Red Rising

Pierce Brown. Del Rey, $28 (382p) ISBN 978-0-345-53978-6
Debut author Pierce shoots for the next Hunger Games with mixed results in this melodramatic SF series opener. Sixteen-year-old Darrow is a Red miner, the lowest worker caste on Mars. Darrow’s people live in hellish conditions underground and mine the precious silvery helium-3 needed to terraform the planet. Darrow’s father was hanged for performing a traditional dance, and when Darrow’s wife, Eo, discovers that Mars’s surface has been livable for centuries and then sings a forbidden dirge in public, she too is executed. Awash with grief, Darrow is recruited by the rebel Sons of Ares to infiltrate high-caste Gold society and help overthrow the government. After weeks of surgery and training, Darrow enters Mars’s most selective school, but being accepted at the Institute is one thing; surviving a murderous hazing, ruthless power struggles, and a brutal war game won’t be so easy. Determined to lead his people to a better future, Darrow will do anything to win. Pierce offers a Hollywood-ready story with plenty of action and thrills but painfully little originality or plausibility. Agent: Hannah Bowman, Liza Dawson Associates. (Feb. 2014)
Reviewed on: 05/20/2013
Paperback - 400 pages - 978-0-345-53980-9
Paperback - 978-1-59413-774-7
Ebook - 261 pages - 978-0-345-53979-3
Hardcover - 639 pages - 978-1-4104-6964-9
Compact Disc - 978-1-4640-4215-7
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