74 of 84 people found the following review helpful
Dark, violent, and really intersting futuristic fantasy. I could barely put it down.,
This review is from: Red Rising (Hardcover)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Program (What's this?)
If you took a little Lord of the Flies, a little Hunger Games, and a little Hogwarts Academy, then mixed it up with some Roman history and set it hundreds of years in the future you might come up with this book. With all the "borrowed" elements one might think it would feel a little "been there, read that" but that would be wrong. It took a little while at the beginning for me to get into the story, but once it kicked into gear, I could barely put it down.
The story is set on the planet Mars in a caste-driven society where your entire role in life is determined by the caste (denominated by color) into which you are born. Children are often genetically (or otherwise) modified to suit their caste status and be easily identifiable by color. The Reds are at the bottom, slaves forced to live and mine deep beneath the surface for a necessary substance. They live short lives of hardship and oppression (certain songs and dances carry a death sentence), but are unaware of the lies they've been told.
Darrow is a young Red miner, married to Eo until she is killed by the government for a small act of rebellion. Then everything in his life changes and the story really starts when Darrow is recruited by a revolutionary group to infiltrate the ruling Gold society. The first step is to be accepted at the Institute where the elite Gold young people are trained for leadership.
I don't want to give away any more of the story because it is so much better to read it without knowing what is going to happen next. I have to warn you that there is a lot of violence in the book. The level of brutality makes it often hard to remember that most of the characters are only teens/young adults.
This book is not in the Young Adult category, but I could see teens wanting to read it, especially guys, because most of the characters are teens. Parents who monitor their teens reading, especially younger teens, need to be mindful of the violence, though it is likely no worse than they see in video games and television. Even so, I wouldn't recommend it for younger teens. The swear words are mostly made up for the book, being things like "bloodydamn," and "piss." There are some "off stage" rapes but no sex scenes.
As I said above, once the book got moving, I could barely put it down. This is the first part of a trilogy and I cannot wait for the next book.
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Showing 1-4 of 4 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Feb 28, 2014 10:39:00 AM PST
W. Lotus says:
I'm not sure why reviewers feel the need to synopsize the plot of novels rather than simply sharing their impressions and insights.
But if you need to do so, please be considerate enough to NOT reveal important elements of the story!
I was reading the sample that Amazon provided, but after seeing your review, what would be the point of ordering it?
Isn't the purpose of reading a fantastic new novel to be surprised and excited as the plot unfolds? Otherwise, why enrich the author
and Amazon when I can just read your 'reviews' and not bother with the the actual novel?
If you can't seem to restrain yourself from ruining it for others, there's always the polite caveat: SPOILER ALERT!
In reply to an earlier post on Feb 28, 2014 11:40:59 AM PST
Sandy Kay says:
There is so much more to the book than what I put in my review -- and that is the point of ordering the book. If you think my review is a spoiler, then you are seriously underestimating the book. I can't speak for the other reviews, but I don't think I included any more than what is in the Amazon catalog page. I hate spoilers in reviews and try to be very careful not to include them. Please let me know what you think I put in my review that renders the need to read the book unnecessary or otherwise requires a spoiler tag.
In reply to an earlier post on Feb 28, 2014 12:26:12 PM PST
W. Lotus says:
Hi Sandy, and thanks for your thoughtful reply.
I don't mean to imply the comment about Eo was a complete spoiler, but sort of a giveaway
(not really a biggie though).
Anyway, after reading the sample I was a little ambivalent about continuing, so that's why I was checking out the reviews again.
And now you've gone and convinced me to give it a try, so thank you, and my apologies if I was a little crabby in my original comment (might have been a little low blood sugar!)
I think I'll read some of your other reviews as well.
In reply to an earlier post on Feb 28, 2014 12:31:18 PM PST
Sandy Kay says:
I totally understand low blood sugar! I didn't think the comment about Eo was a spoiler because it was in the letter from the publisher inserted as the first page in the Advance Readers Copy I was sent. So it seemed that the publisher didn't think it was a spoiler and seemed safe to include. I hope you read the book -- it starts out a little slow, just to establish what life for the Reds is like, but when it kicked into gear I really could barely put it down. I can't wait for the next book to come out!
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