Golden Son

Golden Son Book Cover Golden Son
Red Rising, Book 2
Pierce Brown
Fiction
Del Rey
2015-01-06
464

With shades of The Hunger Games, Ender’s Game, and Game of Thrones, debut author Pierce Brown’s genre-defying epic Red Rising hit the ground running and wasted no time becoming a sensation. Golden Son continues the stunning saga of Darrow, a rebel forged by tragedy, battling to lead his oppressed people to freedom. As a Red, Darrow grew up working the mines deep beneath the surface of Mars, enduring backbreaking labor while dreaming of the better future he was building for his descendants. But the Society he faithfully served was built on lies. Darrow’s kind have been betrayed and denied by their elitist masters, the Golds—and their only path to liberation is revolution. And so Darrow sacrifices himself in the name of the greater good for which Eo, his true love and inspiration, laid down her own life. He becomes a Gold, infiltrating their privileged realm so that he can destroy it from within. A lamb among wolves in a cruel world, Darrow finds friendship, respect, and even love—but also the wrath of powerful rivals. To wage and win the war that will change humankind’s destiny, Darrow must confront the treachery arrayed against him, overcome his all-too-human desire for retribution—and strive not for violent revolt but a hopeful rebirth. Though the road ahead is fraught with danger and deceit, Darrow must choose to follow Eo’s principles of love and justice to free his people. He must live for more. Advance praise for Golden Son “Pierce Brown is a prodigy. As great as the first book of the Red Rising Trilogy is, Golden Son is even better. A wild ride full of suspense, intrigue, and serious ass-kicking bravado, it’s expertly written and emotionally engaging, with top-notch universe-building that begs for further exploration. I want more!”—Christopher Golden, New York Times bestselling author of Snowblind “The stakes are even higher than they were in Red Rising, and the twists and turns of the story are every bit as exciting. The jaw-dropper of an ending will leave readers hungry for the conclusion to Brown’s wholly original, completely thrilling saga.”—Booklist (starred review) “Dramatic . . . the rare middle book that loses almost no momentum as it sets up the final installment.”—Publishers Weekly “Darrow is an assertive hero. . . . Comparisons to The Hunger Games and Game of Thrones series are inevitable, for this tale has elements of both.”—Kirkus Reviews Praise for Pierce Brown’s Red Rising “[A] spectacular adventure . . . one heart-pounding ride . . . Pierce Brown’s dizzyingly good debut novel evokes The Hunger Games, Lord of the Flies, and Ender’s Game. . . . [Red Rising] has everything it needs to become meteoric.”—Entertainment Weekly “[A] top-notch debut novel . . . Red Rising ascends above a crowded dystopian field.”—USA Today “Compulsively readable and exceedingly entertaining . . . [a] must for both fans of classic sci-fi and fervent followers of new school dystopian epics.”—Examiner.com “A story of vengeance, warfare and the quest for power . . . reminiscent of The Hunger Games and Game of Thrones.”—Kirkus Reviews “Fast-paced, gripping, well-written—the sort of book you cannot put down.”—Terry Brooks From the Hardcover edition.

 

Review:

The first thought I had when I finished reading “Golden Son” is that there is no way I can wait an entire year to find out what happens next.  My second thought was a mass of self-pity that I have no choice but to wait.  Finally, my third thought was that it was an amazing follow-up to “Red Rising” and was actually even better than the first in the series.

Pierce Brown has built an amazing world and mythology for the Red Rising series.  Everything is fully fleshed out and even when not explicitly written, you can tell he has a backstory in mind for all of the races.  It’s a pleasure whenever you find out more, and at no point does it contradict anything that was previously written.

One of my favorite aspects of the characters in “Golden Son” is that none of them are perfect.  Darrow, the protagonist, is extremely flawed.  No character is good or bad, even those who are the clear villains of the story.  All of the characters from “Red Rising” experienced a great deal of growth in “Golden Son”, with many not taking a route you would expect.  There were some particularly bold moves by the author when it comes to Eo, but I will leave those for the reader to discover on their own.

At no point does the plot lag, and that is saying quite a bit for a novel the length of “Golden Son”.  It is filled with war, adventure, gore, fantasy, science-fiction, romance, and anything else you can fit into a book.  If you are a fan of “Red Rising”, make sure you clear a couple of days on your calendar, because you will not want to put this one down.  If you have never read the first in the series, I highly encourage you to do so and to be certain you have “Golden Son” ready to begin as soon as you finish the last page of “Red Rising”.

In short, I highly recommend “Golden Son”, but do need to caution that it is not for the squeamish.  It is also not a young adult novel, though I saw “Red Rising” categorized in many places as such, so that is something for parents of middle readers to keep in mind.

5 stars all the way.

This review is based upon a complimentary copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

 
Content Warning:

I generally only do these for young adult books.  However, this book is extremely violent and gory, and it does have just about every adult theme imaginable.  You have been warned.

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