Publisher: Del Rey (Random House)
Genre: Science Fiction, Dystopian
Darrow is a Red, a member of the lowest caste in the color-coded society of the future. Like his fellow Reds, he works all day, believing that he and his people are making the surface of Mars livable for future generations.
Yet he spends his life willingly, knowing that his blood and sweat will one day result in a better world for his children.
But Darrow and his kind have been betrayed. Soon he discovers that humanity already reached the surface generations ago. Vast cities and sprawling parks spread across the planet. Darrow—and Reds like him—are nothing more than slaves to a decadent ruling class.
Inspired by a longing for justice, and driven by the memory of lost love, Darrow sacrifices everything to infiltrate the legendary Institute, a proving ground for the dominant Gold caste, where the next generation of humanity’s overlords struggle for power. He will be forced to compete for his life and the very future of civilization against the best and most brutal of Society’s ruling class. There, he will stop at nothing to bring down his enemies… even if it means he has to become one of them to do so.
The Red Rising trilogy should be an epic story chockfull of crazy space battles, war, and downright monumental scenes, especially in Morning Star; however, I felt disconnected from the story and the characters.
Morning Star is the highest rated book out of the trilogy, which is unusual for a final novel in a trilogy/series, so I went into it with expectations. I expected this book to rekindle whatever love I had for the series when I first started it as well as pull of the rare feat of being the best book in the series. Morning Star does fulfill these very daunting shoes, however, as mentioned previously, I still felt disconnected from the story and the characters. The issues I had in Golden Son didn’t disappear, but they also didn’t enhance.
The biggest issue I had with the previous novel that carried over to Morning Star was the writing. The writing of the space battles scenes still felt long and dragged out. They also didn’t feel like a true science fiction space battle. This is due largely because the Red Rising trilogy doesn’t feel like Science Fiction despite the setting. Alternatively, I would classify the novel as Dystopian with hints of Science Fiction. Unfortunately, this is a weakness because the writing tries so hard to make it clear to the reader that this world is very much futuristic.
On the contrary, almost every scene is epic. And I don’t use the word epic lightly. Every scene, speech, and character are badass and epic. It’s a pure pleasure to read for the most part. I could highlight 10 amazing scenes in this novel, but I still found it bland. So, my issues with this trilogy are very much my personal distaste for the writing style. I’m not saying Pierce Brown is an awful writer; all I’m saying is that his writing style didn’t jive with me. I couldn’t appreciate all the intricate aspects of the novel and its blending of genres.
Overall, Morning Star does deserve its star rating on Goodreads despite my particularly negative review. This is definitely a trilogy I will be revisiting in a few years because I think it’s a story that needs to be read back to back.