Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard | Book Review

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard | Book ReviewRed Queen by Victoria Aveyard
Series: Red Queen Trilogy #1
Published by Harper Collins on February 10th 2015
Genres: Fantasy & Magic, Love & Romance, Royalty, Young Adult
Pages: 400
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher
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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?


RedQueenTourBanner1 (1)

It’s been awhile since I really anticipated and got excited for books. I mean, sure I know about upcoming releases but with sensory overload when it comes to choices, it takes a lot for something to be on my MUST HAVE IT NOW RADAR. Friends,Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard has this cover that just immediately caught my attention. First, off bloody crown which is totally symbolic to the book because the color of blood matters. Second, there’s the tagline which is ‘POWER IS A DANGEROUS GAME’ which makes me think of that Game of Thrones trailer where what’s his name is all ‘power is a curious thing’ and then Seven Devils by Florence And The Machine starts playing. I kind of expected to hear FATM when I opened this book. So yes, with great shallow reasons, I was over the moon to read this book. Y’all, I inhaled Aveyard’s debut. Straight up.

Okay, so The Red Queen is being compared to Graceling and The Selection in blurbs, which I am here to say this book is it’s own beast. Yeah, it’s fantasy and there’s royals which okay some similarities. However, Aveyard’s book is about this girl named Mare Barrow who lives in a world where there are two different types of people – those with Silver Blood and those with Red Blood. People who have silver blood have magical gifts like strength or mind reading, etc. People with red blood do not. Anyways, Mare is a thief and her family lives in poverty pretty much. So, one day she picks the wrong person’s pocket, but luckily that lands her in the palace where she becomes a servant — this is actually sort of a good thing. However, as with all books, good things can’t last otherwise it would be a boring book. Impossibly, Mare has powers of her own and she’s pulled into some courtly intrigues.

I think if Mare was a real life person, I would want to be her friend. She’s loyal to the end, even when it puts her in danger. She’s actually a great friend. Further, she has these convictions and acts on them. You see, she ends up engaged to one person and while she is attracted to another person, she doesn’t really act on it because she is loyal and a good person. I mean, she can be a bit trusting and naive, but that just makes her more interesting. She’s certainly not a boring blank canvas. If you’re into characters with strong personalities, you’ll like Mare Barrow, I think. Also — she handles her life circumstance change quite admirably.

If you’re in the market to read this book for the romance, I think you might be disappointed. I mean, I didn’t think there were a whole lot of swoons in Red Queen. Like, the kissing is pretty minimal. To me, more of the focus was on Mare’s survival and navigation of court. I am ALL ABOUT THAT, but some of you are not and I just want to put that out there. Furthermore, the world this book is set in is actually pretty interesting. I liked learning about the different powers people had and how those with red blood compensate with technology but you know, that’s sort of hidden from the silvers. Aveyard’s world in Red Queen is vast and I can’t wait to explore more of it when the sequels come out.



Victoria Aveyard is a screenwriter/YA author who likes books and lists. This site is the nexus of my universe.
Her book RED QUEEN will be published Winter 2015 from HarperTeen at HarperCollins. She’s repped by the incomparable Suzie Townsend at New Leaf Literary & Media, Inc.
The genres she’s into include YA, Fantasy, Historical, Adventure, Apocalyptic – if people are dying, she’s buying.


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About April (Books&Wine)

April is in her 30s and created Good Books And Good Wine. She works for a non-profit. April always has a book on hand. In her free time she can be found binge watching The Office with her husband and toddler, spending way too much time on Pinterest or exploring her neighborhood.


  1. While I certainly see a lot of potential in Red Queen, it just didn’t wind up appealing to me as much as I’d hoped it would! I thought it felt too similar to a few other novels I’d read, so that nagged at me a bit. I’m glad that it was a title you were excited about and that you really enjoyed though!
    Alexa S. recently posted..All You Need is LoveMy Profile

  2. I bought this one when it came out ASAP. I have so many books in front of it, but I am thrilled to get to it.

    I hate it when they compare books to other books. Yeah, it might attract some of the fans of other books, but it really doesn’t allow the book to stand on its own merits.

  3. I’m excited for Red Queen because I only recently really got into YA fantasy. So now I’m on a read-all-the-fantasy-books kick!
    Marie recently posted..Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas | Book ReviewMy Profile

  4. I’ve been hearing so much about this book and even though I’m usually not a huge fan of the “navigating the royal court” plots, I may try this one out.
    Sarah Nicolas recently posted..Deleted Scene: ANOMALY by Tonya Kuper @tonyakuperMy Profile


  1. […] read Good Books and Good Wine’s review of Red Queen, click here. Aveyard’s debut novel Red Queen is available in stores and online at Barnes and Noble or […]

  2. […] Good Books and Good Wine’s review: “Aveyard’s world in Red Queen is vast and I can’t wait to explore more of it when the sequels come out.” […]

  3. […] Good Books and Good Wine – ★★★★ […]

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