[Review] Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

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Graceling meets The Selection in debut novelist Victoria Aveyard’s sweeping tale of seventeen-year-old Mare, a common girl whose once-latent magical power draws her into the dangerous intrigue of the king’s palace. Will her power save her or condemn her?

Mare Barrow’s world is divided by blood—those with common, Red blood serve the Silver- blooded elite, who are gifted with superhuman abilities. Mare is a Red, scraping by as a thief in a poor, rural village, until a twist of fate throws her in front of the Silver court. Before the king, princes, and all the nobles, she discovers she has an ability of her own.

To cover up this impossibility, the king forces her to play the role of a lost Silver princess and betroths her to one of his own sons. As Mare is drawn further into the Silver world, she risks everything and uses her new position to help the Scarlet Guard—a growing Red rebellion—even as her heart tugs her in an impossible direction. One wrong move can lead to her death, but in the dangerous game she plays, the only certainty is betrayal.

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[“Anyone can betray anyone”]

Red Queen was a book that bravery, loyalty and faith were beaten but cruel betrayal. It’s is quite impressive how many life lessons this book teaches us. There is not always a happy end and that’s because this is how life works.

Writing style

It’s been a while since the last time I was that satisfied. Everything was flawless. The transition from thoughts to dialogue and from physical description to action were perfect. Everything made sense and the story was easy to follow. There was nothing confusing about any scenes and they were detailed enough to satisfy my fantasy and not tire my brain. There was ballance between Mare’s thoughts, feelings and action.

Plot/World building

While the world building was unique and intruiging, the plot was a bit boring and slow. That’s why my rating is minus two stars. Let me explain more.

 There is this dystopian universe were silver-bloods are creatures with powers and red-bloods are simple, lower class people. We get to see both enviroments and experience how both castes are living. The differences, sadly, are big and while the silver-bloods enjoy a good life, the red-bloods suffer and live like servants. So basically the Reds are trying to survive their hunger and the war and the Silvers only care about balls and dresses and politics. Then there’s this twist and a particular Red, Mare, seems to possess a gift that makes her as good as a silver and that’s how the story begins. A few rebellious Reds form the Scarlet Gaurd and they try to start a revolution.

These things were exciting and I was thrilled to read more but for about 70% of the book I was reading about Mare’s life in the castle. When I tried to adjust with how slow paced the book was I decided to focus on her romance but I was disappointed once again. Maven was everywhere and I disliked him since the very beginning. I thought Cal was going to be but we were just reading about Maven. Ok of course I admit that there were a few interesting scenes here and there that kept me going and then I reached the last 20% of the book and then everything happened. There was the twist I needed and finally some actual action. The last part of the book was the whole story and it wasn’t exactly what I was hoping for but at least it was realistic and just like what I said before bot every story has a happy end.


Mare was actually a pleasant character and I liked her. She was easy to relate and root for her. She suffered a lot and she gave up everything so that her family could live better. Because she is a human being, she is flawed and sometimes makes bad decisions but who doesn’t? She tried to fight for her rights and save all Reds from the Silvers. She put her faith on the wrong people and as excpected she was betrayed. She also allowed herself to lose the battle about love because she was naive but none of these matter because she could only think of her family. I am glad that the book showed as how important is the bond among family members and glorified the family love.

Cal and Maven are the two basic male leads. They’re brothers and they both have their eyes on our Mare. It was annoying that there was once again love triangle but at least it wasn’t the problem. Mare was bethrothed to Maven and Cal chose to marry Evangeline. Nobody tried to steal noone and there were no stupid fight between the brothers for Mare. There was the forbidden love but it was just there so it didn’t bother me at all. Things had a flow. Cal was a ruthless soldier the perfect heir to the throne and everyone was looking up to him, expecting him to be a great ruller. He was indeed prepared to do anything to keep his kingdom safe as it is, including not to show mercy to the Reds. Maven on the other hand was living in his brother’s shadow and he was kind and ready for a change. He was friendly to Mare and tried to help her through everything.


It wasn’t a bad book and I enjoyed it a lot. I was just expecting more and I was a bit disappointed. So, I decided to be generous and not to judge because no matter what I say, I hadn’t felt so excited for a while and even though it didn’t last untill the end, the feeling was there.


[Victoria Aveyard]

12 thoughts on “[Review] Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

  1. I’ve just drafted my review of this book (which I finished this morning) and I completely agree with you! I’m so glad to find someone else who isn’t giving it 5 stars – I started to think it was just me 🙂

    • I saw in GR that you were reading this! I am usually very strict with the books I read and sometimes this is annoying because I can’t enjoy the books. I am so glad you agree and I can’t wait to read your review.

    • Really? I didn’t know about that. Well she was the most enjoyable female lead I’ve read the last months. I don’t understand why people didn’t like her. Thank you for reading!

  2. Great review! I also enjoyed Red Queen but was not fully impressed. I was unsure of how to take the strange shaped romance that seems to occur between Mare and the three boys she was fond of.
    I found myself growing really fond of Maven until BAM. Plot twist andmy mouth is left hanging wide open.
    I would have liked to see a bit more world building and development in the overarching plot, but hopefully we get that in the sequel! xoxo

    • I thought that Maven was too good to be true so I didn’t trust him at all. Maybe that was why the plot twist didn’t impress me at all. I’ll be waiting for the sequel and hopefully it will be better. Thanks for reading Josie! ❤

  3. I have been torn into a delema of reading this or the selection. Now, that I have read the selection, I should probably read this one. I hope they aren’t as similas as hell. 🙂 great review. Informative. 🙂

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