The Golden Son is the second book of The Red Rising trilogy by Pierce Brown. This book takes off two years after the end of events in Red Rising. I read this book immediately after finishing Red Rising. The Golden Son is a good sequel to Red Rising. Unlike the Hunger Games trilogy where each book got worse as the series progressed, this sequel is much better. The story is a as interesting as the first one. The writing exceptional.
We start the book with our hero defeated in his first battle at the institute. The grooming ground for the Golds after the institute. We learn now that Darrow is being forsaken by his master and left out to dry. This virtually means a death sentence, with the Bellona clan yearning for Darrow’s head.
Jackal is reintroduced, now even more smarter and cunning than before. Darrow forms an alliance with him although what follows after meeting Jackal, the entire Sons of Ares episode and Darrow’s conflict whether or not to blow himself up could have been handled much better. But from then on till almost the end of the book is absolute genius. Exceptionally well written, the plot never meanders and the intensity never falters.
I enjoyed the tension between Mustang and Darrow, should he or not trust her? All through this series it is played so well, the ending of the first book quells those doubts but the second book shows brings those doubts to another level. The beginning of the first book should put to rest these nagging doubts. The way I see it, if Darrow doesn’t get help from Mustang, he’s as good as dead. Ohh, when it comes to trust Mustang is just one character. The trust dynamic with other characters is even more important. Now that I think about it, the whole theme of this book is about trust and friendships.
The ending though, seems rushed and left a lot of open questions but I guess that is part of the plan, leaving it as a lead up to the next book. On the whole, this is a sequel that is equally or maybe a little better than the first book. Do give it a read. Here’s a quote from the book,
It’s not victory that makes a man. It’s his defeats.
P.S: I’m writing this review almost two weeks after I finished the book.