If it were acceptable book review practice to simply post paragraphs of “!!!!!” over and over again, I would. Pierce Brown seems to delight in leading his readers to believe that one thing will happen…and then making everything fall apart so that you’re left staring at the page, wondering how in the world Darrow will escape this time. And by “this time” I mean every fifty pages or so. The big moments come hard and fast, and nothing ever goes as I expect it. I LOVE IT.
While Rising Red was a small(er) stakes revenge story, Golden Son widens its scope to the whole solar system, and this time Darrow has matured into a desire, not for revenge, but for transformation. He doesn’t shy away from the battles he needs to fight (and agh! the battles! the enormous death counts of actual main characters!), but his overarching goal is to redesign the Society into a place where every color can be and do what they will. It’s a more complex goal, but nobler as well.
The side characters are also amazing. Mustang is awesome, and I really loved Brown’s consistency in allowing Darrow a lot of time to deal with his first wife’s death and the repercussions of loving someone else. Sevro is the best creepy friend you’d ever want, and then there’s Rangar, Victra, Roque, and Daxo! Each character has a unique voice, sense of humor, and battle strategy. They were fully formed humans, which is why it was gut-wrenching when some of them died.
The only thing I have against Golden Son is that I have to wait for forever before I can read the third book in the trilogy! UGH. How dare the publishing industry make me wait.
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 peaceful 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.
Release Date: January 2015