The Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard is a post-apocalyptic, Sci-Fi, type of read – but also has a touch of a supernatural element. Thankfully not in the ghost-zombie type of way - I'm so tired of zombies.
The best way I can think to describe it is a cross between The Hunger Games series and The Selection series. After finishing it, I still think this is true. The difference is because of the supernatural element and how it comes into play.
We learn quickly there are two types of races – Reds and Silvers. Red are “normal” in the sense they are just human, barely scraping by to make a living, forced to go to war, live in the shantytown parts of a city called Norta, and they bleed red – this is important. The Silvers are the “special” race. They are born with various powers such as the ability to disappear, create fire from nothing, or read minds and control people. The Silvers are wealthy, never go to war, live in the most beautiful areas of Norta, and they bleed silver - literally.
Mare Barrow, the heroine of the story, finds herself caught between these two worlds in the most unusual circumstance, that sends her directly into the path (and palace) of the royal family – all Silvers of course. Only a few know her secret and the King and Queen want to keep it that way. I’m not going to spoil the story for you and tell you what that secret it is – you will have to read it to find out – but I have already given a hint or two.
Mare doesn’t even understand at first the full reasons as to why her world is being turned upside down until she meets a faction of Reds called The Scarlet Guard. They are a group of rebels who are demanding equality and in sometimes very dangerous and deadly ways. Mare finds herself caught between the royal family and their staff, some with whom she develops a very close relationship, and The Scarlet Guard who are fighting for everything she wants her and her family’s life to be. But is she really a pawn, or is she playing both sides?
Overall I really loved the story, loved Mare Barrow, and waited forever for book five! I bought all books at once on my Kindle, always a money saver even though this one in particular is very expensive, for $48.96, so look for that instead of purchasing them one by one. The price has jumped significantly in the last couple years because of course, a movie is being made but this has been the rumor for years. We do know the movie rights were purchased by Universal Pictures back in 2016, but so far - nothing that I can find. If you can find an accurate update - let me know.
In order, the books are:
1. Red Queen
2. Glass Sword
3. Queen Song (companion novella, 55 pages)
4. Steel Scars
5. Broken Throne
As always, let me know if you've read the series or plan to!