Book Review: Red Queen

Hello! Thanks for reading again, or if you are new, welcome. Today's post is about Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard. I don't really know if I can actually review this book since I didn't finish it but whatever, I'm going to review it anyway. There will be minor spoilers.

Summary: The Reds are commoners, ruled by a Silver elite in possession of god-like superpowers. And to Mare Barrow, a seventeen-year-old Red girl from the poverty-stricken Stilts, it seems like nothing will ever change. That is, until she finds herself working in the Silver Palace. Here, surrounded by the people she hates the most, Mare discovers that, despite her red blood, she possesses a deadly power of her own. One that threatens to destroy the balance of power. Fearful of Mare’s potential, the Silvers hide her in plain view, declaring her a long-lost Silver princess, now engaged to a Silver prince. Despite knowing that one misstep would mean her death, Mare works silently to help the Red Guard, a militant resistance group, and bring down the Silver regime.

Review: Let me start off by saying that this book is not horrible. It's actually pretty good and I can understand why people like it so much. However, in my opinion, this book should not be as popular as it is. And I'm going to explain why with this one sentence: It's not original.

Photo from Google Search
The first unoriginal part of this book is the main character. To me she just existed. I didn't hate her, I didn't love her and I wasn't rooting for her. There was nothing about her that made her stand out amongst the other characters besides the fact that she was a Red with superpowers. Other than that, she was just so ordinary that she was just plain boring. The thing that I hated most about the characters in this book is that it was very white. It's not that I mind that basically every character of importance is white (let me stop lying, I care a lot), it's just that I was hoping to see a fantasy story that didn't do that for once. It's one of the main reasons why I don't like Sarah J. Maas and it's one of the main reasons why I didn't like this story. I'll admit that there may have been some marginalized groups in this book that I didn't pick up on because I started to skim but for the most part, I would not say that this book is diverse in any way. Then, there are the stereotypical mean girls who only hate Mare because she breathes. Let's not forget the boys, though. There's the childhood friend, Kilorn, the dark prince, Cal, and then the baby prince, Maven. There was definitely going to be a love triangle of some form in this book.

Now, the really big reason why I didn't like this book is because almost every scene in this book came from another book. First there was a rebellion starting to happen and that could have been interesting. Then there was a corrupt kingdom and that also could have been interesting. However, they were both done unoriginally. The first example I have is when she is fighting against Evangeline because Evangeline thought it was necessary to challenge Mare to a battle so she could whoop her ass. I don't know but this scene just reminded me of the scenes in Divergent when Tris had to fight. Another example would be when Mare is with all of her tutor people but the entire time, I just kept thinking of how much those scenes reminded me of Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo and the scenes with Alina and Baghra. As a bonus, the entire summary of this book sounds like Red Rising by Pierce Brown, as pointed out by Emily May on Goodreads. To me, it felt like this book was trying to fit in instead of trying it's own thing.

There was so much potential for this book but overall, it fell flat for me. Even the plot twist, which I read after I gave up on it, didn't pique my interest. I have to say it was the most disappointing book I read in 2016. I will not be watching the movie that will come with this book, if it ever comes out, and I will not be continuing this series. However, I do recommend this book to people if they are just starting out in young adult fantasy. If you are an avid reader of it, then just skip this one.


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