Read Red Rising by Pierce Brown Online

red-rising

"I live for the dream that my children will be born free," she says. "That they will be what they like. That they will own the land their father gave them.""I live for you," I say sadly.Eo kisses my cheek. "Then you must live for more."Darrow is a Red, a member of the lowest caste in the color-coded society of the future. Like his fellow Reds, he works all day, believing t"I live for the dream that my children will be born free," she says. "That they will be what they like. That they will own the land their father gave them.""I live for you," I say sadly.Eo kisses my cheek. "Then you must live for more."Darrow is a Red, a member of the lowest caste in the color-coded society of the future. Like his fellow Reds, he works all day, believing that he and his people are making the surface of Mars livable for future generations.Yet he spends his life willingly, knowing that his blood and sweat will one day result in a better world for his children.But Darrow and his kind have been betrayed. Soon he discovers that humanity already reached the surface generations ago. Vast cities and sprawling parks spread across the planet. Darrow—and Reds like him—are nothing more than slaves to a decadent ruling class.Inspired by a longing for justice, and driven by the memory of lost love, Darrow sacrifices everything to infiltrate the legendary Institute, a proving ground for the dominant Gold caste, where the next generation of humanity's overlords struggle for power. He will be forced to compete for his life and the very future of civilization against the best and most brutal of Society's ruling class. There, he will stop at nothing to bring down his enemies... even if it means he has to become one of them to do so....

Title : Red Rising
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780345539786
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 382 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Red Rising Reviews

  • Khanh (the meanie)
    2019-01-26 17:58

    Actual rating: 2.5“Darrow. Come here. Come.” He grabs my shoulder and pulls me in. “Others may have failed. But you’ll be different, Darrow. I feel it in my bones.”I'm sorry, was I supposed to feel something?I suppose boredom is a feeling. Not a single tear was shed. Not for a single instance was a single emotion heightened. It was by no means a bad book, but the message got lost in the telling, and there is just. So. Much. Telling. The writing is fantastic, but the plot just didn't work for me. I was bored out of my mind for much of the book.This book tries to be grand. It tries really, really hard to make a lofty, awe-inspiring political message. It read like a rousing Communist propaganda, the sort that would get a crowd of common men fired up, ready to launch an uprising to bring down the almighty ruling class that has long oppressed them.Wait, this book is trying to make a political message? Something about freeing the oppressed? What the fuck? No. It is a story about how Darrow is better than everyone else at everything because he is The One. His life is saved by the act of God, or shall I say, the act of deus ex fucking machina every single fucking time.It wants to be the story of a common laborer, a sheep, one who is content with his hard-working life, who is proud of the products of his toil because it supposedly means something. Darrow is the Everyman, the ordinary worker, the common man to whom we all can relate! Not.If Darrow were a female, I would not hesitate for one millisecond to slap a "Mary Sue" label on him. He is bloodydamn perfect. An Everyman, he is not. The common man, he is not. Average, he is most definitely not. Fine, Darrow is meant to be perfect because he's the SYMBOL OF HIS PEOPLE. He's so fucking special. He was plucked from the mires of obscurity to save his people.His perfection raises a lot of question, and this book left me largely unsatisfied.The Bad:Darrow: The main character is Darrow, and he is so perfect as to be improbable, unrealistic, and completely unbelievable.Meet Darrow.He is a 16-year old worker. He toils. A life of hardship is all he has ever known. He is a Red, the lowest social class, the dregs of society. He is an uneducated minor, and a miner (I make no apologies for the pun, I've been waiting to ues that one for ages). As the mad scientist who has been told to turn Darrow into a Gold says..."Say we make his body perfect, there’s still one problem: we cannot make him smarter. One cannot make a mouse a lion.”That's right. Darrow is not stupid, but he is uneducated. He has not had the privilege of a life's worth of highly selective education. His body is hard, strong, but unhoned in war.And he dares compete against the Golds, the highest echelon of Society. The strongest, the most powerful, the most intelligent.Only Darrow dares. And he succeeds beyond anyone's wildest imagination. He is so fucking perfect, and I hate him for it. Despite a complete lack of education, he is brilliant. Just fucking brilliant.I don’t know the math, but I know the pattern. I solve it and four more puzzles, then it changes once more in my hands, becoming a circle. Mickey’s eyes widen. I complete the circle’s puzzles and then toss him back the device. He stares at my hands while working his own twelve fingers.“Impossible,” he murmurs.He succeeds at everything. Lack of knowledge? Fuck that shit, just drink a fucking INTELLIGENCE TONIC AND BOOM! INSTANT GENIUS.Before I sleep, I drink a tonic laden with processing enhancers and speed-listen to The Colors, The Iliad, Ulysses, Metamorphosis, the Theban plays, The Draconic Labels, and restricted works like The Count of Monte Cristo, Lord of the Flies, Lady Casterly’s Penance, 1984, and The Great Gatsby. I wake knowing three thousand years of literature and legal code and history.Where was that stuff when I was cramming for my finals in school? :|Which begs the question, if Darrow can be artificially enhanced like that, why hasn't everyone else? What makes Darrow so special that his artificial physical and mental enhancements haven't been used to make the actual Golds better than they are?It doesn't work.The Plot: It just plods on, and on, and on. There was not a whole lot of bad in this book except for the fact that the message got lost along the way, and it was so incredibly boring. My friends promised me it would get better at the 15% mark. They promised me it would get better at the 30% mark. I just kept waiting, and waiting, and waiting, and things never really inproved. The first 15% of the book had my head spinning as we are introduced to the immensely boring and confusing world building. The next 20% was better, because hey! Darrow got ripped apart and put back together. The rest of the book was like, The Hunger Games in that you pitch a ton of elite students together in to a Lord of the Flies scenario until one emerges, victorious.Maybe. The message got somewhat lost in between the whole "Hunger Game" survival scenario at a leadership training school, the Insitute.My name, three bars beside it now, floats nearer the Primus hand.Cassius has risen too.But there can be only one Primus.There's the hardship of survival, the fight to be the victor...the, um, battle against pimples?People remain hungry because we’ve yet to build a fire in the castle, and hygiene is quickly forgotten when two of our girls are snatched up by Ceres horsemen as they bathe in the river just beneath our gate. The Golds are confused when even their fine pores begin clogging and they gain pimples.Seriously, I can't even tell you what the latter 25% of the book was about because it was such a confusing, boring mess.The Good:The Setting: I thought this was well done, despite the massive amount of infodumping without definition. If you want sci-fi, you got it. The reader is instantly immersed into the world on Mars, the underground, the mining world.There is a tremendous amount of terms that the reader doesn't know at first. The good is that the book doesn't try to spoon-feed its readers. The bad is that OH MY GOD SO MANY TERMS WHAT THE HELL DOES IT ALL MEAN?! The first 10% of the book had my head in a tailspin.Frysuit, helldiver, Tinpots, clawDrill, scanCrew, headTalk, randomlyCapitalizedWords, etc. It was tremendously confusing.The good is that the setting is eventually explained. The system of castes on Mars based on colors is explained, and about damn time, too.The Gray soldiers prowl the cities ensuring order, ensuring obedience to the hierarchy. The Whites arbitrate their justice and push their philosophy. Pinks pleasure and serve in highColor homes. Silvers count and manipulate currency and logistics. Yellows study the medicines and sciences. Greens develop technology. Blues navigate the stars. Coppers run the bureaucracy. Every Color has a purpose. Every Color props up the Golds.The technology is slowly revealed to us. The reader has to WORK in order to understand the setting. I like that the background of the book is incorporated into the story, there is no stupid "Once Upon a Time blah blah blah" shit type of dystopian background building here.The fact that the book takes such an easy view of randomly killing off its elite citizens was well-explained, too. I usually take offense at random killing of your best and brightest, but I have to admit that this book gave me an adequate explanation.“And you may think it a waste of good Golds, but you’re an idiot if you think fifty children make a dent in our numbers. There are more than one million Golds on Mars. More than one hundred million in the Solar System. Not all get to be Peerless Scarred, though, eh?Darrow's Physical Transformation: My Fair Lady to the fucking EXTREME, man. Darrow is a Red. He is trying to be a Gold, in order to achieve that, he has to undergo a very far-out sci-fi transformation process. Bones are rebuilt. Skin is peeled off. Synapses are formed. There is a TON of blood and pain. It is fucking awesome.The agony is beyond language or comprehension. I watch videos of it afterwards to distract me from the residual pain. He uses a vibroScalpel to slice the flesh of my thigh down the middle. He parts my muscle and skin with clamps to expose the bones of my legs. Then he peels off layers of the bone with a bonepeeler and paints new layers with his improved-bone recipe.“Someone has to dot God’s i’s.”The Political Message: This is meant to be a political parable, and it does it quite well. I could select one of a thousand sentences in this book and plaster it onto a Communist propaganda where it would fit in place perfectly. The political message in this book is loud, clear, and well done. I said this was a rousing book, and it was. The message of inequality is so clear here. The struggles of the Reds are well-depicted. You can clearly see the injustice, the betrayal, the deceit, and I understand the hunger that Darrow felt and his desperation to make things right for his people.“This is our bloodydamn planet.”“Through sweat and toil it was made so,” he agrees.“Then what will it take to take it back?”“Blood.”An ambitious book, and one that many of my friends have loved.It just didn't do the job for me.

  • Navessa
    2019-01-23 20:23

    *I received this ARC in exchange for an honest review and honestly? I BLOODYDAMN LOVED IT*You think you’ve read a dystopian book? Quit lying to yourself. That was teenage angst wrapped in a shiny new package, cashing in on the popularity of this genre.You think you’ve read about evil futuristic regimes? Nope, those were one dimensional villains that will look cartoony compared the assholes in this book.You think you’ve seen hurt and suffering and despair and heartache? You’ve seen nothing.You think you’ve seen to the very depths of the depravity mankind is capable of? YOU’VE SEEN NOTHING. I won’t call this book “The Next Hunger Games” and nor should anyone else, in my opinion. But I’m sure some degenerate in a PR office will think it’s a great idea. My advice? Don’t listen to that douchebag. To do so would be insulting to Red Rising. Don’t get me wrong, I loved The Hunger Games and there are a few parallels between that series and this book. Even so, this book shouldn’t be compared to anything. This book is what it is and it stands alone on a desolate field surrounded by the burning embers of its lessers because this book is just…more. It’s harder, darker, more emotional, more horrific, more…everything. Pierce Brown, how the hell do you expect me to read something else after this? Or sit around and wait for the next installment? Are you writing it? Is it already done? Is it half done? Are you in need of an amateur editor??? I’m the girl for the job! Pick me! MEEEEEE!!!!FYI, my version of editing will be to drool over whatever you produce and provide zero constructive feedback while demanding you write faster and trying to hide the intensity and frequency of my eye twitches. Also, there may be threats involving tofu for “motivational” purposes.You probably want to know what it’s about, right? Okay, I’ll try to settle down.The story takes place on Mars, inside a futuristic colony. Our main character, Darrow, is the youngest Helldiver in memory and he operates a massive and massively complicated drill-like piece of machinery deep within the sulfurous bowels of the planet. He’s a Red, the caste of people relegated to living like moles.When we meet him, he’s under the impression that he and all of his caste are digging Helium3 so that one day the surface above will be hospitable for future generations. Even though he’s just sixteen, he’s married and madly in love with his equally young bride, Eo. Hearing about her through his perspective, you understand why. She’s vibrant and beautiful and charming and witty and fierce, the sunshine that lights up their subterranean world. Because the book blurb mentions this, I don’t feel like I’m spoiling anything by saying that when she dies, a little piece of you may die too, drained away with the tears that will spill from your eyes. What will bubble up to fill the gap it leaves behind is a primeval part of yourself, made of vengeance and anger. This monstrous little piece of you is further fueled by the lies the authorities tell the Reds, by the inequality and the forced brutality you're made to bear witness to. By the time you reach the middle of the book you may find that savage part of you has taken over and that you’ve hate-morphed into a ten foot tall, scale-covered ragebeast armed with razor teeth and three inch claws made for rending the flesh of the Golds, the highest caste and the perpetrators of all these crimes. Don’t be alarmed, it happened to me too. From the mines you watch Darrow rise, discover the truth of life on Mars, take his first shell-shocked steps on a city street and transform into something nearly as monstrous as your ragebeast. And you’re with him all the way, rooting him on, cheering his brilliance and his blood thirst. I absolutely loved his character, loved how his mind worked. And you know what else I loved about him? He’s not perfect. He’s not some born leader. He does horrific things, makes bad choices and hard decisions. But he learns from his mistakes, becomes better, stronger, smarter. Surrounding him is a support cast of miscreants, sycophants, psychopaths, feral children, government men who think themselves gods and the rebel leaders who wait to rise up against them. None of them are one dimensional. All of them pulled some sort of emotion from me, whether it was love or hate or amusement or pity. Pair these characters with the sweeping backdrop of a war whose participants have forgotten it is a game and you have one brutal and gorydamn epic novel. This book is a stark foray into survival and society, into the heart of human darkness and the height of its heroism. One part dystopian, one part sci-fi and one part epic war fantasy, it transcends a conventional genre and enters the realms of AMAZEBALLS. READ IT. This review can also be found at The Alliterates.

  • Rick Riordan
    2019-02-05 16:23

    (Minor spoilers follow) Red Rising introduces us to Darrow, a sixteen-year-old miner who toils deep in the mines of Mars a few hundred years in the future. In Darrow's world, humanity has spread across the solar system, and has been organized into a strict caste system of colors, with Gold at the top and Red at the bottom. Darrow is a Red, but he is making the most of his hard life in the mines. He is good at his work. He has a beautiful wife Eo (they get married young and die young down in the mines) and though the Reds live in abject poverty, they are a proud tough clan. They appreciate songs and drink and family. They also hold on to the idea that they are sacrificing for the good of humanity at large. They have been told that they are pioneers on Mars, making the planet habitable through their hard lives mining helium-3, and some day the surface of the planet will be able to support life thanks to their efforts. Some day, the other colors will join them on Mars.Then Darrow's life is shattered when he and his wife are arrested for trespassing in a garden that is restricted to the Bronze administrators. Soon Darrow finds himself alone, bereft and marked for execution. He is plucked from the jaws of death by a resistance group known as the Sons of Ares, who show him the Big Lie of his existence: the surface of Mars is actually already inhabited. The other colors have formed great cities, and are allowing the Reds to keep toiling as slaves while the Golds and their minion classes live lives of relative ease. The Sons of Ares have a plan for Darrow: because of his dexterity, constitution and quick mind, he is just the right double agent they need. Using advanced genetic manipulation, they will make Darrow a Gold and send him to infiltrate the Institute, the training academy which produces all the top leaders of the Society that controls the solar system. Darrow's job is to rise as high as he can within the Gold ranks so he can assist the Sons of Ares in their eventual revolution. The only problem: Darrow first has to survive the Institute.I found Red Rising absolutely compelling. I tore through the book and am anxious to read the next two books in the trilogy. You will recognize many ingredients from other YA/fantasy series. The tone, especially at first, reminded me of Patrick Ness' The Knife of Never Letting Go. The big discovery of society's true nature was reminiscent of the Matrix. The caste system is like Divergent. The Institute sorts its students into houses like Harry Potter. The cutthroat competitions among the Golds is very like The Hunger Games. And the nature of the training is described as a year-long deadly game of capture-the-flag, in which the houses (all named after Roman gods) fight one another while the proctors float about them and watch from a levitating mountain called Olympus. That, too, seemed oddly familiar. And yet Red Rising is more than the sum of its parts. Pierce Brown manages to craft all these elements into something new, something believable and exciting. I couldn't help getting swept away in Darrow's story as we follow him from the lowly life of a miner to the very heights of Olympus (literally), wondering along the way if his secret identity will be discovered, or if he will 'go Gold' and forget his rebel benefactors and his mission. The book is satisfying in itself, but it leaves a lot of tantalizing questions for the second volume, which I have already started reading. If you like YA adventures, like the ones mentioned above, this is definitely a book you should check out!

  • Patrick
    2019-02-06 16:58

    I picked up Red Rising because a *lot* of the people at Worldbuilders were goofy over the books, and, by extension, the author Pierce Brown.Earlier this year, when I went to a convention where he was going to be in attendance, the Worldbuilders team told me that if I didn't capture Pierce like a Pokemon and bring him back to the office with me, I shouldn't bother coming home at all....I got to hang out with Pierce there, and he was irritatingly polite, witty, and charming. That, combined with the degree of slavering fanaticism the Worldbuilders team was showing him, convinced me that I should really give the books a try.And I wasn't disappointed. They're good. In fact I'd go so far as to call them great books.I suspect a lot of people compare them to Hunger Games, but I think that's disservice to he books. Red Rising has a much deeper, richer world, more in-depth characterization, and a more complex plot.That said, if you *liked* Hunger Games but you wanted more of those things, this book would probably make you happy as a pig with six tits. (Yeah. I don't know what that means. I mean, pigs already have six. But I'm honestly curious if people actually read these reviews of mine all the way through. So this is an experiment of sorts to see who is paying attention.)So yeah. Good characters. Good Worldbuilding. Good Action. Good book. Worth your time.

  • Emily May
    2019-01-30 22:26

    “I am the Reaper and death is my shadow.” 2 1/2 stars. Red Rising isn't really a bad book - 2.5 stars still means halfway between "it was ok" and "I liked it", after all. And many other reviews will tell you how amazing most people found it, but I struggled to locate the magic that so many other people seem to have found within its pages. Red Rising is considered and marketed as dystopian/sci-fi, which technically it is, but it reads with a dense wordiness that is reminiscent of high fantasy novels. This fact will only be a negative for some readers. It has the same high level of technical term usage, lengthy descriptions and a slow, plodding plot that has made me put aside many fantasy favourites. Oh, and then there's Darrow. Khanh's description of him is hilarious and spot on, but I cannot write this review without adding something myself about why he is a Gary Stu of epic proportions. The guy is absolutely perfect in that despairingly average way that seems to be the defining factor of YA heroes and heroines. He gets everything right, he is faultless, the story is built up around him being so good that he's able to do what everyone else cannot. And yet, he's also your average Joe in a way that I suppose is meant to make us readers relate to him.Unfortunately, he felt like a cardboard cutout. Khanh was right, he would make a fantastic face of a revolution, but in terms of characters I can get behind, root for and care about... he wasn't doing it for me.The reason this book does work is the real sense of tension, nastiness and drama. It's easy to get caught up in the atmosphere of the story. You get the feeling throughout that the author isn't afraid to rip your heart out, shred it, and stand laughing amid the fallen pieces. Which enabled me to read on with some interest, despite the slow-moving plot. While there were a number of things I enjoyed, this book never managed to cross the line between "not bad" and "actually good" in my mind. Perhaps it was just too dense and slow-moving, or perhaps Darrow ruined my enjoyment... but I am surprised to see quite so many five star reviews.One final thing I want to say is about the language. Everyone seems to love it. I have yet to read a review where the language hasn't been praised as well-written, emotive, beautiful, powerful... take your pick. But I found all the political language incredibly melodramatic. “You do not follow me because I am the strongest. Pax is. You do not follow me because I am the brightest. Mustang is. You follow me because you do not know where you are going. I do.” There was something so contrived, even scripted, about it. You know in kids' films when it gets to the climax and it looks like the bad guys are going to win? Then the hero makes a big emotional, dramatic speech about why they're going to beat the bad guys with epic music playing in the background? This whole book felt a bit like one of those speeches. Like preachy political propaganda, spoken on a clifftop with sword pointed in the air. It made me roll my eyes more often than it made me feel inspired. Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Youtube | Pinterest

  • Kat O'Keeffe
    2019-01-25 22:01

    This was a little bit difficult for me to get into--lots of world building and unique vocab--but once I settled into the story, I started to really enjoy it! I definitely get the comparison to The Hunger Games, and thought it also felt similar to Divergent and even The Son of Neptune at times, but it's still very different and original. I didn't really connect emotionally to the main character, but I did still like watching his journey. Gritty and intense and very entertaining! A strong start to this trilogy. Will definitely be continuing with Golden Son ASAP!Check out my booktalk for more of my thoughts - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NxwS2...

  • Val ⚓️ ShamelessBitchySKANKY ⚓️ Steamy Reads
    2019-02-13 17:09

    BIGGGGGG DNFHoly effing hell, people.Or should. I say. Holy. Effing. Helldiver. All I can say is...Seriously though, I was expecting some uber Sci-Fi awesomeness here and I feel like I got shafted with some broke ass YA that took itself waaaaaaay too seriously without having any actual sincerity. There is NO way I could have been reading the same book as everyone else. That's gotta be it. My local library must have accidentally supplied me with the staccato-speak, melodramatic version of this thing instead of the real one......although I had a sneaking suspicion this book and I were not meant to be when I cracked this bad boy open and saw these two nuggets of brilliance in the dedication/acknowledgement sections:"To Father, who taught me to walk."...or trying to be "ironic."Followed by this little ditty:"And to the reader, thank you. You're going to bloodydamn love these books."Well...actually...Because I most definitely did not. Not only was the story boring as FUCK to me, but the cocky egotism displayed in the "acknowledgements" was clearly evident in the writing. Every single sentence felt so pretentious that I could only imagine Brown typing each sentence out and then hitting that period button while exclaiming...Ugh. Regardless, this was just not what I expecting in any way. So I'm not going to torture myself by finishing and then giving what I know would be a heinously unfair review.

  • Dorreh
    2019-02-14 23:09

    It's like The Martian marries the hunger games, then the hunger games gets into an affair with the game of Thrones. I think that speaks for itself, but let's elaborate further just for the sake of my sanity shall we??I want to first of all point out what really gripped me in this book, because even though I liked it very much, I was 30% confusion, 20% outrage, 50% admiration. I'm not to great at math, but thats a 100% of how I felt. The gripping part to me was not the romance( which was pretty good, oh and that shocking last minute turn), or the action, or even the admirable albeit familiar setting, it was simply the touch of reality in Darrow's character. Most authors create a symbolic hero, self less, honorable, and self sacrificial to a point of outrage. This wasn't the case here. Although Darrow is a boy who knows love and loyalty, anger and betrayal, he is a touch more down to earth. Yes he is self less and all, but he's a realistic kind of selfless, a person with relatable abilities, a character that stands out, but is still only human. It started from Eo and her indulging him in her ideas. You see were this any other novel, he would have probably jumped at the idea of a revolution, of change, because well, he is the main protagonist, he is supposed to be wise beyond his years and so open minded and fearless that nothing else really matters. But Darrow isn't, he like any other real person depressed by years of brainwashing knows fear, see's the reality of his limitations, and is actually afraid of consequences. And why this was so gripping to me is that he is given space to grow, to overcome fears that are logical and real, he is not fearless, but he learns to be brave. He masters courage, and finds love where he looked for revenge. Also the great page turner was the shock that came right before the game was over, twins?!?! Who would have thought, I had considered lovers or allies, but that one came so fast and out of nowhere it kinda made me stumble there for a minute. Even though i had a soft spot in me for mustang since the very beginning, and then she nailed her territory in my heart when she saved Darrow's life. And Cassius made me want to punch someone, even though at the same time I sympathized with him. Who can get over the blood of a loved one easily? Despite all the great aspects this book had, I had trouble keeping up with the literature at times. The author did quite a splendid job, truly, but I guess his style of writing just didn't sync with me to well. There were times when I had focus harder on a sentence to catch its meaning, it didn't let me float through the words and let my imagination free like I usually do with books. So I guess those small confusions were my only true complaint about this book. But will I be reading the rest? Oh, definitely yes, wouldn't miss it for the world. Can't wait to see how he will conquer or fall in this tale.

  • Jessica ❁ ➳ Silverbow ➳ ❁ Rabid Reads
    2019-02-11 22:27

    12/29/17 - ON SALE for $2.99:http://amzn.to/2yPd6qV1/27/16 - Updated Review:Pierce Brown would be a Gold in the society he built, and it kind of pisses me off. This is the third time I've read RED RISING, it's the first time I've read it since reading GOLDEN SON, and, more than ever, I'm convinced he's a bloodydamn genius.AND he's beautiful. It's not fair. You don't get to be brilliant AND talented AND have those eyes AND those arms:You're welcome.In heels, I might be taller than him, but who the hell cares in the face of ALL THE OTHER THINGS?Everything about this book is perfection. I'll admit, like many others, the first time I read it, I didn't love it immediately. I may have even forced my enthusiasm for awhile. BUT. With every additional read, I see more and more of the aforementioned genius. Tiny, seemingly insignificant things that are easily overlooked in the thrill of first discovery, but at a second glance . . . are the exact kinds of things that separate a good book from a GREAT book.He's crass in the barracks without crossing a line into juvenile bathroom humor. He uses innuendo without being cheesy--any females out there who didn't swoon at the mention of a helldiver's dexterous fingers?--and when the innuendo is meant to be cornball, it makes you laugh rather than roll your eyes:Well played, Mars. They say Mercury is the trickster, but your japes always have a certain…flair!” “Flair, eh? Well, I’m sure I could rustle up some tricks for you on Olympus…” “Huzzah,” she coos suggestively.Huzzah. *giggle snorts*And those are a mere handful of the multitudes of similar nuanced details found on every other page. All I'm saying is that if I find out he plays guitar or sings or even gives really great impressions à la Tom Hiddleston, things are gonna get ugly.Brown . . . You have been warned.Reviewed by: Rabid ReadsRED RISING by Pierce Brown might be the best book in the history of ever.When I first heard about this book, I was accosted with comparisons to THE HUNGER GAMES. By bloggers, by publicists, by other authors . . . Everyone has read THE HUNGER GAMES, and everyone loved THE HUNGER GAMES (myself included), and the comparisons to THE HUNGER GAMES were probably inevitable, b/c RED RISING was the first Dystopian novel since THE HUNGER GAMES that has even remotely come close to the same level of brutality (IMO).However, RED RISING takes THE HUNGER GAMES‘ brutality and spits on it. Then jeers and makes rude gestures at it. Then rips off its arms and legs and beats it with them, shouting “Pax au Telemanus!” at the top of its lungs.Seriously, I would’ve thought it impossible for me to even finish, let alone like, a book with this level of savagery. BUT Brown is clever about it. I didn’t even realize it myself until I was 75ish% finished and looking back through the parts I’d highlighted. And (right) now it’s occurring to me that Brown is even more clever than I originally thought him to be, b/c Darrow (MC) would be struggling with the same issues I was having.About 30ish% into the book, you enter the third stage, and while the overall feel is still one of horror at the inhumanity of the upper classes, Darrow's enemies start to become humanized. Funny, nay, downright HILARIOUS things happen, camaraderie develops . . . It creeps up on you until you forget why Darrow is where he is. You're caught up in the NOW, survival depends on the present, and little thought is given to the past or the future.And you're experiencing this so vividly b/c Darrow is too.RED RISING is about a world run by a caste system. The castes are based on the eugenically modified eye color of a person. But the eugenics are not limited to the color of an individual’s iris, oh no, they have Obsidian elite soldiers that are twice the size of normal men, Violet artists with twelve fingers on each hand to better art with, and Pinks whose only job is to provide pleasure *waggles eyebrows* for the high-color castes (mostly Golds and Silvers). Pinks who sometimes have wings among other fantastical features created by Violets.And then there are the Golds. The Golds that are in charge. The Golds that send their own children to an Institute, where if they survive “The Passage” (a sort of enforced Survival of the Fittest), they play a real-life version of RISK. How well they play determines their futures, with the victorious team members being assured fame and fortune. There are no rules once the ten month-long game begins, but killing other Golds is frowned upon. *snorts*It should be noted that there are worse things than death.Enter Darrow, a Red from the lowest-level caste. He is a Helldiver, one of the elite driller/miners who live beneath Mars’ surface, who believes he labors to provide a better future for his people. His job, along with the other Reds, is to mine Helium-3 which is essential in terraforming. The Earth is overpopulated you see, and Darrow’s ancestors were burdened with the glorious purpose of ensuring Mars is habitable for future generations. As soon as terraforming is complete, the Reds will return to the surface as the rightful rulers of the planet that was built on their backs.L-I-E-S.I could go on and on (and on) about this book. Though it is (for unfathomable reasons) listed as YA, I can tell you that I will not be getting it for my youngest (14 y.o.) sister any time in the near future. I can also tell you that if you read this book, you will run the full gamut of emotions—I did anyway.Bottomline: RED RISING is one of the absolute must-reads of 2014.My other reviews for this series:Golden Son (Red Rising, #2)Morning Star (Red Rising Trilogy, #3)

  • Melissa ♥ Dog Lover ♥ Martin
    2019-01-23 22:00

    When I first read the book I must have been on crack, because it went from 4 stars to 5 and my favorites list! It's bloodydamn awesome! Let me just say the second time around listening to it on audio was fanfreakingtastic! The narrator nails it and there is a song in the book and a woman sings it at the end and I got freaking chills people. Chills! I have my loves: Darrow, Sevro, Mustang, Pax, Roque. There are a few more but those are the mains. I'm going to have to add a few spoilers with excerpts and thoughts. So up goes the big ole banner. Darrow is a Helldiver on Mars. He lives underground digging the earth so other people can live. Oh, the things he doesn't know. His wife Eo is wonderful but she has her own agenda. Below Mars these people are mostly a family. Even though they barely get by with food, etc. The Golds barely give them anything. It's all bullsh*t but we won't go there. The first thing you should know about me is I am my father's son. And when they came for him, I did as he asked. I did not cry. Not when the Society televised the arrest. Not when the Golds tried him. Not when the Grays hanged him. Mother hit me for that. My brother Kieran was supposed to be the stoic one. He was the elder, I was the younger. I was supposed to cry. Instead, Kieran bawled like a girl when Little Eo tucked a haemanthus into Father's left workboot and ran back to her own father's side. My sister Leanna murmured a lament beside me. I just watched and thought it a shame that he died dancing but without his dancing shoes. On Mars there is not much gravity. So you have to pull the feet to break the neck. They let the loved ones do it.If any of the people do anything wrong they are killed. I hate the Golds so much! The evil ones at any rate. One sad day Eo takes Darrow to a forbidden place so he can see they are living a lie. So he can see the true world. And . . . they were caught. They were both to be flogged and they were but Eo decides to sing the song of death. And what that means is it is a forbidden song and any who sing it will be hanged. But never has Eo been more beautiful to me than in that moment. In the face of cold power, she is fire. This is the girl who danced through the smoky tav with a mane of red. This is the girl who wove me a wedding band of her own hair. This is the girl who chooses to die for a song of death. My love, my loveRemember the criesWhen winter died for spring skiesThey roared and roared But we grabbed our seedAnd sowed a songAgainst their greedAnd Down in the valeHear the reaper swing, the reaper swingthe reaper swingDown in the valeHear the reaper sing A tale of winter doneMy son, my sonRemember the chainsWhen gold ruled with iron reins We roared and roared And twisted and screamed For ours, a vale of better dreams"Yes," the ArchGovernor says idly. "I have an appointment with Arcos. Hang the rusty bitch lest she continue to howl.""Live for more," she mouths to me. she reaches into her pocket and pulls out the haemanthus I gave her. It is smashed and flat. Then loudly she screams to all those gathered, "Break the chains!"Darrow had to pull her legs to break her neck. It was heartbreak, utter heartbreak. The jerks would never let them take down the loved ones that were hanged. They left them there to rot and then crushed them to dust when they were skeletons. Darrow would not let this happen to Eo. He took her down and buried her. As he was to be hanged for this, something else happened. He did not die. He was drugged and taken to an order of Reds that are fighting back against the system. Darrow is turned from a Red into a Gold. This means tremendous pain that many do not live through. Changing the brain, changing the bone structure, muscle mass, eyes . . . but Darrow's body was strong even though it was weak from his living conditions. The Elderwomen of Lykos say that when a man is bitten by a pitviper, all the poison must be drawn out of the bite, for the poison is wicked. When I was bitten, Uncle Narol left some in on purpose.After months of healing and learning to be a Gold, Darrow is taken and given tests to see if he can get into the Golds school to become something of himself. In reality, to kill them all! Darrow passes and is picked by the House Mars and he is to fight with them against other houses. There can only be so many that win. The boys and girls go through some horrific things. Many lose their lives. But it's so bloodydamn good! They are ruthless and do what they have to do. No, many of them don't want to do these things but they have to do it. Darrow has to do it for Eo and for the Reds and all they have lost over the years by all of the lies. Darrow is knows as the Reaper....This is a freaking awesome book and I will read it many times. There are only a few things in the book I don't like, but there is always that! I leave you with the full song from the book: Listen, listenRemember the waneOf sun's fury and waving grainWe fell and fellAnd danced alongTo croon a knellOf rights and wrongsAnd My son, my son Remember the burnWhen leaves were fire and seasons turnedWe fell and fellAnd sang a songTo weave a cellAll autumn longAnd Down in the vale Hear the reaper swing, the reaper swingthe reaper swingDown in the valeHear the reaper singA tale of winter longMy girl, my girlRemember the chillWhen rains froze and snows did killWe fell and fellAnd danced alongThrough icy hellTo their winter songMy love, my loveRemember the criesWhen winter died for spring skiesThey roared and roaredBur we grabbed our seedAnd sowed a songAgainst their greedMy son, my sonRemember the chainsWhen gold ruled with iron reignsWe roared and roared And twisted and screamedFor ours, a valeof better dreamsAnd Down in the vale Hear the reaper swing, the reaper swingthe reaper swing.Down in the valeHear the reaper singA tale of winter done.Mel ♥MY BLOG: Melissa Martin's Reading List****Old Review****For whatever reason I loved the first part of the book better then the last part. I thought it was going to be a cool underground Mars weird thing. I'm the weird thing, I know. =)I loved Darrow and a lot of other characters but I never wrote any down but Darrow. Omg! I don't know what is wrong with me. Why can't I remember them, uh, because most of them I can't even pronounce, much less think of how to spell them! I loved that Darrow was a Helldiver <--- that so doesn't sound right! He and his colony of Reds dig into Mars inner layers to get what the world needs to survive. Well, guess what? He finds out that the world don't need saving, Mars is totally livable! There are all kinds of colors on in this world and I'm not going into all of them because they have a lot but the ones that are jerks are the Golds. (I don't like that color anyway)By the hands of the Golds and Darrow's wife Eo's decision, Darrow's fate has been sealed for him. He is taken into the world. THE WORLD and he is changed to become a Gold and infiltrate their evilness and TAKE THEM DOWN! Like I said in one of my updates that Darrow went through some serious Frankenstein stuff. Okay, not seriously LIKE Frankenstein but some pretty messed up stuff to turn from a Red to a Gold. Who knew? Then he gets put into tests to get into school and hopefully get on a ship or something cool where he can be a big man to do big things. But, the kids are put through some grueling things in order to see who is going to be some of the top contenders. It was pretty messed up but life is generally messed up in one way or another. I really hope to enjoy the rest of this trilogy. I'm interested to read what's going to happen now that Darrow is . . . well I can't tell you that, but lets just say he is within reach of the person he wants to end most in the world! MY BLOG: Melissa Martin's Reading List

  • Petrik
    2019-01-23 16:10

    4.5/5 Stars Buddy reading this with my favorites:Sweet Mary, Sister Sarah, Tweebie, Jennymort, Innocent MayLet’s get the two most asked questions about this book out of the way first.1. Is this book geared towards YA audience?No, it’s not. The only thing that fits the YA genre on this book is that Darrow’s (The MC) age starts at 16 years old in the beginning, that’s it. Everything else from the writing, plot, world building is definitely in adult territory.2. Is this book really similar to The Hunger Games?I’ll be honest here, there are some similarities especially during the competition and I really don’t like The Hunger Games series. Now, the right question would have to be “are they in the same league with each other?” My answer will have to be this:Putting Hunger Games in the same league with Red Rising is a major disgrace to this book. Red Rising make the Hunger Games looked like child's play, I’m not going to bash The Hunger Games but imo that series is an example of over hyped shit, oh wait I just did. How can you even compare Darrow to angsty Katniss who screamed "PEETA PEETA PEEEEEEEEETTTTTTAAAAAAAAAAAA" for the whole series and doesn’t even know how to properly shoot an arrow?I mean who does that really? Okay I know that image didn’t happen in the book otherwise she will become Voldemort but Darrow will obliterate Katniss in a fight while she screamed: "PEETTTTTAAAAA" (I'll stop saying that now) and he’s much a better protagonist compared to her imo. Enough about the comparison though I’ll get on with my review now.Without telling anything about the story itself, let me tell you that this tale is done from Darrow’s 1st person POV and it will tell the story of how he will achieve his revenge after what happened to him in the beginning of the book. There are rage, politics, love, vengeance, sadness, hierarchy, racism and slavery in this book, I’ll say this once again, this book is not YA. There are some rape and hint of cannibalism that I don’t think are suitable for younger audience.The characters in this book are really easy to get attached to. It’s only the first out of the trilogy and yet I can’t help myself but truly feels for them ever since the first 70 pages. It’s really hard for me to like a series done from 1st person perspective as almost every YA Sci-Fi Dystopian books or movies I read and watched consists of angsty whiny teenage female who always goes “wahhh wahh wahhh I’m a monster wahh wahh ooohhhh two guys like me what to do what to do wahhh wahh” shut up, buy some Pizza and stuff them in your mouth for god sake.Darrow as an MC is not any of those at all. He’s a complex person filled with rage and at the same time full of love for his people and friends. He’s not afraid to get things done when needed and he does not fall in despair but instead decided to shape his own future by finding his own strength and fight for everyone.“The measure of a man is what he does when he has power.”Conflicted with his main mission and love towards his new friends, I really can’t wait to see how his character will develop further and see the progress of his relationships with the other fantastic side characters, Eo, Mustang, Cassius, onDancer, Mickey, Roque, Pax and especially my favorite (and probably everyone) Sevro.None of the things I mentioned above will make the book worked for me without Pierce Brown’s writing style. I absolutely love his writing style, it’s easy to follow and the pacing is bloody perfect. The book is fast paced, it’s really easy to read for me and the words he chose are so raw, full of rage and brutal yet poignant at times. Almost every scene, whether it’s the great action and strategy sequences or even when the characters are just talking with each other could really pump my blood and filled me with adrenaline. Words like hatred, vengeance, justice, rage are often used that it really reminds me of a video game series I really loved following Kratos in his tale of revenge called God of War.The only minor problems I have with this book are in its World-building aspect. This factor is really good and I think Pierce Brown managed to create an atmospheric world but it falls a bit short for me during the 2nd part of the book. I wish the area where the competition took place doesn’t really feel like Earth since it took place on Mars but it truly does. However, most of all I wish some of the terminology used here could really be given more detail. There are a lot of terms and devices unique to this world that are simply mentioned and never explained clearly, it’s truly up to us the reader to create our imagination based on the name and vague description that it will take a bit of time to get used to. (It’s nothing though compared to 200 pages of info dump on the Black Prism by Brent Weeks, that was hell to go through.)There is a really high chance that this series will go down as one of my favorite series of all time depending on the sequels. The first book out of the trilogy is already really great for me and I really enjoyed reading it but literally, everyone who read this series told and reminded me that the 2nd and 3rd book is superior which bloodydamn excites me. Without the minor problems I mentioned this book would’ve been easily a 5 for me. I highly recommend this series to anyone who’s looking for a great sci-fi dystopian story that doesn’t consist of any YA tropes and is filled with great plots, brutality, well paced, fantastic characters and development. This is basically Hunger Games of Thrones in Mars for new adult and adult audience and I really ended up loving it more than I thought I would.

  • Virginia Ronan ♥ Herondale ♥
    2019-01-26 16:08

    ”Brave pioneers, always remember that obedience is the highest virtue. Above all, obedience, respect, sacrifice, hierarchy…”It’s been quite a while I last dove into a science fiction series but “Red Rising” definitely was worth it! This book was so well made and always forced me to think ahead, to anticipate what would come next and to try to figure out how the MC would handle the situation! Just like Darrow I constantly found myself wondering who was going to stab him in the back and who would try to support him! And let me tell you this: There were really, really many unexpected twists and turns!!! Jeez! There were already so many changes in the first 100 pages, it was really crazy!!! I mean seriously crazy! *lol*“Red Rising” was dark, it was brutal, it was cunning, it was sneaky and unexpected! But oh boy, did I love it! XDIt was an incredible rollercoaster that left me gasping for more and of course I already ordered the second book! ;-PTo explain this book in a few sentences is definitely more than just hard, but I’m going to try to do it anyway. Because, well, Pierce Brown deserves it! =))The plot:”We’re to sacrifice for the good of men and women we don’t know. We’re to dig to ready Mars for others. That makes some of us nastyminded folks.”Darrow is a sixteen year old Red and a Helldiver, one of the many Red miners that risk their lives in order to extract elements from Mars’ barren earth but also one of the few who’s truly respected. Not everyone has what it takes to be a Helldiver and Darrow no doubt is one of the best Mars has to offer. For a hundred and fifty years millions of Reds have tried to make the planet habitable, yet they still haven’t managed to live on the surface. Well, at least that’s what they’ve been told! The truth is that it’s all a sham and one big lie! A lie the Golds have told them to make them obedient and to keep them under their thumb, and a lie that cost Darrow everything! As a boy who has nothing left to lose and everything to gain Darrow decides to make a stand, ascending from the depths of Mars, his only aim the destruction of the society that has betrayed them for so long. ”I would have lived in peace, but my enemies brought me war.”The characters:This wouldn’t be one of my reviews if I wouldn’t point out that the characters section is going to be full of massive spoilers! So yeah, consider yourself warned!!! *lol* ;-PDarrow:”We sweat and we laugh and try to forget the anger. We grew together, and now are grown. In her eyes, I see my heart. In her breath, I hear my soul. She is my land. She is my kin. My love.I love Darrow! This boy is amazing! I loved the way he thought about Eo and how much he adored her! He always tried to be a good man but then they killed his wife and everything went to hell! It was painful to watch him evolve and to see how much he changed throughout the book. Not just physically but also mentally! Deep down within him he’s still a good and honourable person but he now lives in a world where he doesn’t have the luxury to be kind. I hated to see him struggle with his destiny and sometimes I just wanted to reassure him that everything was going to be alright. There were so many powerful moments in this book and they all shaped him somehow! Julian’s death, Titus’ resistance, Cassius' betrayal, Pax’s unconditional loyalty that cost him his life… They were all pieces of a puzzle that formed him into something new and if I’m entirely honest I don’t even want to know how much he’s going to suffer in the next book. Scratch that, Hell I definitely want to know!!! *lol*”Dancer, Darrow is like a stallion, one of the old stallions of Earth. Beautiful beasts that will run as hard as you push them. They will run. And run. And run. Until they don’t. Until their hearts explode.””Let me dig in the earth. Let me sing the songs of my people and leap and spin and run along the walls. I would never sing the forbidden song. I would work. I would bow. Let me wash dirt from my hands instead of blood. I want to live with my family. We were happy enough.Freedom costs too much.””I hope his pain fades in death. I did not love him till he was dead; and he should be dead, but he is still my brother. So I pray he finds peace in the vale and that I will see him again one day and we’ll embrace as brothers as he forgives me for what I did to him, because I did it for a dream, for our people.”Mustang:”Fancy a roll in the mud, do we? Well, how about I promise to let you up here with me if you give me more clues as to where your castle squats? Towers? Sprawls? I can be a kind master.”Finally an awesome female MC!!! Gosh how much I adored her! She was so self-confident and cheeky!!! AND I loved the way she thought! She is a Gold by birth but she was as fierce as a Red and that only caused me to like her even more. It was pretty clear that deep down within her she actually dislikes the system she was born into and is willing to change it! So yeah I think she’s the perfect love interest for Darrow and I can’t wait to see more of her! Plus, her true name is Virginia! *lol* I’m not biased… not at all! ;-P ”There’s pain when I hold her, but it comes from the past, not from Mustang. She is something new, something hopeful. Like spring to my deep winter.””Oooo. I am Reaper. God of wolves. King of strategy.” Mustang pinches my cheek. “You are just too adorable.”Cassius:”Well, I do believe I am the lightning,” Cassius declares. “And you, my brooding friend, are the thunder.”I never liked Cassius, I respected him and valued his intelligence but just like Darrow I never truly trusted him. I can understand why he was so furious and wanted to kill Darrow, but it really wasn’t like Darrow would have had a choice. It was either him or Julian and even though his approach might have been brutal this still doesn’t mean that he enjoyed killing Cassius' brother. After everything they’ve been through I really hoped that he’d think before he did something stupid, unfortunately he didn’t though. =((( So yeah, I guess after his declaration in the war room there’s going to be a lot of trouble in the next book! ”I didn’t have a choice,” I tell him. “I hope you know that.”“You will rot in hell, you manipulative son of a bitch,” he cries. “You allowed me to call you brother!””The spark in his eye has cooled. Time and space away from this place are what his souls needs. Months of siege. Months of anger and defeat. Months of loss and guilt have drained him of all that makes him Cassius. What a poor soul. I feel sorry for him. I almost laugh. After he put a sword in my belly, I pity him.Roque:”And violent hearts set harshest flame,” Roque murmurs from his knee.I liked that boy right from the beginning and I think he was the perfect counterweight to Darrow and Cassius. He was always the voice of reason and kind of complemented their triumvirate. *lol* Since he was such a kind boy I couldn’t help but wonder how he survived the passage, he obviously did though! XD I liked that he was so loyal to Darrow and that he decided to keep his secret. Roque was a poet with principles and in my eyes that made him more than just an interesting character. ;-) I really hope that he’ll play some part in the next book as well! ”A thin boy I hardly recognize delivers it to me. But when he grabs me in a skeletal embrace, a hug so hard it hurts, I know who he is.A silent sob echoes in my chest.He is quiet as he hugs me. Then his body shudders like Pax’s did as he met death. Except these shudders come from joy, not pain.Roque lives.Sevro:Sevro shrugs. “We’ll take Minerva’s standard.”“W-wait,” Cassius says. “You know how to do that?”Sevro snorts. “What do you think I’ve been doing this whole time, you silky turd? Wanking off in the bushes?”Cassius and I look at each other.“Kind of,” I say.“Yeah, actually,” Cassius agrees.That sassy, cunning and cocky little wolf!!! I LOVE HIM SO FREAKIN MUCH!!! *LOL* I think I’m probably the only person that developed a little crush on him, but Holy moly that boy was incredible! XD He definitely was my favourite character and when I found out that he was Fitchners’ son I actually laughed! This boy is nothing but awesome and I can’t wait to see more of him!!! Please my beloved book gods let him make an appearance in the other two books as well! I need more Sevro in my life!!! <3”Why, if it isn’t my belly buddy!” Tactus drawls. “Why the limp, my friend?”“Your mother rode me ragged,” Sevro grunts.“Bah, you’d have to stand on your tiptoes to even kiss her chin.”“Wasn’t her chin I was trying to kiss.”The Jackal:”Humans are always negotiating. That’s what conversation is. Someone has something, knows something. Someone wants something.” His smile is pleasant, but his eyes… There is something wrong with him. A different soul seems to have filled his body since the time he was Lucian. I have seen actors… but this is different. It is as though he is reasonable to the point of being inhuman.Oookay, the Jackal was probably one of the scariest book villains I ever came across! *lol* The scene when he cut his hand off? OH GOD! It gave me the creeps and made me feel sick! Seriously that boy is just downright insane and creepy! I have absolutely no clue how Virginia and him can be related, let alone be twins!!! I don’t even want to know what he’s going to do in the next book and I’m afraid I might get nightmares if I think about it all too much! >_<”The Jackal is halfway done when he looks up at me with a sane smile that convinces me of his complete insanity. His teeth chatter. He is laughing, at me, at this, at the pain. I’ve not met anyone like him. Now I know how Mickey felt when he met me. This is a monster in the flesh of a man.All things considered “Red Rising” was a more than just intriguing read and never ceased to keep me on my toes! I’m already looking forward to read the second book and I can’t wait to find out what’s going to happen next! =)

  • Shelby *trains flying monkeys*
    2019-02-05 15:26

    2nd read:I'm a dumbass. I fully admit to being a dumbass. I don't know what the hell I was doing the first time I read this book..because I gave it 3.5 stars. After reading so many shitty books this year I know now what a great book this really is.This time it gets it's full five stars. Five frigging, huge, screaming stars. Stars for SeVRo, Pax, Mustang and the rest of these characters.1st read: When I was a dumbass.Unpopular opinion time. I'm sorry fangirls. I just didn't love this book.I did enjoy parts of it. Then there were times when my eyes just glazed over. Dang it. I had such high hopes for it too. I probably will check out the sequels to see how it goes before final decision is made.

  • Kai
    2019-01-29 14:58

    “I would have lived in peace. But my enemies brought me war.”A man, whose life is about to change in every way possible. From the bones of his body to the colour of his eyes, from the place he lives to the way he talks. He's got nothing to lose and everything to gain.I was incredibly intrigued to start this series. I watched Red Rising go from underrated to hyped and now that the final installment of the series was released, I had to give it a try as well.I first started the book and put it down again after around 50 pages. I had a hard time imagining the fictional world and the time it took to read those few pages discouraged me.A few weeks later I had more spare time and decided to give it another try. It still took me nearly three weeks to finish it, mostly because this novel is so HUGE. I'm not talking about page count, I'm talking about the world building, the style of writing and the darkness of it all. Darrow is not the most heart-warming character either. Sometimes I wasn't given enough detail and additionally I was confused by the many new terms.Anyway, it was a fantastic read. I never got bored, never felt like I knew where the story was going. Lots of unexpected turns kept me on the hook. It was smart, thrilling, scary, cruel and exciting. Darrow is a wicked and badass main character and I'm sure I can expect great things from him and his author in the sequels.Find more of my books on Instagram

  • Darth J
    2019-02-10 15:02

    Red Rising reads like a 12 year old boy’s fever script for an action movie. It lacks originality and borrows heavily from The Hunger Games. Don’t believe me? Both have a society split up into different fractions, depending on what they provide the world. Both have arenas with teens killing each other, while patrons look on and provide gifts for their favored participants. Both have protagonists who have signature weapons from a hunter/gatherer society. There are a few differences, but it’s the same basic premise. Except way too long and on Mars.Red RantOkay, the “Red Queen is a ripoff of Red Rising!!!” comments are inaccurate. Yes, there is a color-coded society in both. However, Red Queen has 2 colors: Red and Silver. That’s it. And in that book the segregation of the colors is about who has powers and who doesn’t. Red Rising has a rainbow of colors to choose from, but here’s the most important distinction: THERE ARE NO POWERS IN RED RISING. None. If one really wanted to make an argument about someone stealing another color-coded system, it might be more apt to say Pierce Brown ripped it from Star Trek because both use colors as easily identifiable ways to delineate job categories. Why does the Red Queen/Red Rising similarity bother me so much? Because reading all of the reviews for Queen made me think that Rising would actually be similar, but the comparison is just simplistic and superficial.The writing is clunky and bloodydamn hard to follow along with at points. Half of the compound words have a random capital halfway through them like something Margo Roth Spiegelman would approve of. There are too many characters to keep track of, and most of them die anyway before you remember why they are important. The arena portion, while the meat of the book, dragged on and on and could have cut about 100 pages while still making its point. I thought it was lazy world building to borrow so heavily from Greco-Roman mythology for a future civilization. Don’t even get me started on the teens pontificating ancient philosophers’ quotes at each other…Also, “Red Rising” sounds more like a pill you need to call a doctor for if *something* lasts more than 4 hours. Jussayin’.So will I read Golden Sun? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

  • Mikee Andrea (ReadWithMikee)
    2019-02-20 15:25

    ❝I will rise. I will attend the Academy. I will learn to lead fleets. I will win. I will sharpen myself into a sword. I will give my soul. I will dive to hell in hopes of one day rising to freedom. I will sacrifice.❞HOLY CRAP. What a ride. I don't even know where to begin! I knew there had to be a reason why everyone was talking about this series but WOW. Red Rising was really something else. I expected a typical YA "chosen one" type of fantasy novel but this book was so much more complex than that. And it was definitely more Adult than YA. In truth, it reminded me a lot of the Hunger Games meets Lord of the Flies. But since I haven't read The Hunger Games, I can't really compare too much besides what I've seen in the movies. But I did get very similar vibes!Darrow was such a great character. I loved his transformation so much. I was a bit wary about him in the beginning but the more the story progressed, the more I grew attached to his character. He came such a long way from the Red Darrow we first meet to the Gold Darrow we see by the end of the book. It's really as if these two characters were two different people. All the other characters were great as well, even the notorious villains in the story. Mustang was an absolute QUEEN and I can't wait to explore her character even more in the next book. She's such an amazing character and I felt like we didn't get to see as much as I wanted to. Same with Sevro! I loved his loyalty and friendship with Darrow. And PAX omg. My heart. I can't wait to see their development as the series progresses.The only real complaint I had with Red Rising was the world building, and a bit of the pacing as well. It wasn't until maybe halfway through that the story finally started to pick up. The first half was to establish the society and hierarchy. I found it to be VERY confusing, and I'm still trying to figure it all out even now. The beginning felt very info-dumpy therefore I didn't understand too much of the society other than the fact that the Golds are the highest of highs and Reds are the lowest of lows, everyone else just fits somewhere along the middle.If people didn't tell me to push through, I would've probably set this book aside because of how confused I was. But I'm glad I stuck with it because Red Rising probably sealed a place on my favorite series list! I can't wait to get through the rest of the series and binge read the next two books. :)

  • LolaReviewer
    2019-02-15 17:06

    This is the kind of book that truly makes you feel somehow...bad for only giving it 2 stars. It’s like it deserves more, even though I didn’t actually enjoy reading it. It’s a weird feeling but I have to face my thoughts: the story was mostly boring and I struggled to finish it.The weirdest thing is that I LOVED the beginning and where the plot seemed to be going. We met some incredible and unique characters, at that point of the story. I wished for them to be present in it throughout the book. But they weren’t...The only character we actually kept seeing, as the story went, was the main one. Such a shame since I wanted to know more about his uncle. And his wife...oh dear, I went re-reading the parts she were in since she’s the kind of character that brigs a wonderful atmosphere inside a story.Again, before the ‘battle’ began, a developed world-building was presented, one that I only wanted to know more of. Then, when our fellow Darrow, the main character, went on the battlefield (which can also be called the school), I lost interest very quickly because there was only mischief, grief, pressure, fear, mystery, and savageness all mixed up together in the atmosphere.Also, our main character changed a lot. He became...a God. He wasn’t like that at all before and I liked the fact that, for once, a male main character isn’t perfect or hasn’t the strength to ‘save the world.’ Of course, character development is not a bad thing but has to be moderated. And why was it necessary to make Darrow that perfect and respected and the kind of person that gives someone the feeling that everything is possible and that no giving up is allowed?The writing was good but the pacing so slow, the kind of slow that makes it necessary for you to read a page per two minutes. Which equals 30 pages read per hour. Which is not enough, in my opinion. I guess it can differ from one person to another but I shared this with you so you know what awaits you with the pacing and that it’s not, as in not at all, a fast-paced story.Also, there is a lot of betrayal in this book. Of course, I was expecting it but what I wasn’t expecting was for Darrow to be betrayed AND betray. At some point, before the main character was transformed into a God-like one, he was mean and ruthless and negative. The thing is, I felt like he had multiple personalities...There is like 1% of romance in this book so, if that’s what you were looking for, I highly suggest for you to look elsewhere.Obviously many people liked this book, so I can’t dare say I don’t recommend it. The first part and half of the second were amazing but the other ones were boredoms I only wished to escape from.

  • Kimi
    2019-02-08 23:19

     Holy bloody gory damn shit. This book you guys. THIS. BOOK. I feel like Darrow would benefit from some basic life advice so here it goes.Basic Life Advice 101. (view spoiler)[When you don’t want your wife to die: Avoid pulling her feet down when her neck is attached to a rope. When you want to make a best friend at school: Avoid killing their brother and then lying about it. When someone tells you to come and see something: Try to figure out it’s a trap before you go running after them. When you don’t want to be discovered as a Red: Avoid yelling BLOODYDAMN when you’re stabbing someone in the eyeball. When you don’t want someone to escape: Avoid saying you’ll set them free if they cut their own hand. When you want to get a girlfriend: Avoid choosing your mortal enemy’s twin sister.(hide spoiler)]It's really not that hard. I'm sure you can do it, Darrow. My favorite character in this book was definitely Pax and we all know what that means.(view spoiler)[ Of course he HAD to die. Why does it keep happening! I loved that big guy so much.(hide spoiler)]If you're considering reading this book. I would HIGHLY encourage you to do so. It has exceeded all my expectations. Thanks for reading. Please share your thoughts. ----Pre-Reading Due to popular demand, I'm finally reading this book. I hope it's as great as you guys say it is. Also, Pierce Brown is bae. Also, I ship Piersha. ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>

  • ✘✘ Sarah ✘✘ (former Nefarious Breeder of Murderous Crustaceans)
    2019-02-20 23:10

    Mammoth buddy read with my Fantasy Buddy Reads confederates starting Jan. 2, 2015.Rating: 1.5Brace yourselves, this is not going to go well.YES, I only gave this book 1.5 stars when most of you freaks out there gave it a 5 star rating. But it could have been worse and I'm actually marvelling at the fact that I was able to finish the book at all. Granted, I skimmed through most of the last chapters because there is only so much boredom I can take.First off, let's get something straight: when everyone tells you you need to get past the first 35% of a book before it gets interesting you should think twice about reading it. It happened to me this time, it won't happen again. When I read a book I want it to be interesting from page 1 and not have to wait to be one third in for the story to go somewhere.Do you want to know what my main problem with this book is? The writing.Things didn't start well between Red Rising and me since I tend to have a hard time with first person/present tense narratives. What makes it a lot worse here is the short sentence structure: I would never sing the forbidden song. I would work. I would bow. Let me wash dirt from my hands instead of blood. I want only to live with my family. We were happy enough.Now that kind of staccato writing really makes me want to scream. It's exhausting to read and makes me feel like I'm choking.Brown tries too hard. He tries too hard to be poetic in a dark, melodramatic way. He tries too hard to impress with what some readers seem to think are profound, quote-worthy lines. The problem is that his supposedly poetic prose feels forced and immature. Not only is his writing not poetic, it is completely flat and unemotional.The way Brown force feeds the reader with Greek and Latin names in the first part of the book? Ridiculous. I originally thought Brown used Latin references for anything Gold-related and Greek references for Ares and the Red but apparently it's not the case. So what purpose does it serve? Mix tens of Classical references together, shake well and what? Nothing. The problem is not that he uses Greek and Latin references. The problem is that he overdoes it and it feels contrived.I suppose the story itself could have been interesting had it been faster paced.The world building and plot development are both tedious and desperately slow. Darrows' non-stop inner dialogue certainly didn't help here. I was pretty much bored to death until I reached the last part of the book. The pace picks up in towards the end but for me it was just too little too late.Although the premise of the book is fairly intriguing the plot is poorly executed and the story is just too predictable. Required twists and revelations? Check. Required betrayals? Check. The problem is that the twists, revelations and betrayals are less than exciting and badly handled. To make things worse, part of the plot resolution made me feel like Brown was out of ideas and chose the easy way out. (view spoiler)[Darrow thinks Mustang betrayed her but she betrays her brother instead and all is well that ends well… Really? {insert eye roll here} (hide spoiler)]You have to get to the famous 35% mark to understand why this has been compared to The Hunger Games. The fact that the action is set in a more ruthless, more violent, bloodier world is apparently supposed to make Red Rising much cooler. Some readers also say it has much more depth than The Hunger Games. Sorry but I don't see that big a difference here. It still reads like YA dystopia to me. It doesn't have the required love triangle? So what? It's still kids playing war games with one of them trying to fight oppression in the process.Other readers have mentioned that some passages of Red Rising also reminded them of Dune, Lord of the Flies, Lord of the Rings and Ender's Game. Me? The arrival at the Institute with the "Sorting Ceremony" scene and dispatching of students in different houses made me feel like I was back at Hogwarts with Harry Potter. One last thing: when a book reminds readers of so many other books? Not a good sign.Miraculously there are a few things I liked about this book: the carving was interesting enough and I really enjoyed Matteo's Professor Higgins-like tutoring of Darrow. I liked Mickey, Sevro and Mustang. That's about it.The problem with Red Rising is that Brown tries too hard to write an epic story. He tries too hard to impress the readers with his prose. And it all falls terribly flat.

  • Katerina
    2019-01-28 23:26

    Darn this book is GOOD! Pierce Brown is a freaking mastermind. Red Rising is a blend of science-fiction and dystopia with reference to History's greatest conquerors and Greek mythology, and the result is savage. “I would have lived in peace. But my enemies brought me war.”Darrow is a Red, working in the mines below the surface of Mars in order to make Mars inhabitable and secure the future of mankind. Reds are mostly slaves, but he has accepted his fate, thinking he's making sacrifices for the next generations, only to discover that everything he's been told by the Gold caste, the ruthless leading caste, is a lie. After a tragic event that leaves him craving revenge, he is approached by the rebels and given a mission; to infiltrate the ranks of the Gold and destroy them. But to do so he must become one of them. He is admitted to the Institute, the school that prepares the most promising Gold for positions of power, but life in the Institute is a constant war. It's a road paved with betrayal, massacres and monstrocities. Darrow is determined to excel, to rise as a Gold only to bring them down as a Red. For his people. For his family. For her.“I am the Reaper and death is my shadow.” The first thing you need to know about Red Rising is that it is ranked among YA books due to the age of the main characters, but it's not a typical YA book. It is brutal, with explicit moments of violence and blood that make your stomach protest, but such brutality does not deter you from loving it. It is part of the evolution of Darrow, of being a good person doing ugly things to achieve a higher purpose, of sacrificing your soul to save many, to rebuilt a society that kills her own children. The second thing you need to know about Red Rising is that the blurbs compare it to the Hunger Games, which, to be candid, is a poor comparison. Both books have in common the fight-to-death-in-a-secluded-area trope, but Red Rising is the one nailing it; it features politics, intrigue, sieges, genious strategies, feeble and strong alliances, it shows the path to forging a leader that earns the respect of his followers. It is all-engrossing, masterly crafted war games, a race to outmaneuver the enemy and step on him to reach the top. Kill or be killed. Deceive or be deceived.It is conquest in its most glorious form.It is uprising, in its subtlest form.It is addiction.“You do not follow me because I am the strongest. Pax is. You do not follow me because I am the brightest. Mustang is. You follow me because you do not know where you are going. I do.” For the sake of honesty, I have to admit that sometimes the terms used were confusing, and I struggled to keep up with the hierarchy and the ranks of the Society. But after Darrow's admission to the Institute, it didn't matter. I was swept off my feet and dived into an intricate and vivid world, I howled in the woods, I wore a wolf's skin and carved scythes in the dark, I stole horses and food, I lost friends to death and treason, I feared the Jackal and shouted “Pax au Telemanus!” until my throat went hoarse. And I was left thirsty for more.“Break the chains, my love.” One of the many things I admired in Pierce Brown's writing is that he blurred the lines between right and wrong, necessity and volition. There were bad Golds, those arrogant, spoiled bastards who lusted for power in its most abominable forms, like rape, but there were also good, loyal Golds, who won your heart. Sevro is the greatest example, and so is Roque, and everything was fine until you realised that they're the enemy. That Darrow must eventually betray them in order to deliver justice and free his people. And while Darrow is an impulsive character, flawed, guided by his rage, he is burning bright and consuming everything in his path, his narrative is captivating to the point you can't separate his thoughts from yours. He views those people as his friends, his family, and you can't miss the irony that there will be a moment when he shall have to choose which one matters the most.“My son, my sonRemember the chainsWhen gold ruled with iron reinsWe roared and roaredAnd twisted and screamedFor ours, a valeof better dreams” Red Rising is an enthralling novel, with its ferocity and radiant world and devious characters, and therefore I kneel and pledge my loyalty to Pierce Brown.You can find this review and more on BookNest!

  • Natasha Polis
    2019-02-17 20:15

    One of the most exciting books I've read in awhile! So glad I finished it now I can talk to Pierce about his book! Book talk coming soon on my channel!

  • Catriona (LittleBookOwl)
    2019-02-01 21:10

    Well. That was a hell of a ride! Fantastic. Action-packed. Love to love, and sometimes hate, all of the characters we meet. I need MORE!I can't believe it has taken me SO long to get to this series, but I'm so glad I finally have.

  • Robin (Bridge Four)
    2019-02-07 21:14

    Sale Alert 18Dec17: I really enjoyed this entire series and today the first book in it is on sale for $1.99 HereI might have liked this even more the second time through. Fantastic. Dystopian novels seem to be a dime a dozen lately, some good, some horrible, so it is great to see a book set itself apart and really capture my imagination. Red Rising is a combination of The Hunger Games and Lord of the Flies if you turned the volume up to 11.I am the spark that will set the worlds afire. I am the hammer that cracks the chains.The beginning was a little predictable, I mean to create a man with an epic quest there must be a great injustice done to him. Darrow is that boy/man, while most boys of seventeen but he has seen and been through too much to be a boy any longer. Married to his childhood sweetheart Eo at sixteen he works for his clan mining underground on Mars so the planet can be terraformed for future generations. He works hard to provide for them but it seems that they are destined to be low forever. Eo has dreams to make their lot in life better for Darrow to stand up and rebel but he wants nothing except her.“You think a dream is worth dying for. I say it isn’t. You say it’s better to die on your feet. I say it’s better to live on our knees.”When Darrow finds out his entire life has been a lie, that mars is already terraformed and has been for generations he is recruited to rebel against the system by transforming from a lowly Red into a Gold, the rulers of the worlds who believe themselves to be Gods among men. Now he must infiltrate their system and become the best Gold possible so that in the future he can destroy them from the inside.Red Rising is dark and intense, full of intrigues and betrayals. Even though the beginning is predictable the rest of the book is not. Just when I start to feel comfortable with the characters and the roles they are playing the rug gets pulled out from under me and I have a very new understanding of the game and the society that constructed it. No one is safe and no one is what they seem. I loved some of the side characters, there are so many that are slightly off. It could be because they are brilliant but it could also be because they are crazy, perhaps both. Servo was one of my favorites and I was never quite sure what that guy was going to pull next. “I killed their pack leader,” Servo says when I ask why the wolves follow him. He looks me up and down and flashes me an impish grin from beneath the wolf pelt. “Don’t worry, I wouldn’t fit in your skin.”Brown has given us glimpses into a vast and complicated world. We have only seen a small part of it so far but what I’ve seen is dark, cruel and intricate. Throughout the story Darrow stumbles and falls but the transformation of him from the beginning of the story to the end was amazing and you get to see every misstep and mistake along the way to make you believe the transformation. I can’t wait to see how Brown follows Red Rising up. Definitely a dystopian worth diving into.

  • Anne
    2019-02-13 23:09

    I just did a re-read to prep myself for Golden Son.*squeals* For me, it was definitely the right choice. I would have missed a lot of references...mainly, because my tiny dinosaur brain can't hold onto/recall information like it used to.So.Was it still as good as I remembered?Original 2013 review:This review can also be seen at Addicted2Heroines.There's a lot of hype surrounding this book, and for once it's totally deserved. How often can you really say that?!When I first started reading it, I was pretty convinced that it was going to be a fairly average book.Maybe.Hopefully.I mean, I've read a lot of dystopians and a lot of sci-fi lately. Was this really going to be that different?And after the first chapter, I was less than impressed. It's set underground. On Mars.Great.And everyone is color-coded.AWESOME. Haven't seen that at least 200 times before...Oh. And the main character is already married? AT SEVENTEEN!?Guh.He's some sort of super-skilled digger? What? Is he part mole-man?Are they DANCING as a form of rebellion?What the fuck kind of stupid shit is this?!Yeah. I was not impressed.Ah, but I was so veryvery wrong.After that initial chapter introducing you to Darrow and his life, this book starts to get really interesting...really fast. Darrow's wife is not content with their life, even though she is very much in love with him. She wants to fight against the Golds that she feels are enslaving her people. Darrow, on the other hand, is not willing to risk their safety (hers in particular) for a dream he doesn't believe in. He may not think that their life is fair, but he believes that he is doing the right thing for future generations by helping to terraform the planet. She, however, sees the potential Darrow has to save the Reds, even when he doesn't see it himself.And she does something unthinkable to help him realize that potential.What she does sets Darrow on an incredible journey to the surface, and into the heart of the enemy. To help realize her dream, he eventually agrees to join the Red's rebellion. He also agrees to allow them to transform him into one of the elite Golds. It's no easy task, since it requires genetic modification, surgery, and lessons in speech and etiquette. After all of this, he must not only gain entrance to their training academy, but come out of it at the head of the class.Unfortunately, not much is known about what happens to the young Golds who enter the academy, only that it produces the future leaders of their society. The rebels have enough resources to forge his documents, but once inside, Darrow will be on his own. When he enters the academy, he feels nothing but revulsion for these obnoxious children. They are lazy, greedy, pampered, and shallow. He has already seen first hand the extent of the Gold's evil deceptions, and nothing will stand in the way of him bringing them down. His hatred of these elitist teenagers burns white-hot in his chest, and it doesn't matter what he has to do in order to emerge victorious...Except.Oh shit.Not many things are truly black and white...are they? M'kay. Lots of comparisons to The Hunger Games floating around out there.In my opinion, Red Rising takes The Hunger Games and spanks its overrated ass.Don't get me wrong, I liked Suzanne Collin's trilogy, and (obviously) so did a lot of other people. But I never quite loved it. Mainly, because Katniss always seemed to be an unwilling participant in the story. She was pushed, pulled, and prodded into everything that she did. And in the end, I felt disappointed that her character never seemed to grow past that. She did what she had to do...and she survived. The End.I wanted to see some sort of spark of life in her, but it seemed (to me) like she was just a depressed puddle of skin, who would occasionally snap out of it and do something extraordinary.Darrow, on the other hand, grew and changed throughout the entire book. He started out as a Katniss-like character, but ended up a different person entirely. His motivations changed, his beliefs changed, and even his view of the world changed. He stopped being a bystander in his life, and the result was spectacular.I gotta say, the writing in this is nothing short of amazing. It's just...I can't adequately describe how much Brown made me feel for these characters. Really, I was blown away.Especially surprising since this was a debut novel.If you only read one book this year, it needs to be this one.Seriously.I received this digital arc from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

  • Cait (Paper Fury)
    2019-02-11 18:22

    READ #2 = Dec 2017In honour of Iron Gold coming in like...a month (!!) I decided I absolutely needed to reread this. I read an eARC like stupidly early (about 6months!?) because I don't even know. My brain is a refried waffle. So I literally remembered NOTHING except that I bloodydamn love this book. And that hasn't changed at all. I'm so in awe of the manipulation, the complex world building, the absolute epicness and the freaking GORYDAMN MESS OF IT ALL. It's fantastic. Basically the best sci-fi ever.The only thing I didn't enjoy in this reread was realising how freaking sexist it is. The "you look/scream/act like a girl!" is used as an insult so much and I just??? We're in a freaking sci-fi world you couldn't have chilled on the sexism!? Anyway.Everything else = AWESOME. And I forgot Sevro was a very undersized snarky and stabby little demon and that Darrow is so freaking Gryffindor but with this absolute violent streak. These two. I would very much like them to take over the world. I HAVE FEELINGS. AGAIN.READ #1 = October 2013Do you know how HARD it is to write a review for a book that smothered you with brilliance? It’s hard, okay? (As Darrow would say, “Bloodydamn hard”.) So I’ll attempt to thump my high regard for this novel into a coherent review. (No promises on being logical, though.)IT WAS FREAKING UNBELIEVABLE! What do I start with?! The writing: ohmygosh, slay me, I love writing this raw and vicious. There’s no excess. The characters? Knock me dead! They were all so well written. They breathed fire and ice and you could feel that from the first hundred pages. I’m not joking, guys. In a FEW WORDS the characters blossomed into 3D people. Gob-smacked? That about sums me up. Darrow is the narrator. He’s 16-years-old, which screams of the typical dystopian age, but he’s cast in a new light. In his hole in the ground (literally), you live hard and die young. At 16 he’s married to Eo, the love of his life. Now, sorry, but when the narrator loves and adores and worships someone…you know stuff is going to get bad for them. I wanted to scream to Darrow, “Stop loving your wife!” Which is mean of me, buuuut, he should have listened.I’ll slip in a word about the names too. Very Roman, but I loved how they weren’t typical Roman names. Sure they had Pollux, Julian, and Antonia. But there were brilliant ones like: Cassius, Eo (gosh, that is such a good name), Sevrus, Priam, Pax. Just let me take a moment to appreciate the brilliant names.The plot?! As a vivacious bookworm, I demand a good plot. I love something that’ll keep me on my toes the whole time. Since I’ve read a lot, I can guess a lot of plot twists ahead of time, which takes the glory out of a book for me. I relish a book where it feels fresh. GOSH. I was kept on my toes with this one. I confess, it was complex. Not in a detailed way, more in a everyone-has-Roman-names-and-double-identities way. In all honesty, I don’t think there were enough clues laid for the plot twists. They just socked you in the jaw. Nice, but it could have been better refined. But seriously – the ending? I didn’t know what Darrow would do. I had half a foot in each camp and the answer he chose: I died and cheered all at once. Yup, you have no idea what I’m talking about, but rest assured: the last word is RISE. (Isn’t that awesome?!) BUT (here comes Miss Raincloud), I do have to note here: this is like a more violent and psychological version of THE HUNGER GAMES by Suzanne Collins. Every other book that has used elements of THG, I’ve automatically hated. RED RISING is a total exception and it took me a while to decide why. I think it does stand apart, even if it uses a lot of the same elements. There’s Roman names and themes, there’s a type of “arena” where students basically fight-to-survive-and-dominate, and there’s a tipping point/martyr (Prime/Eo). Honestly, I think RED RISING scrapes way to close to THG for comfort. It ticks me off, but only slightly. RED RISING is definitely more violent. It puts more meaning into the killing (yeah, strike me down, but I do admit it) and psychology of human minds. I really think YA should lay off the Roman-ness, too. Overdone? Just a little now.Instead of Districts (THE HUNGER GAMES) or Factions (DIVERGENT), we have colours! Yay! I like colours! I love how the colours wore woven in (Gold being the top dog). I love the slang and culture of each colour. There is so much thought in this book. I never once thought, “Well, that wasn’t thought through well, was it?” Everything was detailed and spectacular. I’m in danger of gushing (ha. Too late, right?), so I’ll end with AHHHHHH. I needneedneed the next book. I read half this book in one sitting. My eyeballs are destroyed. It was so worth it. (Is it even legal to write this well???)

  • Melanie
    2019-01-25 23:22

    ARC provided by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.Red Rising is the oldest ARC I have on my TBR. One of my 2017 goals was to read and review it, because I always felt so much pressure when I'd think about picking it up, because this is such a beloved book in the community. In this world that takes place in our universe, mostly on Mars, everyone is subdivided into color categories based on their skill sets, income, hair color, and what last name they possess (information provided by the Red Rising Wiki page):➽ HighColors:• Golds - Rulers of society• Silvers - Financiers and businessmen• Whites - The clergy• Coppers - Administrators, lawyers and bureaucrats➽ MidColors:• Blues - Astronavigators of ships• Yellows - Doctors and scientists• Greens - Programmers and developers• Violets - The creative class such as artists• Oranges - Mechanics• Grays - Law-enforcement, security, military and other armed personnel➽ LowColors:• Browns - Servants• Obsidians - "Monstrous race only bred for war"• Pinks - Pleasure slaves• Reds - The unskilled and menial laborersRed Rising is also broken up in to three parts, and because a few friends have asked me to break the story down for them, I'm going to! I will not spoil any main plot lines, and I will try to be as vague as possible, but please do not continue reading any further if you wish to go into Red Rising completely blind! “I look at him for a moment. Words are a weapon stronger than he knows. And songs are even greater. The words wake the mind. The melody wakes the heart. I come from a people of song and dance. I don’t need him to tell me the power of words.”➽ Part I: Our main protagonist's journey starts out in the lows of the lows, because he is a Red. Darrow is the youngest HellDiver in his red colony, where he works in the mines all day, trying to make Mars livable. He for sure is the strongest and the most efficient miner, too, even though he will never receive the credit for it. But something happens that changes Darrow's life and outlook forever, forcing him to go to the surface of Mars.“I would have lived in peace. But my enemies brought me war.”➽ Part II: Darrow wakes up and meets with the Sons of Ares, and starts his transformation to enhance his body, so he can pass as a Gold and infiltrate their ranks by performing well enough at their military school, the Institute. Darrow was bitten by something when he was younger, so he and his heart are rare, but strong enough, to endure all of the surgeries. Maybe my favorite part of this book was learning about the Carver and his work. Oh, and Evey, because I loved her instantly and pictured Mercy from Overwatch and it made my fangirl thirsty heart so very happy. Anyways, Darrow goes to the Institute, performs very well, and is picked tenth out of one thousand students at the school and will now move on to the next part of their schooling.“I am the Reaper and death is my shadow.”➽ Part III: After performing a horrible and terrible act to move on to the next part of his schooling, we realize that all the different houses have pickled different people and given each group a castle. Darrow's house, House Mars, cannot decide a leader, because they are all confrontational alpha males, so they split up into four different groups. We also become aware that this is being broadcasted, and higher ups are watching to recruit the strongest players. Also, if I'm being honest, this part feels like a rape filled The Hunger Games. Like, to the point that I'm honestly surprised Suzanne Collins wasn't like, "what the fuck?"“Funny thing, watching gods realize they’ve been mortal all along.”Also, it needs to be said that there are trigger warnings for rape, sexual assault, and graphic violence, because I had no idea going into this book that there would be so much rape. I was so surprised. I feel like the book community really paints this as a YA SFF coming of age story, which I guess it is, but it is so much darker than I ever imaged. I don't give a shit that Darrow was sixteen when this book started, this is an ADULT book.Overall, I did enjoy this, actually more than The Hunger Games, but you can tell this story is so heavily influenced from The Hunger Games that it just ends up feeling bad. That parallels are consistent, and it was something that I just couldn't unsee. I also found it a little unbelievable that all these high up Golds would allow the chance of their children to be killed, especially for viewing pleasure. I understand that most have multiple kids, and this is their way to prove their worth, but I just can't imagine that they would be okay allowing their kids to be a part of this academy where there is such a high death (and rape) turnover rate. Or, at the very least, they would train every child from the time they could walk into becoming amazing warriors and never allow their children to go into the Institute so unprepared and unable to fight like so many did. I also hated how this story used rape to make Darrow look like a savior constantly. The book is brutal enough; we don't need to have the rape ploy thrown in our faces every chapter, just so Darrow can save and/or avenge all the helpless women. Also, Darrow kills because of rape constantly, and then towards the end when he gets to play judge and dish out some punishments, he finds it in his heart to make it a bonding exercise. Like, please, it's gross, tiresome, and pathetic. This book would have been leagues better without this hot mess of rape plot devices. Also, Darrow wasn't the most likable main character. I completely understand that he was only sixteen when starting his journey, so I try so very hard to cut him slack, but he makes the most questionable decisions, especially with everything he has riding on his performance. Also, if I was grieving over the love of my life, I probably wouldn't be looking at every freakin' girl I see, calling them "so beautiful" and admiring them every other chapter. Like, I get it, sixteen year old boys are horny, but it was so unnecessary and I think that I felt more impacted by Eo than Darrow ever did. Darrow felt more driven by his dick than by his rage or want for revenge, in my opinion.My favorite character was, hands down, Cassius, a friend that Darrow makes at the start of him joining the Institute. I felt for his character so much, and I felt like every action he performed was so valid. His choices where so believable, and everything he did I feel like I would have done if I was in his position. He was for sure the most realistic character to me, and I couldn't help but love him and his story arc. Like, if I continue on with Golden Son, it is 100% because of Cassius. Overall, I'm mostly just happy I finally have read this ARC copy. I did enjoy this book; I just didn't love it the way everyone else seems to. I feel like it would have had a much bigger impact on me if I hadn't already read The Hunger Games and been a part of the hype for that series. I hated the use of rape in this, and I just felt like the story did leave a lot to be desired. Like I said, this is a beloved series in the book community, so if you're at all interested I would for sure give it a shot. Blog | Twitter | Tumblr | Instagram | Youtube | Twitch

  • sana°¤°
    2019-01-22 23:16

    Initial Reaction:*screams and throws book across the room* WTF I WAS SUPPOSED TO LOVE THIS. THIS WAS SUPPOSED TO BE AS GOOD AS THE AUTHORS FACE.I am so disappointed and was not expecting to be DYING OF BOREDOM.○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●Here is my rant:I really enjoyed the beginning of this book, but when it hit around the 80 page mark, I started to lose interest and get bored. I know, for many people the first 70 or 80 pages were very boring and it got better for them after the 80 page mark. For me it was the other way around. I really wanted to love this, but I just couldn't. Darrow (our psycho, but awesome MC) is a Red, the lowest caste of the society. They live on Mars, where they work in Mine, live in shit condition, piss and sweat in their fry suits, beg for food and just live the regular shit life ya'know? So when Darrow finds out that the rest of human kind has moved on and started living in more modern world and don't piss and sweat in their fry suits, Darrow realizes that his people have been living in slavery and decides to do something about it. ※ Sounds interesting right? But it fucking wasn't! I wanted so badly to love this, but what I got was an extremely angry dude filled with hate pretending to be someone else and just trying to live like them and NOT DO ANYTHING. Like ISN'T YOU SUPPOSED TO BE TRYING TO KILL THE BAD GUYS AND TRYING TO GIVE YOUR PEOPLE A BETTER LIFE? Like, all I read about was Darrow becoming a Gold, living their life, doing what they do, and not actually trying to do something about helping the Red's. I can't even explain my thoughts properly bc I was slamming my head against the wall repeatedly, bc of this book, and lost a shitload of brain cells. ※ It was so fucking boring! (Did I already mention that?) The only time I felt like reading on was when there was a brutal death scene. It was so exciting and thrilling to read about someone dying a brutal way! (view spoiler)[Eo being the only exception, I hate Brown for killing her off. (hide spoiler)] Call me psycho, but the death and blood were the only things I liked about this book. ※ Which brings me to the death. I WANTED MORE FUCKING BRUTAL DYING AND BLOOD. My friends said that the death gets so much worse and I'm here like???? where??? when is it going to come??? Like i said, the death scenes were what I liked and i wanted more of it, but there weren't that many deaths, for me anyways. ◆The MC Darrow: I actually liked him. He was brutal, loving, filled with hate and vengeance, but also caring and afraid. It was shocking to see how him transform so quickly from a shitty life, but being caring and loving towards his wife and people, to the life of a Gold, where he becomes stronger, ruthless, and murderous. I connected to him and felt his fear for becoming this Golden beast, killing people and feeling guilty. I was actually shocked and excited when he just killed someone or beat them to the point where they couldn't move. He was awesome and probably the only character, besides Eo, that I loved!◆Also, I don't get the Sevro hype. :/Overall, this was a disappointment, the killings being the only things I liked. I will continue on with the series bc I own them and I am curious as to what happens next. Though I didn't enjoy this, I hope the next books are better.○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●○●I'm getting this baby tomorrow. So damn excited since many of my gr friends loved this. Please be as good as the authors face.

  • April
    2019-01-30 15:20

    Definitely surprised me with how good this book was.

  • maymay ☕
    2019-02-10 19:15

    Buddy read with literally everyone (except Yammy bc she's a hater): Em, Mary, Jia, Ry, Tweebs, Caitlin, Jenn, Petrik, Luna, Amber DNF @ 7%Personally, I feel thatNew Year resolutionsare just lies that people feed themselves to feel productive while they continue living their life theexactway they always had. But this year, I promised myself I would not confine myself totrashsulking when there’s so much the world has to offer.So here we are, DNFing an extremely popular book 9 days into the New Year. I tried so hard,so, so, so hardto love this book. It has been one of my most anticipated books of 2017 and I was ecstatic to start but when I actually opened the book and started reading, everything went to hell. It has taken me over5 daysday to read25 pages. 2 5 pages !!! I have almost gone intotworeading slumps because of this book. That doesNOThappen to me.Okay, so many of my friendsreallyloved this book and I’m sure it’s wonderful, IF YOU CAN GET PAST THE FIRST 150 PAGES. Info-dumping, so much info-dumping and it’s not even done in a clever way where we understand what’s going on. It’s just like “LET’S DUMP SOME MORE BACKGROUND INFORMATION ON WHY THE TEMPERATURE DROPPED TO THREE DEGREES IN SATURN EVEN THOUGH WE LIVE ON MARS.” I had ZERO idea what was going on. There was no explanation(I know, the irony, right)on what the hell a “Laurel” is, no explanation on what he did that made him think hedeservesa Laurel, and no reason for me to care. Also, I heard that the only thing I actuallylikedabout the book was ruined, so, really I see no point in trying to be optimistic here. I want to apologize to the world for giving up because Ireally, really, reallythought I could push through and make it to at least half way, but every time I open the book, I just go:Also, the rest of the squad (except those who loved it) abandoned me, so not totally my fault. :D“Man cannot be freed by the same injustice that enslaved it.”1 starI’m sorry !!!

  • Kaylin
    2019-02-07 20:27

    2 StarsOverview: ALRIGHT EVERYBODY. HOLD ON TIGHT. BECAUSE IT’S TIME FOR UNPOPULAR OPINIONSTo my all GR friends who loved this book and/or recommended it to me:I'm really glad you loved it! This just didn't work for me... Pros: This is brutal. Pierce Brown does a fantastic job of creating a treacherous and gritty world. Almost all dystopias rely on a sense of danger, but most of the characters are safe. Not here. It wasn’t just that characters could die, but there was absolutely no mercy if they did. This book truly didn’t hold back and in doing so, established its own unique voice. The blend of science-fiction and fantasy was definitely creative, even though I had problems with the execution. The science behind the terraforming and ways of sustaining life on Mars seemed well-thought out and explained well. Cons I know I’m the minority here, but I just couldn’t stand this writing. It was.so.repetitive. If I had to read the word “Bloodydamn” or “Piss” one more time I was going to throw up. Told in first-person present, the story was largely composed of short, straightforward sentences. There would be lengthy paragraphs consisting mostly of 5-6 word sentences strung together. For example: "Then something catches. My foot is jammed just underneath one of the gears near a drill finger. I gasp down air in panic. The dread rises in me. I see my bootheel melting. The first layer goes. The second bubbles. Then it will be my flesh."This should have been a really intense scene, especially since it happens early in the book. But the choppy sentences just made me feel so disconnected from the story. The sentence structure rarely varied, so everything just started to blur together and feel outrageously monotonous. It made the story feel boring, even when exciting stuff was happening. In all honesty, I wanted to DNF this before I was 50 pages in. Not only was the wording giving me headaches, but I just didn’t give a flying-flip about anyone. All my GR friends kept assuring me everything changed around the 80-100 page mark, and it certainly did--the whole story got wayyy more intense and crazy. But I still felt disconnected from the characters and then more characters were introduced… and then more. All the names were Roman and confusing and it took me forever to understand and they all just kind of melted together. Except Darrow. Who remained the absolute perfect boy who could somehow do no wrong. I’m sorry, I just don’t get it. He was straight-up Mary-Sue:- Told to stop drilling as it’s dangerous. Ends up drilling anyway, pulls off something “nobody else” could have done. Everyone makes a big deal about how special he is. (No spoilers, this all happens in the first 20 pages)- Barely learns about a rebellion but immediately signs up. Undergoes weeks of extensive and painful surgery without ever complaining. - Misses one question out of “hundreds” on his entrance exam.- Liked by almost everyone.Even worse than Darrow was his wife, Eo. Who literally only existed to motivate Darrow to action. Seriously. She had NO personality and whenever Darrow mentioned her it was just about how "beautiful" and flipping perfect she was. Then there was all this BS about how she was “just a dreamer” and couldn’t serve any purpose except motivating real heroes?? Can we please stop with these disposable female characters who exist only to motivate some bland hero into action? The fridge is full, people. I’m still not entirely sure I understood this plot. So much random crap seemed to be happening and it wasn’t really related to most anything from the beginning. And everyone had these same Roman names and I just still don't understand what the point of half the fighting was. In Conclusion I can see how others would enjoy this, as it combines elements from fantasy, dystopia and sci-fic to create a dark, fast-paced story—but the characters, sentence structure and plot just didn’t work for me.