With shades of The Hunger Games, Ender’s Game, and Game of Thrones, debut author Pierce Brown’s genre-defying epic Red Rising hit the ground running and wasted no time becoming a sensation. Golden Son continues the stunning saga of Darrow, a rebel forged by tragedy, battling to lead his oppressed people to freedom from the overlords of a brutal elitist future built on lies. Now fully embedded among the Gold ruling class, Darrow continues his work to bring down Society from within. A life-or-death tale of vengeance with an unforgettable hero at its heart, Golden Son guarantees Pierce Brown’s continuing status as one of fiction’s most exciting new voices.
This review could also be titled: "Three Reasons Why I Didn't Like 'Golden Son' by Pierce Brown". My heart is broken by this book, it really is, to the point where I think maybe I was delusional when I gave "Red Rising" three and a half stars. Was RR really that much better than GS? Or was my judgment clouded by all the hype and five star ratings surrounding RR? Whatever, it doesn't even matter, because my love affair with this series and this author is now over.
So let's keep it short and sweet, three reasons, aaaaand go:
1. Little to no character development.
Yeah, I said it. Darrow was flat as a pancake here. I felt like I got to know him in RR, and I liked him and wanted him to succeed, but in GS, I just didn't care about him like I should have. Likewise the secondary characters. I was pretty excited when Sevro showed up, but I wasn't given enough of him for me to be pulled further into the story. Mustang was given a couple of good moments, but other than that, snore! And anytime someone died, which was fairly often, I hardly felt any regret because I wasn't made to especially care about any of them. I was actually bored by almost everyone in this book!
2. Nonstop action that lost me and made no sense.
I wanted to skim the action scenes or read the Cliff's Notes version, because they were very difficult to follow. I definitely was not pulled into the action, and in fact felt like a very distant observer. So many words, and so little...anything! Just tell me who dies and who betrays whom, and skip all the rest of the filler, because that's all it is - filler!
3. Cheap tricks by the author.
This happened a few times and totally pissed me off! The author would lead me to believe that Darrow was in peril, and then it was like, "Psych! Just kidding, Roxy! I already planned ahead for that exact eventuality, so what would normally happen in this situation is not really going to happen because I'm such a genius. Doesn't that make you love me even more?" Guess what, Darrow? No, no it doesn't. It makes me mad at your creator for not developing you enough for me to believe that any of that could actually happen.
I could go on, there are so many more reasons why I didn't like this book, but suffice it to say that I won't be recommending this one to anybody and I won't be continuing the series.