Review: Iron Gold ( Red Rising #4) by Pierce Brown

Title: Iron Gold
Author: Pierce Brown
Publisher/Year:  Random House Publishing 1/16/18
Length:   617 Pages
Series:  Red Rising #4

Overview

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • In the epic next chapter of the Red Rising Saga, the #1 bestselling author of Morning Star pushes the boundaries of one of the boldest series in fiction.

They call him father, liberator, warlord, Slave King, Reaper. But he feels a boy as he falls toward the war-torn planet, his armor red, his army vast, his heart heavy. It is the tenth year of war and the thirty-third of his life.

A decade ago Darrow was the hero of the revolution he believed would break the chains of the Society. But the Rising has shattered everything: Instead of peace and freedom, it has brought endless war. Now he must risk all he has fought for on one last desperate mission. Darrow still believes he can save everyone, but can he save himself?

And throughout the worlds, other destinies entwine with Darrow’s to change his fate forever:

A young Red girl flees tragedy in her refugee camp, and achieves for herself a new life she could never have imagined.

An ex-soldier broken by grief is forced to steal the most valuable thing in the galaxy—or pay with his life.

And Lysander au Lune, the heir in exile to the Sovereign, wanders the stars with his mentor, Cassius, haunted by the loss of the world that Darrow transformed, and dreaming of what will rise from its ashes.

Red Rising was the story of the end of one universe. Iron Gold is the story of the creation of a new one. Witness the beginning of a stunning new saga of tragedy and triumph from masterly New York Times bestselling author Pierce Brown.

My Thoughts 

I was the biggest fan of the original Trilogy – i couldn’t get enough of the tales of Darrow and the Howlers, the twist with Virginia and the life that they all lived once being selected for training and then trying to save civilization from  a war that no one really knew who was behind it nor the breadth or depth of it.

So when we learned that Mr Brown, our author wrote a 4th book for the story – 10+ years in the future, i was beyond excited.  I couldnt wait to see what the story would be now that we would get to see who’s still alive, what alliances are in place, and who would be fighting for which side.  What we get is that, but we also get a really weird story with so many new characters that i’m not sure that we ever learn how they are intertwined.  I”m confused.  that’s about all i can say.

We all know that it never takes me this long to read a book, even one that’s 600+ pages, so that should give you a sense of what i think.  i’m on the fence.  We come back into a world where Darrow is the still the Reaper, respected  by some, hated by many.  We see that his wife  Virginia has assumed the position of Sovereign which should be a good thing since we saw a lot of maturation from her in the original series.  But being married to Darrow puts her in a rough position where she’s either destined to be doomed, or destined to  be revered or a bit of both. then there’s Sevro and Victra in the mix as well as many others, so we are grounded in the familiar and introduced to the new.

we are given a series of alternating chapters here, many new characters that are of an age where they were too young to truly know what was going on during the other war, but have strong opinions now that they have grown up in what the world has become.

We have Ephraim and Volga who are mains in a sense, they drive the progress of one of the story lines – Ephraim being an art broker by trade, but a thief for all intents and purposes.  and where his story takes us is on a path first to earn a lot of money, and then being recruited  by the Syndicate to steal back something very  valuable, which turns out to be someone(s).  Volga is his ‘friend’ – a term i use looslely since Ephraim is a tough friend to have, yet as an Obsidian, she ties herself tight to those that she’s close to, and it proves to be a good and bad thing for him.

The other story line that we focus a lot on is that of Lysander, the grandson of Aja, the prior Sovereign who was murdered and Cassius – one of the most important mains of the first 3 books.  They are comarades of sorts but not quite friends.  They have a bond that we can only hope ultimately takes them to fight for the proper side, but in this series it’s impossible to know what’s good or not .

So you can see, there’s a bit of historical and heritage in the series that keeps us familiar with what we read all those years ago, but there’s so much new, so much that’s not truly grounded to give us a sound foundation that takes the story on a new and confusing path.

I’m still scratching my head here, but i’m glad that i read it and we all know that i’m going to read the next installment whenever it comes out because i don’t let books beat me, and i have faith that we’ll get closure to this series that’s deserved.  so enjoy – and let me know what you all think.  i wonder if you guys think differently than i do.

Review: Need You Now (Man of the Month #3) by J Kenner

Title: Need You Now
Author: J Kenner
Publisher/Year:  Martini & Olive 2/13/18
Length:   189 Pages
Series:  Man of the Month #3

Overview

Charming smile. Wicked skills. Meet Mr. March. 
With his tousled hair, cocky grin, and surprising abs hidden under a conservative button-down, bartender Cameron Reed is no stranger to the attention of women.
He dates, but never gets serious, claiming that he’s too focused on his studies. But it’s not really school that preoccupies him; it’s sensual fantasies of his best friend’s sister.
Mina Silver might be absolutely off-limits because of her overprotective brother and father, but that doesn’t stop Cam from imagining the feel of her in his arms, the brush of his lips over her soft skin, or the sparks that would fly between them if he ever got her into bed.
But for Cam, the bonds of family and friendship are sacrosanct, and there is no way that he’d ever violate his friend’s trust. Or would he?
Because with love on the line, maybe it’s time for Cam to break a few rules.
Taking a risk never felt so right.

My Thoughts

I do love this series by J Kenner, especially since it’s really snackable in length, and the characters all intertwine with one another.  We knew that we were going to get the story behind Cam and Mina, and of course it’s on track with what we’ve seen from the entire series so far.

Cam and Mina go way back, they’ve known each other since at least high school if not earlier and while there’s always been a family vibe between them, they both actually have a bit of a spark that they feel for one another but of course are afraid to act on it since there’s the little issue of Mina’s twin brother Darryl who’s Cam’s best friend.  we saw that issue come into play with the Brent/Reece friendship so it’s not surprising that we kind of go that angle here too.

Anyway, what we have is a sweet story of two people who finally give into what they feel for each other, trying to do it in secret so the world doesnt know, while also trying to live their lives since they’re both trying to progress their careers outside of the Fix.

Mina has this goal of being in film in LA and she’s got connections and friends out there and is hoping to land the perfect job.  Helping out on the remodel reality show for now is perfect for her, and when she lands a local gig that sounds ideal, we think that life is going to fall in step for everyone – until Hollywood calls and mucks it up.

Then there’s Cam who’s going for his doctorate and has finally started to get his legs beneath him.  He’s been promoted at the bar and he’s starting to make a name for himself in what he does.

So when hollywood comes into play and this duo is torn apart, the question becomes what does that mean for everyone?  add to that the fact that their friends and family will eventually find out that they are ‘dating’ – well you know that there’s anxiety in and out.

In true J Kenner fashion, we have some steamy scenes, you can see that there’s such sensitivity and tenderness though between these two which isn’t always the case in her couples.  Also as promised we have a Cameo from MR Stark himself – so that’s a nice treat, although i can’t say that it really added any value to the story.  Oh well.  In any event, we have book 4 coming i’m sure in another 2 weeks and i think that it’s Nolan and Shelby based on the epilogue of this book.  I wonder what mischief they’ll get into to bring them together.  Enjoy! (Happy Valentines!)