The Red Queen Book Review

red queenNow that was a fantastic book! I’m writing this just after finishing it, so I’m really buzzing from how it ended, so I’m struggling to keep it spoiler free. I suppose all I have to say if you haven’t read the book is GO AND READ IT- you won’t be disappointed if you like fantasy, adventure, romance, dystopias or all of the above!

Ok, so *Spoiler Warning*- in case that wasn’t clear enough! Now I can get to the review. Honestly, I wasn’t sure if I was going to like this one. It had all the ingredients of things I’ve come to hate in YA books- a love triangle, a special snowflake main character and generic evil bad guys. On top of that, it took me a while to get into, because it was a bit slow to start and I wasn’t too invested in the characters to begin with. But there are two reasons why in the end that did not matter:

  1. It actually had decent world-building and character development
  2. OH MY GOD THE ENDING!!!

Because everyone is thinking that when they finish this book. Now, while I’ll admit, the twist was a little obvious to me from the start (I mean the guy called himself the “shadow of the flame”, for crying out loud) I was still really delighted with the way it played out. And at least Maven wasn’t called the Darkling (I’m looking at you, Shadow and Bone– now that was an obvious “twist”). Also, revealing his villainy in this way really showed his motivations in the best light. It really made him feel like a three-dimensional character and not just some *I want to take over the world cos* kind of villains (again, I’m looking at you Darkling). I also worried that unless Maven turned out to be a spy, it would have been a massive plot hole for them to keep her alive at the beginning. It just made complete sense for them to use her in this way- especially when the Queen had already read her mind- which immediately set alarm bells off in my head making me wonder how she didn’t know about Mare’s connection to the Red Guard. But thankfully, it was well thought out and completely worked, so *hats off*. I couldn’t have been more satisfied with the way it turned out.

On other matters, I liked the characters. It took me a while to warm to them, but I think Cal in particular made a great love interest, while Killorn could have been a bit more developed. I could also believe that Mare was naive enough not to figure out what the Silvers were upto, to be honest. Even though she acknowledged they were dangerous, she was a fish out of water, so it made sense that she fell for their tricks. She was also headstrong enough not to listen to anyone’s warnings, but brave enough to still be endearing. As I said earlier, most of the villains were fairly generic (the queen and Cal’s betrothed) but Maven made up for that. Other than that, Julian was the star for me! His character was deep and sweet.

It’s fairly obvious that I liked how the plot panned out- so I’ll be brief in saying that I liked how Aveyard developed the romance with Cal and showed that there were good reasons for her being reluctant about being with him aka they came from completely different sides of the tracks :p . I also thought the training montages were short and sweet- which was one of the most refreshing things to find in YA fiction these days. And I was impressed with how Aveyard showed how terrible the Red’s situation was at the beginning- particularly with the scene with Gisa at the beginning. Although, I would have preferred if they’d incorporated her coming into her powers in that scene, rather than leaving it to later to introduce her to Cal and have the pageant. I just felt like the two things were linked and could’ve been put together for a a smoother transition (although that is just the editor in me nitpicking).

Overall, it wasn’t a perfect book, but it kept me hooked the whole way through and was a thoroughly enjoyable read!

Rating 4/5 bananas

half bananahalf bananahalf bananahalf banana

So, I’m assuming if you stayed to read this, you’ve read the book (and if you haven’t- why are you still here?). Did you enjoy it? Did you see the ending coming? Let me know in the comments down below!

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25 thoughts on “The Red Queen Book Review

  1. Codie says:

    Finally, some proper world building in a dystopian novel! I swear some books just throw you in there without any info or knowledge and you’ve got that dumb face like, “WHAT IS GOING ON!” Anyway, great review and although I read a bit of the spoilers I think I’m still going to read it.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. readinginthewings says:

    I liked it too! The plot kept me happy, and I totally agree about Maven and Cal. I just wish I liked Mare more. She was so dumb and didn’t take charge at ALL. I kept wanting to scream at her to DO SOMETHING. Also, my big question is how they pulled off “her not knowing that she was silver”!? like…. have you never bled before and noticed that your blood is a different color? The silvers all seemed super smart and calculating, so I had a hard time believing that they would have taken that explanation.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Allisone Doerner says:

    I read this book I think last year and I loved it! It took me a little bit too to really get into the book, but once she actually got INTO the kingdom and also met Cal, I was hooked. Honestly, I didn’t see the Maven thing coming at all (but I also don’t like predicting what’s going to happen because I feel like I just ruin the story for myself). I thought Mare was an interesting main character because she’s not like any other main character in a young adult genre I’ve read about before. I agree with you on how she is naive and I kind of like that because that characteristic is so much more like a teenager, you know? Teenagers are head strong and rebellious, but some YA main characters you read about tend to feel unrealistic sometimes. I don’t know, just my two cents on that. I really liked your review (obvs with all my commenting heh).

    Liked by 1 person

    • theorangutanlibrarian says:

      Ah yes I totally know what you mean- I got really into this book and really enjoyed it. I also loved the Maven twist. That makes a lot of sense- knowing what’s coming can spoil it. Yeah I agree with you- I think that’s a good quality for the author to develop as well, because it leaves it open for growth. Aww thank you so much!!

      Liked by 1 person

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