[Book review] Golden Son – Pierce Brown

Well Mr. Brown, it seems you’ve done it again. Golden Son was amazing. I mean I liked Red Rising but the second part to the trilogy was just mind blowing.

The book doesn’t come out until January 6 but I received an ARC copy from my friend who said that this is his favourite book ever.


If you haven’t already read Red Rising, go! Read it now. I’ll wait. Come back when you’re done.

Here’s a quick recap. It’s a hundred years into the future. Society’s ranks and roles are divided by colour. We have a boy named Darrow who lives as a lowRed on Mars, working in the mines to mine gasses in order to terraform Mars. They are led to believe they’re doing this so people on Earth can live on Mars. Long story short, the ArchGovenor kills his wife. He tries to commit suicide but is saved by a rebel group called the Sons of Ares who want to reform the Society. It turns out that Mars has been terraformed hundreds of years ago yet these lowReds are kept underground. The rebel group hope to reform society by having him pose as a Gold and to infiltrate within.

Potential spoilers ahead but I’m being very vague about everything….

Golden Son (book II of the trilogy) continues as Darrow, once a lowly Gold from a distant mining colony- at least that was his cover story – rose through the ranks and became someone invaluable to the ArchGovernor of Mars, Augustus. Unfortunately, in a society where power is held at such a high regard, mistakes can cost you. In this case, Darrow lost the ArchGovernor’s favor and has to regain his status as the Reaper or be auctioned to another family, which would be a detriment to the plan.

There is dissent among the rebels themselves and Darrow decided against their plan and went with his own. Don’t worry, he doesn’t do it in an obnoxious way like Harry Potter or Tom Raines. UGH. They’re both such petulant little dipshits. (Disclosure: Fan of the HP & Insignia series but not a fan of Harry nor Tom) That’s one thing I really like about this series is that the main character is prideful but humble at the same time. He accepts his weakness. He knows he needs help whereas Harry and Tom feel that they’re the only ones who can fix everything. But I digress…

Because of the new direction Darrow went with the plan, it threw a kink in the Sovereign’s plan to wipe out the ArchGovernor’s family. As mentioned before, power is everything to these people. Darrow’s actions begin a war between the ArchGovernor’s family and allies vs. the Sovereign and allied families.

While Golden Son (and even Red Rising) read like an action movie, there are a lot of layers to it. Yes, it’s a story about a boy being used as a weapon to restructure society from within but that’s a very simplistic description of what you take away from it. It’s not a simple matter of killing or destroying those who created this society but ushering a change in everyone. lowColors and highColors alike.

You’re at the edge of your seat during battles, anticipating betrayal … but sometimes the knife in the back comes from an unexpected hand. It’s filled with unlikely friendships and allies, trump cards, and mind blowing revelations. Could you be rooting for a friend or a foe? Allegiances come and go like the tide. Unpredictable and never boring.

I highly recommend this book to those who are fans of science fiction, high fantasy, mythology, action, adventure, Hunger Games, Star Wars, Insignia…

5/5 // Cross-posted on my new book review blog: She Reads (anndreachan.com)

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