The poverty stricken Reds are commoners, living under the rule of the Silvers, elite warriors with god-like powers.
To Mare Barrow, a 17-year-old Red girl from The Stilts, it looks like nothing will ever change.
Mare finds herself working in the Silver Palace, at the centre of those she hates the most. She quickly discovers that, despite her red blood, she possesses a deadly power of her own. One that threatens to destroy Silver control.
But power is a dangerous game. And in this world divided by blood, who will win?
Though you are reading this in February of 2015, I picked this up right around Christmas. YA Bloggers were going nuts for the book and the book I’d chosen to try and read wasn’t really doing it for me, so I decided to hop with the #RQReadAlong. And having read it, I get it. This is easily one of the better YA books I’ve read in ages. First and foremost, although there are three guys here, the relationships are well developed so that when the actual bad guy is revealed, it’s both a surprise, but not cheap. I never once during the book was going “okay, that’s the one that’s going to be she ends up with.” Good job there, Aveyard.
As for other benchmarks – such as world building – she does a good job here too. While not that revolutionary, the division between the “Reds” and “Silvers” are well described and the powers of the Silvers are fun. It’s solid-all around.
I think one of my favorite things about this book is that things don’t always go Mare’s way, decisions she makes have unintended consequences and though you know she has to survive because it’s a trilogy, it certainly didn’t come easy. I appreciate that, because in far too many of these books, victory is almost always assured.
On the downside you do have some of the usual tropes here: like the training montage, the Mean Girl Rival and the Girl from the Sticks Gets To Join Royalty, but still, it’s so solidly done that I didn’t find myself minding them and you probably won’t either.
All in all, I get the hype for this book. Not only should fans of the genre love this, but I think it’ll be a good place for people to look when wanting to dip their toes in YA for the first time or those who are still kind of side-eying the genre although. It’s so nice to be pleasantly surprised.
Verdict: Buy it