Saturday, July 9, 2016

Red Rising~Pierce Brown | Review

Title: Red Rising (Red Rising #1)
Author: Pierce Brown
Genre: Sci-fi dystopia
Length: 382 Pages (Hardcover)
Release: January 2014
My Rating: 3.5/5 Stars

 First of all, let's just say that I went into this book with slightly high expectations. I know a lot of people who have read and loved it, so I was hoping that I would too. In the beginning, I wasn't so sure.

This book had a very slow start for me. It wasn't so much that there weren't things happening, because there definitely were, but I felt like I was being told what I was supposed to think, instead of things just happening and letting me form my own opinions. I also found Darrow, the first person narrator, to be cocky and full of himself in a way that I did not like. I felt like I was being told that I had to like Eo, Darrow's wife, because she was important. But I didn't really feel that much for her.

One of my biggest issues with this novel was the fact that up until around the halfway point, I didn't really care about any of the characters. Sure I understood that Darrow was fighting for a good cause (hopefully they're good) and all, but I couldn't really get behind Darrow as a character. And for me, I have to love the characters in order for a book to really be great. At the halfway point this started to change. Even Darrow grew on me somewhat. I started to enjoy more of the characters and actually get invested in what was going on.

I'm not sure that Darrow really changed that much as a character, or if my reading outlook changed, but I did actually grow rather fond of him by the end. I think I understood him more and felt more of a connection, which for most of the novel I felt was too forced. It didn't allow me to develop a liking, it just told me I should like him because he was fantastic. I also really enjoyed Mustang and how she and Darrow interacted with each other. There relationship was slow and hard and I loved the trust that started to form as they took care of each other. I also really enjoyed Sevro, when he was around. He was strange, but interesting. The rest of the characters each added a layer to the story, with varying degrees of success.

This novel is definitely not for the faint of heart. I knew going in that it would be somewhat violent, but it was much more than I had anticipated, for some reason. It wasn't overly descriptive with the violence, but there was a lot of it. Darrow lives in a brutal world and there were a lot of elements reminiscent of other loved dystopian books. Just with more outright violence, in many cases.

I was not a huge fan of the writing in this book. I did feel that it improved as the story progressed, but again, it took a while for me to appreciate it. Once I was reading and got a ways in though I was rather addicted to the story and wanted to know what happened. I am looking forward to finishing off the trilogy in the near future.

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