Fantasy Friday – The Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard


***May contain spoilers***

Mare is a Red. And in the world she lives in the Reds serve the Silvers. Silvers are humans with super abilities like being able to control fire or having super strength. A chance encounter with the Prince gets Mare a job as a servant at the Palace. It isn’t long before it’s revealed that Mare has an ability of her own – she can control electricity. The King and Queen decide to disguise Mare as a Silver, and force her to become engaged to their son Maven. They hope to use Mare as a pawn to control the Reds, but Mare has some plans of her own.

I’m still trying to decide how I feel about this book. The Red Queen was a decent read, but I had a couple issues with it.

First, the writing isn’t great, and it took several chapters for the book to engage me. Once Mare reached the Palace and was discovered, the story picked up and was more entertaining. And I felt like the writing improved as the story went along, either that or my enjoyment clouded my judgment.

Second, three boys were in love with Mare. I just didn’t buy it. I could buy Maven being in love with her, because we were shown how their relationship progressed. And I could buy Kilorn, because he was a childhood friend. But Cal? Nope. We weren’t shown enough of their relationship to understand why he would fall for Mare. I’m not opposed to the relationship, but I wish it had been fleshed out more.

I do like Mare as a character though. There were several things that happened to Mare that she had no choice over, but for the most part her choices help drive the story. Which was wonderful! I was worried that she would turn into a passive damsel in distress. Being a thief, Mare is good at running, but she grows and learns to stand and fight. She also cares so much about her family and Kilorn that she is willing to do anything to protect them. All are things that I admire about her character.

I think some of my disappointment with The Red Queen was that I just finished three books of The Lunar Chronicles, and they were all so good! And I couldn’t help but compare the books. The Red Queen was worth reading, but I’m just not as excited about this series as I am the Lunar Chronicles.

Have you read The Red Queen? What are your thoughts?

Top Ten Books I’m Thankful For


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly link-up from The Broke and the Bookish. This week the theme is books that I’m most thankful for. Be sure to check out all the other blogs in the link up! :)

The Little House Books by Laura Ingalls

It was the first series I remember reading as a kid. It made me want to live on the prairie, wear long dresses, and ride in a wagon.

Nancy Drew Mysteries

I will always have fond memories of those old yellow-backed books. Nancy was my hero, and she taught me that girls could be smart, brave, and adventurous.

Anne of Green Gables by LM Montgomery

Anne was a dreamer just like me. We both lived in our heads, and sometimes that got us in a lot of trouble. :)

Emily of New Moon by LM Montgomery

These books made me believe that I could be a writer someday. I believe that they are also the reason I’m so fond of dark stories.

By the Light of the Moon by Dean Koontz

This book was my introduction to Dean Koontz, and I’ve been hooked ever since.

The Gunslinger by Stephen King

I had always been too afraid to read Stephen King’s books. The movie It had scared the crap out of me as a kid. But then a friend lent me a copy of The Gunslinger and I’ve been a fan ever since. Yes, his books do scare me, but they also make me laugh, cry, and care about his characters.

The Lord of the Rings by JRR Tolkien

The reason that I love Epic Fantasy.

The Harry Potter Series by JK Rowling

Harry Potter isn’t just a books series, it’s a way of life! I had never wanted to be part of a world, more than I wanted to be a part of Harry’s. Still do.

The Amber Chronicles by Roger Zelazny

The second reason I love Epic Fantasy. And I’m still in love with Corwin.

Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell

This is my favorite book. Ever!

What books are you most thankful for? Let me know in the comments!

Katniss Everdeen. My New Hero.


There is just so much to love about Katniss Everdeen as a hero. I love that she is smart, resourceful and willing to do whatever it takes to survive, and protect her family. I love that in spite of the circumstances she finds herself in she never loses her humanity. I love that she allied with Rue in The Hunger Games. I love that she wanted misfits like Mags, Nuts and Volts on her team in Catching Fire. But most of all I love that in the end she chooses hope.

I couldn’t help but compare Katniss to another popular YA heroine, Bella Swan. I enjoyed the Twilight books, I truly did, but there were so many things about Bella that just made me want to strangle her! I mean she was willing to give up everything for a boy! Katniss would never have left her family behind, by choice, for some guy. Katniss may be seriously flawed, but for the most part her priorities are right.

Yes, there is a love triangle in The Hunger Games, but romance isn’t the most important part of these books. These books are about war, and what people are willing to sacrifice for freedom. And it’s told from the viewpoint of a 17 year old girl, who has to face hardships and make decisions that no kid should ever have to make.

I’m not a parent, but I always thought that if I ever have children, that there are certain books that I want to share with them, especially if I have a daughter. I want her to read Nancy Drew, Anne of Green Gables, Emily of New Moon, Harry Potter, and now The Hunger Games.

I want my daughter to read about characters that are strong, that stand up for what they believe in, that are fiercely loyal to their family and friends, and that have confidence in themselves. These are the things I love best about the characters I mentioned above, and I want my children, if I ever have any, to know and love these characters as well.

And if my future kid is anything like me, Katniss Everdeen will definitely be a favorite.

So, have you read The Hunger Games Trilogy? What did you think? Any favorite characters? If you are a parent, do you have any books that you want to share with your kids?

This post originally ran in 2012, and has been updated.