria Aveyard, which I just finished yesterday (and had started the day before yesterday. See my point, I couldn’t put it down.) It was published a few months ago and soon became a New York Times Bestseller, as you may have heard. If you’re part of any bookish community, you’ve probably heard of it. You have probably read it already, and I may even sound a little late. But finding books in English when you live in France is a pain in the ass, so here I am. I bought it the day before yesterday, and I have already finished it. That was worth it. And now I’m left with all the feels. And I need the next one like, right now.
The story, if you’re not familiar with it. It’s a dystopia, with touches of romance. The world is divided between two categories of people: the Reds and the Silvers. What’s the difference between them? The colour of their blood. The Reds have red blood, and the Silvers have, well silver blood. Not too hard to follow so far. But that’s not all. The Silvers also have incredible abilities (for example, controlling metal, or fire, or even people’s mind. And a lot of other stuff you will discover if you read the book.) And of course, the Silvers rule with these abilities, and appear to be unbeatable. The Reds, on the other hand, are poor and have no abilities. They can do nothing but obey the Silvers and live under their rule. At the age of 18, boys and girls are sent to war if they don’t have a job. The war has lasted for more than a century, and not a single Red sees the point of it. And yet, all they can do is send their children to death.
The heroine, of course, is a Red girl. Her name is Mare Barrow, she has three older brothers at war, and her 18th birthday is coming soon. She doesn’t have a job, and helps her family by stealing from other people (but she presents it in a much cooler way. And she doesn’t have much of a choice anyway). Her father is a war invalid, and her sister is learning embroideries. Mare is waiting for her 18th birthday and trying to find a way to escape the army. Except one day, the Silvers discover she has a special ability of her own, and a strong one at that. They turn her into a long lost Silver princess who was raised by a Red family, and decide she will marry the younger son of the king, who is about her age.
Except Mare is not going to accept that kind of fate. She has to deal with her newly found abilities, but more than that, she wants justice for the Reds.
I won’t tell you more, so if you haven’t read it yet, I advise you to pick it up right now!
The story is described by Starbust as a mix between The Hunger Games, The Selection, and Divergent, and I recognise it as so. You can find bits of it throughout the story, and bits of more. That’s what we are looking forward. At first, you may think the story is predictable. It’s true that a lot of elements are a bit “classical dystopian YA”. If you have read other books that enter this category, it may feel really familiar. But it has also its unique parts, bits that will blow your mind, things you were not expecting, plot twist after plot twist. And that what makes it brilliant. It is beautifully written and it captures your mind. That’s a book I couldn’t put down, and I hope you couldn’t (or won’t) put it down either. I gave it 5 starts without second thoughts.
Yes, if you only read the summary, it may sound like nothing much. But it is also so much more. It is not just a pale copy of already existing dystopian YA novels, though you can feel their influence. It is a whole new world on its own, and it is brilliant. To speak in fandom vocabulary, I’ll just say it has SO MANY FEELS and that is true. My heart was beating throughout the story, and I discovered every bit of it through the eyes of Mare, at the same rhythm, expecting the same things. I was in love with her family just like her. I was happy when she was happy, sad when she was sad, ashamed when she was ashamed, deceived when she was deceived. And that was beautiful. Now I cannot wait for the sequel because damn, it kept surprises until the very end, and I want to know what happens next. February, come faster please!