Mare Barrow lives in a world divided by blood, where Reds are commoners and Silvers are the elite. The Silvers possess superpowers and use these gifts to rule society. As a Red, Mare spends her day stealing and pickpocketing in order to get by. But when she is hired to work at the Palace, she discovers she has powers of her own. The Silvers are forced to fabricate a story to explain Mare’s power, declaring Mare to be a long-lost Silver princess. Mare soon finds herself navigating Silver politics while working with a covert Red militant group to overthrow the Silver government.
I didn’t love this book but I didn’t hate it. I thought there was so much potential here. I was intrigued by this world of two castes and hints of a revolution and rebellion, however it did have a lot of similarities with Hunger Games and other dystopian books.
I found the characters didn’t have any real development. No one really learns or changes and some of the storylines were a bit predictable. Plus, for someone whose goal is to overthrow the Silvers, I thought Mare was a little too trusting of everyone she came across at the Palace.
My main criticism is that I still have a lot of questions about what a Silver exactly is and how they came about. I was interested in the fact that all of them had some sort of “gift” but then, after reading more, I realized that their superpower gift could be anything and it kind of lessened the appeal for me. It was as if the author couldn’t decide on two or three superpowers to make the Silvers extraordinary so she just threw them all in. There are Silvers who can read minds, who can control fire, who can control metal, who are really strong, who are really fast, who can control the wind, who can control water, who are basically everything.
Plus, what is a Silver? Are they Gods? Are they genetically mutated? Have they always been around? In the book, they have been fighting wars for hundreds of years and yet their armies consist of Red soldiers. If the Silvers have all these superpowers, why are they sending lowly Reds who have no powers to fight in their army? Won’t they have a better chance of winning if they fight themselves? I have too many questions about this world that were not answered.
This is the first book in a series and I’m not sure if I’m interested enough to continue. I’m worried that a love triangle (or love quadruple) is developing and I’m not sure the world and characters were fleshed out enough for me to care to read the next one.