Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard was one of five books on my May TBR, also fitting that month’s ‘monthly motif’ by being set in a sci-fi/dystopian world. When this novel was first published in 2015 it was extremely popular, but I of course have only just read it now and thought that it would still be interesting to share my opinion of the novel for anyone yet to get round to it or who perhaps missed the period of its popularity.
I went into Aveyard’s debut novel expecting to like it a lot- I wasn’t disappointed. The novel, for those who don’t know, is set in a society divided into Whites (people with some sort of supernatural ability and the most privileged within the society) and Reds (powerless and usually living in poverty, these people serve the Whites) in a time of constant war and inequality. Mare, the protagonist, is a Red girl who quickly discovers through the novel that she is a lot more powerful than she believed herself to be.
Overall I found the novel very fast paced and thrilling, the unique world and fascinating powers of its inhabitants easily drawing readers in. The characters of the novel were interesting and varied, even those with the same background, and as the narrative progressed this meant I experienced really strong emotional attachment. Luckily for me, I started caring about the characters so much just before the build up, and all of the bad things to follow, meaning this novel was extremely stressful for me (but in the best way 😉 ). The only slight flaw I had with the book was the slightly repetitive writing style- where strong lines were shaped to carry all of the impact (I felt in some chapters this was overdone)- but this was quickly justified. The writing is very impressive considering this is a debut novel so capable of gaining complete attention and investment, and I found this style was supported by the increasing amount of action so the perspective fit the narrative well.
To sum up I enjoyed this novel immensely. I am however wary of continuing with this story- I’m pretty sure I’ve only heard negative opinions on its development and I don’t want to ruin the characters or first novel for myself. If anyone does enjoy the rest of the series I would be very interested to know your thoughts as I’m still toying with the idea of reading more (feel free to leave a comment). Thanks for reading!