I have very conflicting feelings about Red Queen, I enjoyed it enough to read it until the end but I’m unsure how much I actually absorbed. It was very, very, very like The Hunger Games for me.
Mare is a Red who lives in a small town with her poor family and particularly a girly younger sister who is her complete opposite yet she wants to protect (parallels with Katniss and Prim). She has a male friend Kilorn who she’s hiding feelings for and desperately wants to protect (like Katniss and Gale). The reds are ruled by an elite class called the Silvers and somehow Mare infilifrates them due to having unexpected powers of her own. So you get it, it’s very similar and that’s kind of what puts me off. Not to mention that Mare’s relationship with Cal distinctly reminds me of Katniss and Peeta like she cares for him but not as much as she does Kilorn. That may be a very slight spoiler there…
The rest is spoiler free I promise! So I think that’s basically why I struggled to get on with it because it just felt a bit like I was re-reading The Hunger Games but at the same time it also felt very slow. Though the premise screamed out at me that I should enjoy it, something wasn’t letting me get into this book, I couldn’t engage with the characters, there was nobody I really liked or disliked. This is going to sound insane but I hope fellow readers understand when I say that the whole experience felt like I was reading a book. I.e I wasn’t immersed in the story so deeply that it felt like I was a part of it.
That being said… it’s not all bad. The premise is really promising. I can’t say that it was so bad that I didn’t finish it and there’s two more books to go, which means that it could improve. It wouldn’t be the first time that the first book by an author writing fantasy was weak and then improved so we’ll see how I get on with Glass Sword.