Rising to the Top




“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…”

There has only ever been a few books that trump my ability to write a “sane sounding” review. Most of the time my writers block is cured with grievous amounts of coffee and a few hours of staring at a blank screen. The review might come out sounding a little hysterical (or “hyper” as my best-friend likes to say) in the end, but it gets my point across.  (Uncontrollable rambling generally equals awesome book.) But today is not a coffee and vapid stare kind of day. Today is a day where words fail me. If you were standing in front of me right now you would see a gaping mouth. You would see my arms, flailing about my head like some sort of mentally disturbed bat. You’d notice my shortness in breath, my inability to stop moving my feet. You’d FEEL the excitement radiating off of me in waves. But…you are not in front of me. Instead, you are sitting in front of your computer, waiting for me to either sell you on, or slam my latest read.

Regrettably…I have a feeling that TODAY I might not be the best of salesman. But alas…I will do my very best.

The fact that I have been waiting MONTHS for Pierce Brown’s novel “Red Rising” is NOT a secret, and before


I even had the chance to really dig in and read the entire novel I was posting pictures of the very first page on my Facebook page. (This of course started a small riot in which I may or may not have been called Satan.)  Why the first page exactly? Because it is easily the best first page I have ever read. Feel like being hooked on a book after only 28 lines? This is the book for you.

But does the rest of the book stack up to its impressive beginnings? Yes. A thousand times yes. And here’s why.

“Red Rising” is more than just a male dominated “Hunger Games” (if it were hopped up on caffeine pills and body shots.) It is the evolution of a Conqueror. It is the definition of what can happen when a character takes their pain and rage and morphs it into determination and purpose. It is brutal. Unforgiving. It laughs in the face of every angst driven dystopian novel on the market. It introduces you to pure, unmanufactured evil. It makes you question Brown’s perception of humanity.

Every character is immaculately built. There is NO second guessing, the picture is crystal clear. Physicality. Emotionality. Vulnerability. They are all spelled out for you in incredible descriptive passages like this one:

“I wear recoilArmor of gold. It is a second skin. My face alone is exposed. I take ash from one of the Howlers and streak it across my cheeks and mouth. My eyes burn with anger. Blond hair is wild to the shoulders, unbound. I pull my slingBlade and clench the short-wave pulseFist in my left. A razor hangs from my waist; I don’t know how to use it. Dirt under my nails. Frostbite on my pinkie and middle finger of the left hand. I stink. My cloak stinks like the dead thing it is. It hangs limp behind me. White stained with a Proctor’s blood. I pull up the hood. We all do. We look like wolves. And we smell blood.”

The plot flows like water, quick and clear. There is no stone left unturned. No thought unexplored. It is one perfectly penned thought. And before you know it 382 pages have come and gone in a matter of hours.

Though it may appear to you that I’m able to express my thoughts on paper, I assure you I am not. The paragraphs before are just pebbles in a bucket.

THIS is the book I have been waiting for. A book that makes my head feel as if it’s going to explode. A book that makes me gasp and cringe and shake my fist in the air like a mad woman. A book that doesn’t back down. Takes chances. Charges the gates of conformity. If I could grant it more than 5 stars I would.

It is only the first in a series, but it’s a series that is going to make waves. Big, relentless typhoon waves.

Grab a copy, and then come back and chat with me about it.

Happy Reading my fellow Kindle-ites and remember: “Man cannot be freed by the same injustice that enslaved it.” – Red Rising

Add it to your Goodreads shelf / Amazon wishlist

Release date 1/28/14

Rating Report
Overall: 5




About Misty

Your friendly neighborhood narcissist. I'm sarcastic, cynical and a bit cranky. I own a soap box so big that sometimes I have difficulty stepping down off of it, and I'm about 94% certain I have multiple personalities. I don't sleep enough, and I read more than any person should ever consider normal. I have anger management issues, especially when I'm stuck in traffic and I have an unhealthy obsession with my Kindle. I am a vampire lovin', zombie obsessed, book-in-hand, iPod freak. You either love me or hate me. You be the judge.

4 thoughts on “Rising to the Top

  1. THIS is why I come here when I am in a rut and can’t figure out what I want to read next. Off to grab it so I can start it at lunch. Of course, I have already read what is available in the preview 🙂

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