Much like Scott Lynch's Gentlemen Bastard series, Leigh Bardugo's "Six of Crows" introduces readers to a group of scrappy, unlikely heroes who you canMuch like Scott Lynch's Gentlemen Bastard series, Leigh Bardugo's "Six of Crows" introduces readers to a group of scrappy, unlikely heroes who you can't help but become totally endeared to.
I'm of the belief that any book that is prefaced with intricate maps is a sure sign of a great adventure, and this book confirms that belief. The book itself (hardcopy edition) is a thing of beauty. With rich, red lining on the endpapers, a mystical cover, and delicately dyed black edging on the entire textblock, the book itself is imbued with mystery and magic.
This is a well rendered world with cheeky, memorable characters who have been bound by fate, magic, luck (for better or worse) and suffering. If you enjoy books with characters who have to achieve something that seems impossible- if you love a clever heist -if you take pleasure in a relentless adventure and a story well told..."Six of Crows" will certainly entertain and satisfy you on many levels. ...more
Red Rising is the first installment of Pierce Brown’s debut trilogy. Set on Mars in the distant (dystopian) future, we are introduced to young Darrow,Red Rising is the first installment of Pierce Brown’s debut trilogy. Set on Mars in the distant (dystopian) future, we are introduced to young Darrow, our hero, who lives in a lowly mining colony. Much like the Hunger Games, Darrow lives in an unjust society that is ruled by an elite group. Each faction in Darrow’s society is assigned a color, and each color serves a particular purpose. When Darrow suffers a terrible loss at the hands of the oppressive “sovereign Golds,” he is inspired to embark upon a harrowing journey of rebellion and revenge.
I was shocked when Darrow suffered the loss that is described in the early pages of Red Rising. I liked the way Pierce Brown began the book with such conviction; as a reader, you are immediately immersed in Darrow’s world, which is difficult to adjust to at first, but eventually becomes rewarding. I noticed how the author used descriptive language and symbolism to make the reader feel sympathy for Darrow and his fellow “Reds.”
I don’t quite understand why the author didn’t give the audience an opportunity to know certain characters on a deeper level. If I were the author, I would certainly give readers a chance to spend more time with Darrow’s loved ones; it would make me even more sympathetic to Darrow and his situation.
Much like many reviewers have, I’d compare Pierce Brown to authors like Suzanne Collins (the author of the Hunger Games) and Orson Scott Card (the author of Ender’s Game). I make this comparison because all of these authors are known for writing action-packed novels that involve dystopian futures of a sci-fi and fantasy genre. Of course, this book reminded me of Hunger Games and Divergent, especially because of the social structure that Darrow is a part of.
Darrow, the main character, is a fearsome warrior who is willing to sacrifice everything in order to exact revenge against the Golds. His character’s development is strong, straightforward, but a bit cliché. The narrative voice can sometimes seem cold and distant, but I think it matches the harsh, alien setting that Pierce Brown establishes so well.
Themes of this book are certainly revenge, social justice, war and peace, love, and good versus evil.
At times, I wish there was more relief from action scenes, especially throughout the second half of the novel. There are many battle scenes and descriptions of the strategies Darrow and supporting characters used in order to defeat one another; as a result, I became weary of the plot and became unsure of my desire to read the sequel. Still, I’m interested in Darrow’s plight and feel as though Red Rising is engaging and demonstrates qualities enough to earn a solid, respectable rating of 3½ . Since Red Rising is worthy of a rating (albeit slightly) above 3, I’ve decided to read the second book in the trilogy, Golden Son, and consider it a compelling sequel. If you enjoy books like Ender’s Game, Divergent, or The Hunger Games, I would strongly recommend the Red Rising trilogy.
I’ll leave you with an excerpt from Red Rising that I found particularly captivating. It’s a great example of Darrow’s narrative voice and desire for vengeance. I also really appreciate the fact that the author used italics (in the last line “None of them will survive) to emphasize Darrow’s anger. I hope you enjoy this excerpt:
“I would have lived in peace. But my enemies brought me war. I watch twelve hundred of their strongest sons and daughters. Listening to a pitiless Golden man speak between great marble pillars. Listening to the beast who brought the flame that gnaws at my heart. “All men are not created equal,” he declares. Tall, imperious, an eagle of a man. “The weak have deceived you. They would say the meek should inherit the Earth. That the strong should nurture the gentle. This is the Noble Lie of Demokracy. The cancer that poisoned mankind.” His eyes pierce the gathered students. “You and I are Gold. We are the end of the evolutionary line. We tower above the flesh heap of man, shepherding the lesser Colors. You have inherited this legacy,” he pauses, studying faces in the assembly. “But it is not free. “Power must be claimed. Wealth won. Rule, dominion, empire purchased with blood. You scarless children deserve nothing. You do not know pain. You do not know what your forefathers sacrificed to place you on these heights. But soon, you will. Soon, we will teach you why Gold rules mankind. And I promise, of those among you, only those fit for power will survive.” But I am no Gold. I am a Red. He thinks men like me weak. He thinks me dumb, feeble, subhuman. I was not raised in palaces. I did not ride horses through meadows and eat meals of hummingbird tongues. I was forged in the bowels of this hard world. Sharpened by hate. Strengthened by love. He is wrong. None of them will survive.” ...more