Monday, January 27, 2014

Review : Red Rising by Pierce Brown

Monday, January 27, 2014 with 20 comments

Title: Red Rising
Author: Pierce Brown
Series: Red Rising Trilogy, book 1
Publisher: Del Rey (Random House)
Publication Date: January 28, 2014
Source: received from publisher via NetGalley
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

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The war begins... Darrow is a Helldiver, one of a thousand men and women who live in the vast caves beneath the surface of Mars. Generations of Helldivers have spent their lives toiling to mine the precious elements that will allow the planet to be terraformed. Just knowing that one day people will be able to walk the surface of the planet is enough to justify their sacrifice. The Earth is dying, and Darrow and his people are the only hope humanity has left. Until the day Darrow learns that it is all a lie. Mars is habitable - and indeed has been inhabited for generations by a class of people calling themselves the Golds. The Golds regard Darrow and his fellows as slave labour, to be exploited and worked to death without a second thought. With the help of a mysterious group of rebels, Darrow disguises himself as a Gold and infiltrates their command school, intent on taking down his oppressors from the inside. But the command school is a battlefield. And Darrow isn't the only student with an agenda..

I’m kind of in awe over this book. I had no idea the things it would do to me when I picked it up. Before reading Red Rising, I didn’t hear any hype. I was totally took by surprise. After I finished I realized it had been released on NetGalley last spring and was put back up. I'm so glad I ended up requesting it when I did. It was a spur of the moment thing, I got an email from NetGalley about it, and something told me to jump on it. Thank you so much to the publisher for approving my request.

I’m a huge fan of dystopian books. There is something about this genre that does it for me but Red Rising is so much more than another dystopian novel. During my quick research before requesting Red Rising, I saw that it was compared to Hunger Games, Enders Game and also compared with Game of Thrones. Say what!?! How do you take Dystopian, Sci Fi, Fantasy and mix all that together?

Well, Pierce Brown did, and it’s a melding pot of total freaking awesomeness. I just can’t even!

There is even a little Roman Mythology thrown in there to boot! I’m just floored, really. I figured I would like Red Rising, but I never imagined it would become one of my favorite books of all time. But that’s how it should be right? They sneak up on you!

Now, there are a couple similarities to Hunger Games. Very few, but they are there. Don’t let that discourage you, because after reading Red Rising I felt like Hunger Games was written for pussy’s. No Lie. Hunger Games is one of my Favorite trilogies ever, so it takes a lot for me to say that. 

One downside to Red Rising is the Violence. It’s downright brutal. There are some cringe worthy scenes for sure, but I felt they were necessary to the story. It’s not a pretty world. It’s corrupt as shizz, those golds are crazy. Heck, everyone is crazy. I did not feel like the violence was a bad element, I enjoyed it. It made everything that much more real for me, but I can see where some will be bothered by it. So put your big girl/boy panties on because it's a hard knock life on Mars.

Oh, did I mention this takes place on Mars?!!! Well, it does.. :o) 

The beginning is a little slow, but it picked up pretty fast after you get some back story. It starts out in the mines, where you learn through Darrow how the Reds live. I was brought to tears early on and I won't give any specific details away but have your tissues in hand and ready. 

It's all necessary though, Darrow pulls from all the horrors he's lived through to survive the trials he is faced with later on. And wow, trials does not even begin to describe what goes down. 

The world building was awesome. Especially when you get to the meat of the story. I loved every single thing about this book. Darrow is not perfect. He makes mistakes. Sometimes inhumane mistakes, but deep down you know he's a good person. Sometimes you have to do bad for the better good and I felt that was portrayed perfectly here. He is such a strong character, flaws and all and I fell absolutely in love with some of the side characters. 

I cannot stress enough how much I loved Red Rising. I want everyone to read it! Please, everyone read it so we can talk about it!!!! Pretty freaking please!! lol. 

I have a good friend of mine who pre ordered it on my recommendation so I'm excited to discuss it with her after it comes out. I highly recommend this one. 

About the author:

Pierce Brown
Pierce Brown spent his childhood building forts and setting traps for his cousins in the woods of six states and the deserts of two. Graduating college in 2010, he fancied the idea of continuing his studies at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Unfortunately, he doesn’t have a magical bone in his body. So while trying to make it as a writer, he worked as a manager of social media at a startup tech company, toiled as a peon on the Disney lot at ABC Studios, did his time as an NBC page, and gave sleep deprivation a new meaning during his stint as an aide on a U.S. Senate Campaign. Now he lives in Los Angeles, where he scribbles tales of spaceships, wizards, ghouls, and most things old or bizarre. Note to the reader: Always feel free to contact him via his website, twitter, or facebook. He likes people. Except if you're a trollish person. Then he merely puts up with you for the sake of manners and propriety.

Find Pierce:

Website | TwitterFacebookGoodreads


  1. Tomorrow Tomorrow Tomorrow!!!!

    I can't wait to read this TOMORROW!!! xoxo

  2. So, April...did you love it? :P I can't believe I missed picking this one up twice, but after hearing how much everyone has loved it, I'll have to get a copy for myself. Fine by me...then I can pet that author photo. :)

    1. I did love it. <3 Couldn't you tell? And lol, he sure is pretty. *sigh* I would like a life size poster please!! Do you think Random House provides those? I'd pay top dollar!

  3. Yay, I enjoyed this one too. Jen--you need to read it *whines* I can't wait to hear what you think. April--writing was really wonderful wasn't it? I thought the middle was a bit dragg-y but overall was a really well written and brutal ride.

    1. Oh my gosh is really was and I agree the middle does drag a bit, but I still couldn't put it down. I can't wait for Jen to read this one too!

  4. What an amazing cover!
    Adding it to Goodreads now. I'm very intrigued. The Hunger Games, Ender's Game, and A Game of Thrones? All very good books! I'm glad to read that you liked it. I hope I do, too! :)

  5. This is the first time I have heard of Red Rising. I like the simplicity of the cover. Great review!

    1. It is a simple cover, which almost turned me away, because i'm a cover girl <3 But with a story like that, it could be covered in a paper bag and I'd still love it.

  6. So this one makes The Hunger Games look like a bunch of pussies, huh?? OMG, that made me laugh so hard--I had to tweet you and everything. Hi, I'm Heather, by the way:)

    Your review is actually the second one I have read and like Jen I am SO BUMMED I didn't get in on this at NG. I did request--but really late, and was denied--which sucks--but your thoughts make me want to pre-order this one too--and that's a rare thing for me. That's like only reserved for the Laini Taylor's and Tahereh Mafi's of the world, you know? So, great review--and mission accomplished:)

    1. Hi Heather!!! Your tweets made my day. <3 lol

  7. Hi April!!
    I probably got that email and thought "Mars?" and "dystopian?" and "no way!" But I'm hearing a lot of people say that this book is amazing. I will put it on my summer reading list :)

    Jen @ YA Romantics

    1. lol, yes! it sounds weird but totally works. :)

  8. I totally bypassed this on Netgalley. Now I'm sad. This sounds awesome.
    Also, the author is pretty hot. Does the book have a big picture of him on the back? Cause that would be a legit reason to buy it.

  9. Sooo many people rave about this one--I'm sort of scared to keep reading! I'm only a few chapters in at this point, but I'm enjoying it so far. I'm glad to see you liked it! But seriously, all this pressure....

    Wendy @ The Midnight Garden

  10. Oh gosh, YES! YES! I said just about the same in my review as you did. ;) I read this back in October, so I didn't hear any hype...I kind of wondered if I was the only one reading it...but, wow, I was so floored! It was brilliant. Violent and gory, but the I'm just...yup. I love this book so much.



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