Golden Son

Golden Son by Pierce Brown

Golden Son continues the stunning saga of Darrow, a rebel forged by tragedy, battling to lead his oppressed people to freedom from the overlords of a brutal elitist future built on lies. Now fully embedded among the Gold ruling class, Darrow continues his work to bring down Society from within.

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Usually, second books lag behind the first and third of a trilogy, having to do some heavy lifting that takes the shine off the magic. This is not one of those books. Golden Son manages to be every bit as engaging, magical, and just incredible as Red Rising.

Much like Red RisingGolden Son drops us straight into the action without apology. I had to read the first two chapters very carefully to understand what was going on and to convince myself I hadn’t suffered amnesia since reading the first book and that no, I don’t know who any of these other characters are. But by chapter three I had the rhythm back and was hopelessly sucked in.

What makes Red Rising different from most trilogy series is its ambition. Usually, our three book structure looks like this: Book 1: presentation of status quo that needs to be upended, presentation of major players, first battle Book 2: preparations for final battle, minor battles, major focus on character development Book 3: major final battle that upends the status quo, wrap up character development. Golden Son is different because we’re provided with another battle that keeps the energy level up. I’m halfway through the final book Morning Star as I write this so I can say that the Red Rising series’ three book structure looks like this: Book 1: presentation of status quo that needs to be upended, presentation of major players, major battle Book 2: status quo upended, major battle, character development Book 3: major battle to decide the fate of the status quo, wrap up character development. In short, the story structure of a typical three book series has been sped up, yet Brown still manages to do a bang-up job in the character development department.

The final betrayal, twist, and revelation of Golden Son is quite powerful and not one I saw coming. I just have to say, bravo Pierce Brown. You have written an incredible series.

 

 

Red Rising

By Pierce Brown

Darrow is a Red, a member of the lowest caste in the color-coded society of the future. Like his fellow Reds, he works all day, believing that he and his people are making the surface of Mars livable for future generations.

Yet he spends his life willingly, knowing that his blood and sweat will one day result in a better world for his children.

But Darrow and his kind have been betrayed. Soon he discovers that humanity already reached the surface generations ago. Vast cities and sprawling parks spread across the planet. Darrow—and Reds like him—are nothing more than slaves to a decadent ruling class.

Inspired by a longing for justice, and driven by the memory of lost love, Darrow sacrifices everything to infiltrate the legendary Institute, a proving ground for the dominant Gold caste, where the next generation of humanity’s overlords struggle for power. He will be forced to compete for his life and the very future of civilization against the best and most brutal of Society’s ruling class. There, he will stop at nothing to bring down his enemies… even if it means he has to become one of them to do so.

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Since I live in San Diego, last year I went down to Comic-Con to see what free stuff I could do or pick up. Not much, really. But as I was walking, someone handed me a free book from a box. This book in fact. I accepted it, but figured it was some badly-written indie book I’d end up donating. Lo and behold, when I got home I discovered it was this amazing best-seller!

Red Rising was awesome! I’ve been describing it as Hunger Games meets Game of Thrones meets The Martian. I’m sure there are better comparisons out there, but this is what I’m working with.

After about 50 pages in, this book had me hooked and didn’t let go. I started this book the night before I got sick and spent the next day on the couch sick and reading this book. It’s a long one so I probably read 75% that day and then the rest the following day.

It’s gripping, it’s expansive, it’s exciting, it’s violent, it’s heartbreaking, it’s imaginative, it’s a hell of a good time.

I’m looking forward to getting my hands on the second book, Golden Son soon.

And I sincerely hope a movie or tv show is in the works for this series.