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Red Queen (Red Queen, #1)
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New Fairy Tales > "Red Queen" May 2015 Group Read

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message 1: by Heidi (new)

Heidi Garrett (heidi_g) | 553 comments I picked up this book from the library Friday and will start reading it at the end of this week.

Anyone else?


message 2: by Shanna (new)

Shanna | 36 comments I just put it on hold but it may be a while. I'm finishing up Tiger Lily this weekend. :) I'm excited for this book! It looks awesome.


message 3: by Lisa (new)

Lisa | 254 comments I have it - bought it last week, but don't know when I will be able to start reading it.


Rachmi  | 117 comments I've read this one two months ago, I think. So I won't read it again with you as I didn't quite like it, but I'll join the discussion :)


message 5: by Kajal (new) - added it

Kajal I just picked it up! Will start reading it soon


message 6: by Heidi (new)

Heidi Garrett (heidi_g) | 553 comments Ooh, sounds like we're going to have a great discussion! My husband and I will be celebrating our 17th anniversary tomorrow with a little trip:) so I'll probably start reading this when we get back! I'm intrigued.


message 7: by Lisa (new)

Lisa | 254 comments Happy Anniversary, Heidi! Hope you have a wonderful trip.


message 8: by Heidi (new)

Heidi Garrett (heidi_g) | 553 comments Lisa wrote: "Happy Anniversary, Heidi! Hope you have a wonderful trip."

Thank you, Lisa. I'm looking forward to a little getaway!


message 9: by Heidi (new)

Heidi Garrett (heidi_g) | 553 comments Okay, so this is really goofy but i love the new author pic i just posted on goodreads cause my husband photobombed it, heehee. Makes me smile huge whenever I see it...he's pretty much my <3!


message 10: by Megan (new) - added it

Megan Boutin I own it and I'm hoping to start it very soon


message 11: by Heidi (new)

Heidi Garrett (heidi_g) | 553 comments Megan wrote: "I own it and I'm hoping to start it very soon"

Yay!!!


Diana McMinn (CraftyRougarou) | 4 comments I just started red queen...really like it!!!#!


message 13: by Heidi (new)

Heidi Garrett (heidi_g) | 553 comments Diana wrote: "I just started red queen...really like it!!!#!"

Awesome. I'm going to start reading it tonight!


Diana McMinn (CraftyRougarou) | 4 comments I read this book in 2 days..yea it was that good and I am already wanting the next one to come out. it flowed nicely and had a good plot full of intrigue.


message 15: by Heidi (last edited May 09, 2015 10:50AM) (new)

Heidi Garrett (heidi_g) | 553 comments Diana wrote: "I read this book in 2 days..yea it was that good and I am already wanting the next one to come out. it flowed nicely and had a good plot full of intrigue."

I'm about 25% through and finding it easy to read. Very action-filled plot. So far, I really love (view spoiler)

Aveyard is also a screenwriter and I think this shows as considerable strength in her pacing and plot.


Diana McMinn (CraftyRougarou) | 4 comments I feel like it's not a retelling but there could be a fairy tale like this..i did feel a lil like it was cinderella at parts( humble beginnings then going to the palace,into royalty)..but i loved it overall..and there's more to come in the series.


message 17: by Heidi (new)

Heidi Garrett (heidi_g) | 553 comments Diana, yes, it is kind of an upside down Cinderella;) Okay... so... there is a lot of movement/action in the story and the visuals are strong. At this point (75%) in I'm finding minimal characterization and some issues with the plot. Even with all the sensational elements I'm finding I'm not really engaged with the story. So...I've gone on a review hunt, hehe. I do that when I'm not having quite the response I expected to while reading a book. Derivative seems to be an issue with some reviewers. In the beginning I thought of the Hunger Games and farther in, I keep thinking of The Bone Season with the way the society is structured and named. That being said, all stories borrow from others, i.e. I've recently gotten into Gothic Literature and it's history, and was fascinated that the first portrait to come to life (walk out of the frame!) was in the first gothic novel, The Castle of Otranto. If you remember J.K. Rowling used this to wonderful effect at Hogwart's. So...I'm struggling to define what makes a trope: a commonly recurring literary device, motif, cliche, feel fresh and integrated into a story vs. that word "derivative." I did sneak a peek at Rachmi's review and she makes an excellent point about fantasy vs. dystopia.


message 18: by Megan (new) - added it

Megan Boutin only read a bit and its okay. its really cheesy so far in my opinion.. (view spoiler)


message 19: by Lisa (new)

Lisa | 254 comments Only gotten to chapter 4, but am enjoying the tale so far. I agree with Heidi in the fact that the society does have a "Hunger Games" feel.


Diane | 41 comments I started this one yesterday and am also enjoying it. It's definitely an easy and fast read (not like Spindle's End, omg remember how that one slogged along?!?!) but while I am enjoying the story and the characters something is just not catching me. Maybe it's going TOO fast?! Something is keeping it in the "like it" and not "love it" category for me and I've not figured out what yet.

That said, now I'm going to go hurry up and get back to reading it before I have to cook dinner! :)


Rachmi  | 117 comments Aside the fantasy vs dystopia that Heidi mentioned. I also have many problems regarding of the story and the characters. I agree with Heidi about the derivative, to me the story felt like everything all at one. I know I cannot avoid the similarities as it's quite impossible to read a truly brand new story, but at least I want something new, even if it's just a teeny tiny thing, that makes it stand out among other stories, or I feel like it's a refreshing story. Unfortunately I didn't get it in Red Queen.

And the character, especially Mare. She supposed to be a kick-ass character, well she leads me think that she is a kick-ass heroine in early chapters, but I only got a reckless one. I couldn't believe when she (view spoiler) in chapter 5, or so, I think. It didn't make sense to me, hence I didn't buy her story anymore. It's just too bad since it's still in early chapter and I have to admit it interfered my mood to read the rest of the story which made me quite hard to engage with it.


message 22: by Heidi (last edited May 12, 2015 11:57AM) (new)

Heidi Garrett (heidi_g) | 553 comments Great discussion here!

Megan, cheesy in your opinion:) What are some of the fairy tale retellings and or fantasy, dystopian you've really enjoyed? Just respectfully curious.

Lisa, I've found the beginning to be strongest part so far. But I've set it aside to finish it this weekend when I have more reading time.

Diane, haha! Yes, I remember Spindle's End! Also Bitter Greens was kind of a tough read. As far as Red Queen goes, the mechanics of the read is: easy read in my opinion, too.

Rachmi, Again, you made a great observation about dystopian vs. fantasy. I honestly didn't have such a clearcut delineation until I read your review, so thank you! As far as what makes something feel derivative vs. fresh, I'm thinking maybe it's the characters? I've kind of been thinking about this, and I realize my engagement in the book waned after (view spoiler)


message 23: by Megan (new) - added it

Megan Boutin Well Heidi, I liked The Beast Within by Serena Valentino (the beasts story from beauty and the beast), the 5th wave series ( I don't know if it's classified as dystopian), Percy Jackson (fantasy sorta)... I haven't read many since I'm just kind of getting into those genres


Rachmi  | 117 comments @Heidi, thank you! I often bring that dystopian vs fantasy talk to my friends whenever we read dystopian stories but they were all like, "shut up just read the book and enjoy it! It's fiction, it doesn't have to make sense" But as you can tell, I disagree with them :)

As for Red Queen, I'm with you about the character. I think (view spoiler)


Rachmi  | 117 comments Megan wrote: "Well Heidi, I liked The Beast Within by Serena Valentino (the beasts story from beauty and the beast), the 5th wave series ( I don't know if it's classified as dystopian), Percy Jackson (fantasy so..."

I really like Percy Jackson, for me it's the closest retelling of Greek mythology for children/YA I've read so far. I haven't read The Beast Within and 5th Wave, though. Will check them out later :)


message 26: by Heidi (new)

Heidi Garrett (heidi_g) | 553 comments Megan, I added the Beast Within to my TBR! I haven't read any Percy Jackson yet... hmmm.... I probably should, lol. Let's see some of my favorites have been: Little Big by John Crowley and Of Love and Other Demons by Gabriel Garcia Marquez... that's a fairy tale, lol. Also, I keep thinking The Story Sister's by Alice Hoffman. None of those are "traditional" fairy tales but I have to say, they are to me in essence fairy tales and I love the unique and refreshing sensibilities brought to the tale.

Rachmi, I enjoy books more when they make sense too!

So, I finished Red Queen. Although I liked the end better than the middle, my overall assessment didn't really change. It was an ok read for me.


message 27: by Lisa (new)

Lisa | 254 comments So much to comment on! I think I'll make this first comment just on the other books that have been mentioned. I also haven't read The Beast Within, so will have to add that to my TBR list too. Anything Beauty and the Beast will always go on my list. Unfortunately, I seem to keep forgetting that I have that nice tool here on Goodreads! I absolutely LOVE the Percy Jones series and the secondary series that goes along with it. As Rachmi stated, the first set is the closest retelling of Greek mythology I have found, and the second set throws in the Roman side. I also really like his Egyptian series. Hmmm, someone would get the impression that I like Rick Riordan's writings. lol Honestly, he is one author that I generally buy his new book as soon as it is released. Never heard of The Story Sisters either, so going to have to check that one out.


message 28: by Lisa (new)

Lisa | 254 comments OK now to comment on Red Queen. I finished it Saturday and I really enjoyed the book. As I can't remember how to do the spoilers and don't want to look it up right now (being lazy and have time constraints) some of my comments will be cryptic. I agree with Rachmi's spoiler about chapter 5 to some extant. However, considering the emotional upheaval, I can understand her actions. We all do things that we normally wouldn't do when we really aren't thinking straight. I actually enjoyed the fact that throughout the entire book, I was never sure who Mare should really trust. As for the character of Kilhorn, I didn't like him from the very first introduction of the character, and my opinion did not change throughout the book. I did love the surprise at the very end of the book, and it makes me look forward to future books that I am sure will be in this series.


message 29: by Heidi (new)

Heidi Garrett (heidi_g) | 553 comments Lisa, I'm glad to hear you enjoyed it! The surprise worked for me, what didn't work was (view spoiler)


message 30: by Lisa (new)

Lisa | 254 comments I wondered the same thing, Heidi, but didn't allow it to spoil my enjoyment of the overall tale. I think I really kind of suspected what was going on all along.


message 31: by Heidi (new)

Heidi Garrett (heidi_g) | 553 comments Lisa wrote: "I wondered the same thing, Heidi, but didn't allow it to spoil my enjoyment of the overall tale. I think I really kind of suspected what was going on all along."

I always love hearing how others respond to story. As an author who constantly studies craft I find that I'm both more generous and more critical in my readings! When an author finesses something that I know is really hard to do, it just makes me dizzy with joy! The lack of attention to a major plot detail, Elara's wicked ability to read minds, which could have been executed with a couple of sentences or small scene was just disappointing to me:( Although for me the bigger drawback was not being able to engage with the characters in spite of the dazzling plot and strong visuals. It wasn't a bad read, and I hold in mind it was a strong debut.


message 32: by Diane (last edited May 21, 2015 10:47AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Diane | 41 comments Diane wrote: "...but while I am enjoying the story and the characters something is just not catching me. Maybe it's going TOO fast?! Something is keeping it in the "like it" and not "love it" category for me and I've not figured out what yet."

that's what I wrote in my initial comment about this book and that's pretty much how I ended up. I whooshed right through it, so I enjoyed it enough to do that, but I never really felt engaged. Part of that, I think, is because it *did* feel derivative in a lot of places and I found myself thinking "wait, i've read this before...." even in instances where I couldn't exactly pinpoint what was familiar/repetitive about it. So I think some of that kept me from fully appreciating the characters as who they were; I kept having the feel of them being a conglomerate of characters I'd already read about.

I also completely agree with Rachmi about the (view spoiler).

So, that bothered me.

And then for some reason I never engaged with any of the characters really deeply. I could see where I was *supposed* to feel sympathy, feel liking, feel pity, whatever it was... I just never did. It's not that I didn't like them, because I did. It's more that (view spoiler).

But all that said I found it entertaining. I guess that's it. It was entertaining but not heart-grabbing.


message 33: by Heidi (new)

Heidi Garrett (heidi_g) | 553 comments Diane wrote: "But all that said I found it entertaining. I guess that's it. It was entertaining but not heart-grabbing."

Pretty much felt the same.


message 34: by Shanna (new)

Shanna | 36 comments Ok! So I am just now chiming in because I've only just now begun to read it. I had to wait for ages for it to come in at the library! I am only in chapter one right now as I just started it a couple nights ago right before bed and haven't gotten a chance to get back to it yet. I fully intend to read lots more on my day off and this weekend when I have off. I will read the comments and chime in more probably closer to the end of the month. :)


message 35: by Heidi (new)

Heidi Garrett (heidi_g) | 553 comments Shanna wrote: "I will read the comments and chime in more probably closer to the end of the month. :)"

Look forward to hearing your thoughts whenever they come!


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