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The #1 New York Times bestselling author of Morning Star returns to the Red Rising universe with the thrilling sequel to Iron Gold. For a decade Darrow led a revolution against the corrupt color-coded Society. Now, outlawed by the very Republic he founded, he wages a rogue war on Mercury in hopes that he can still salvage the dream of Eo. But as he leaves death The #1 New York Times bestselling author of Morning Star returns to the Red Rising universe with the thrilling sequel to Iron Gold. For a decade Darrow led a revolution against the corrupt color-coded Society. Now, outlawed by the very Republic he founded, he wages a rogue war on Mercury in hopes that he can still salvage the dream of Eo. But as he leaves death and destruction in his wake, is he still the hero who broke the chains? Or will another legend rise to take his place? Lysander au Lune, the heir in exile, has returned to the Core. Determined to bring peace back to mankind at the edge of his sword, he must overcome or unite the treacherous Gold families of the Core and face down Darrow over the skies of war-torn Mercury. But theirs are not the only fates hanging in the balance. On Luna, Mustang, Sovereign of the Republic, campaigns to unite the Republic behind her husband. Beset by political and criminal enemies, can she outwit her opponents in time to save him? Once a Red refugee, young Lyria now stands accused of treason, and her only hope is a desperate escape with unlikely new allies. Abducted by a new threat to the Republic, Pax and Electra, the children of Darrow and Sevro, must trust in Ephraim, a thief, for their salvation—and Ephraim must look to them for his chance at redemption. As alliances shift, break, and re-form—and power is seized, lost, and reclaimed—every player is at risk in a game of conquest that could turn the Rising into a new Dark Age.


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The #1 New York Times bestselling author of Morning Star returns to the Red Rising universe with the thrilling sequel to Iron Gold. For a decade Darrow led a revolution against the corrupt color-coded Society. Now, outlawed by the very Republic he founded, he wages a rogue war on Mercury in hopes that he can still salvage the dream of Eo. But as he leaves death The #1 New York Times bestselling author of Morning Star returns to the Red Rising universe with the thrilling sequel to Iron Gold. For a decade Darrow led a revolution against the corrupt color-coded Society. Now, outlawed by the very Republic he founded, he wages a rogue war on Mercury in hopes that he can still salvage the dream of Eo. But as he leaves death and destruction in his wake, is he still the hero who broke the chains? Or will another legend rise to take his place? Lysander au Lune, the heir in exile, has returned to the Core. Determined to bring peace back to mankind at the edge of his sword, he must overcome or unite the treacherous Gold families of the Core and face down Darrow over the skies of war-torn Mercury. But theirs are not the only fates hanging in the balance. On Luna, Mustang, Sovereign of the Republic, campaigns to unite the Republic behind her husband. Beset by political and criminal enemies, can she outwit her opponents in time to save him? Once a Red refugee, young Lyria now stands accused of treason, and her only hope is a desperate escape with unlikely new allies. Abducted by a new threat to the Republic, Pax and Electra, the children of Darrow and Sevro, must trust in Ephraim, a thief, for their salvation—and Ephraim must look to them for his chance at redemption. As alliances shift, break, and re-form—and power is seized, lost, and reclaimed—every player is at risk in a game of conquest that could turn the Rising into a new Dark Age.

30 review for Dark Age

  1. 4 out of 5

    Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin

    OMG! OMG! OMG! THE DARK AGE HANGOVER KIT CAME! CLICK ON GOODIES LINK UNDER THE PICTURE TO SEE THE FREAKING GOODIES! OMG! ALTHOUGH, MY SEVRO PLUSHIE IS THE BEST! THE FREAKING GOODIES LINK Another special and numbered edition came today! Supposedly tomorrow, my Dark Age Box with Sevro plushie should be here! Fingers Crossed! If I live to read the next book, I’m afraid!! 😳 Well, one of my special editions came today 😉 OMG! OMG! OMG! THE DARK AGE HANGOVER KIT CAME! CLICK ON GOODIES LINK UNDER THE PICTURE TO SEE THE FREAKING GOODIES! OMG! ALTHOUGH, MY SEVRO PLUSHIE IS THE BEST! THE FREAKING GOODIES LINK Another special and numbered edition came today! Supposedly tomorrow, my Dark Age Box with Sevro plushie should be here! Fingers Crossed! If I live to read the next book, I’m afraid!! 😳 Well, one of my special editions came today 😉 Happy Reading! Mel 🖤🐶🐺🐾

  2. 5 out of 5

    jessica

    ‘the man is broken, but he is not allowed to break.’ but gorydamn, my goodman, this book broke me and then drowned me in my own tears. i took the day off from work yesterday just so i could stay home and dedicate my full attention to reading this entire beast of brutality, with full focus and no distractions or interruptions. after meeting pierce brown last week and listening to him talk so passionately about this, i knew that was the only way i could show the complete respect this book deserves. and ‘the man is broken, but he is not allowed to break.’ but gorydamn, my goodman, this book broke me and then drowned me in my own tears. i took the day off from work yesterday just so i could stay home and dedicate my full attention to reading this entire beast of brutality, with full focus and no distractions or interruptions. after meeting pierce brown last week and listening to him talk so passionately about this, i knew that was the only way i could show the complete respect this book deserves. and boy, what a day yesterday was. a reviewer for NPR wrote, “browns plots are like a depth charge of nitromethane dropped in a bucket of gasoline. his pacing is 100% him standing over it all with a lit match and a smile, waiting for us to dare him to drop it.” no truer words have been written. in fact, pierce went and dropped the match in the prologue, because this crudely self-photoshopped meme is pretty much live footage of my reading experience. you would think that, by now, i would know what im getting myself into every time i open a red rising novel. on the same level as ‘golden son,’ this new installment (in what is the most epic sci-fantasy series i have ever read) shows that intelligently crafted bedlam, anxiety-inducing chaos, and the absolute dissonance of violent oblivion can be a sweet, sick addiction. i fall on my knees and bow down to the evil genius that is pierce brown. this story (and series) is unparalleled. ↠ every star in the gorydamn galaxy

  3. 4 out of 5

    Petrik

    3.5/5 stars Gory (literally) damn insane, violent, bleak, and ruthless. Helldivers, prepare your soul to be hell-drilled by Dark Age’s brutality. “During war, the laws are silent.”—Quintus Tullius Cicero Two things first. If it has been a long time since you’ve read Iron Gold or Red Rising Saga, I strongly recommend you to reread the entire series before you read Dark Age. I didn’t do this and I truly believe that my reading experience of this book suffered from it. Secondly, throughout the years since Red Rising publ/> 3.5/5 stars Gory (literally) damn insane, violent, bleak, and ruthless. Helldivers, prepare your soul to be hell-drilled by Dark Age’s brutality. “During war, the laws are silent.”—Quintus Tullius Cicero Two things first. If it has been a long time since you’ve read Iron Gold or Red Rising Saga, I strongly recommend you to reread the entire series before you read Dark Age. I didn’t do this and I truly believe that my reading experience of this book suffered from it. Secondly, throughout the years since Red Rising publication, many people still insist that this series is for YA audience; by the time you read this book, you’ll probably be traumatized or maybe even loathe this book for its extreme darkness. Seriously, Dark Age is one of the darkest, bleakest, and goriest novel I’ve ever read in my life; the humor and heartwarming aspect of the series that’s usually common to find are close to non-existent in this installment. I will edit this review in the future when I’ve reread the series from the beginning in preparation for the sixth and—maybe—last book of the series, but for now, this is my thoughts and opinions on my first read-through Dark Age. “With every new endeavor, there’s always the hope that you will find happiness, be less lonely.” I’ve mentioned this before, out of all the books released in 2019, A Little Hatred by Joe Abercrombie and Dark Age by Pierce Brown are at the top of my most anticipated release list. I’ve pre-ordered Dark Age since February 2018, that’s one year six months ahead. I’ve never done that for any book, ever. My expectations for these books were extremely high, A Little Hatred exceeded it, but sadly, for the first time ever, I have to say that although I still enjoyed it overall, I didn’t find Dark Age, a book hailed by many of his fans as the best book in saga so far, as enjoyable as I hoped. “I once thought the greatest sin of war was violence. It isn’t. The greatest sin is it requires good men to become practical.” Dark Age is the fifth and penultimate installment of the Red Rising Saga by Pierce Brown. By this point of the series, it’s safe to say that I can’t talk about the plot at all unless I risked spoiling the story, so I won't be talking about the plot at all. Let me just say there’s no happy moment for the protagonists, and everyone is constantly tortured, tormented, maimed, and killed. How about that? The title of the book pretty much implied the tone of the book already: full-throttle darkness, depression, gore, brutality, bleak, death, violence, violence, and violence; this is by far the bleakest and darkest installment in the series so far. I honestly never expected the series to ever become this dark, and with the escalation of darkness, the pacing of the book felt off to me. There were many moments of supposed intensity that felt desensitized because of everlasting pages of explicit gorefest with no break. Imagine reading attempted rapes, impalements, genital mutilations, drug abuse, maimed, gore, deaths; you name it and it’s all here, for hundreds of pages. After a while, the constant exposure to explicit details of violence ended up becoming boredom. Pierce Brown is at his best when he combined hope, humor, and heartwarming moments with despair and terror into his narrative that’s full of thrilling action sequences. Unfortunately, this brilliance was lost most of the time in this book. Do note that if you check my reading history, you should know that I don’t mind reading violence, gore, and grimdark SFF in heavy doses. They just need to be paced accordingly, and I—with sadness—can’t say that Brown nailed the pacing of his action sequences correctly this time. “No god listens. There are only men. And what one does, another may undo. That is my only religion. That of the hand and the lever.” Brown sacrificed many staple moments of the series such as fantastic character developments, clear and concise plot coherence, engaging banters, in exchange for the extreme bleakness. Plus, there’s a severe lack of appearances from my favorite characters of the series; characters for me to root for were truly lacking compared to the previous books. There were many instances where the POV of the new characters from Iron Gold felt like fillers put for the sake of adding pages count. What Brown tried to achieve with them became clearer at the end but even then I still believe that it didn’t require that many pages. Thankfully, there’s a new perspective character to follow here; her chapters were relatively small compared to the other four POV’s but her storyline was easily my favorite in this book. I would like to also add that plot device that revolves around dead characters being resurrected is a personal pet peeve of mine; sometimes they worked, most often they don’t. Let’s just say that the one that Brown pulled off here didn’t work for me. “How many do not know you. How many will soon forget you. How many praise you today to offer contempt tomorrow. Permanence of fame, power, dominion of the individual, are illusions. All that will be measured, all that will last, is your mastery of yourself.” I’ve rambled on about the things that didn't work for me here, but rest assured that it’s not all bad. It’s time for me to talk about the incredible parts of the book that I loved. I have always loved Brown’s prose, that didn’t change here. If it weren’t because of his writing style, I probably would’ve DNFed this book somewhere in the middle. Although I have complained about the excessive bleak and violent nature of the book that made the pacing awkward, I won’t deny the fact that there were several devastating scenes that, in my opinion, were written so damn well. These characters suffered, a LOT. The horrible things they have to endure were insane, to say the least. And I can’t help but feel empathetic towards the key characters of the series. It’s also satisfying to see how much of the series has grown in terms of scope. Dark Age is massive in scope; the level of escalation in its scale is something that took me by surprise, and I’m thankful for it. “You know I believe we all begin equal parts light and dark. I fear you think your strength lies in your darkness. But the measure of a man is not the fear he sows in his enemies. It is the hope he gives his friends.” One last thing before I close this review, Brown successfully ended Dark Age with a bang. The closing sections of Part 3 and the entirety of Part 4 was absolutely brilliant; tremendously immersive, the twists and turns were written with magnificent clarity. These sections were a return to the greatness that I loved from Brown’s storytelling style. Action scenes full of palpable intensity and fury told in a cinematic fashion that made every brutal scene damn vivid. If I were to rate this book based on these parts, I would give it 5 stars rating in a heartbeat. It was truly brilliant. Plus, it also set up every single plotline for the grand conclusion to come in the next and final book. “But for all this new civilization’s love affair with technology, they’ve been seduced by their own cleverness and fail to understand the simple truth: lying is not a science, it is an art. And art will always be a human language.” Dark Age may not be as entertaining and enjoyable as the previous books, but it was certainly bleak, heart-shattering, and epic in scope. Many fans have started claiming that Dark Age is the best book in the series so far; unfortunately, I have to disagree with this notion. However, from the way the story ended here, the next book might truly end up becoming the best in the series for me. I bloodydamn look forward to seeing how it all concludes. Until then, I will endure. See you there, Helldivers. You can order the book from: Book Depository (Free shipping) You can find this and the rest of my reviews at Novel Notions

  4. 4 out of 5

    Lucia

    Red Rising Saga is unlike anything I have ever read and this fifth instalment only proves it. There is some gorydamn excellent writing craftmanship at play because Pierce Brown weaves multiple POVs in magical way that leaves you spellbound by this book and consumes all your waking thoughts. What other proof of greatness do you need than the fact that I read this 752-pages-long mammoth of a book inbetween taking care of hyperactive toddler in just couple of days? I may be sleep deprived but it has bee Red Rising Saga is unlike anything I have ever read and this fifth instalment only proves it. There is some gorydamn excellent writing craftmanship at play because Pierce Brown weaves multiple POVs in magical way that leaves you spellbound by this book and consumes all your waking thoughts. What other proof of greatness do you need than the fact that I read this 752-pages-long mammoth of a book inbetween taking care of hyperactive toddler in just couple of days? I may be sleep deprived but it has been worth it. All of you military strategy and war battle fans rejoice, this book will give you your fill and then some. War is raging in Solar System and Pierce Brown's storytelling makes it all come alive on the pages of this book, never shying away from showing us its horrors and despairs. Tone of this book, as title suggests, is a dark one. Pierce Brown takes his readers through roller coaster of emotions and as per usual spares us nothing. In my opinion, Dark Age is the most profound instalment of the saga to the date - the scale on which Pierce Brown plays his game is enormous and thought-out to the tiniest details to evoke all the feels from his readers. So prepare to expect the unexpected. I am excited for and simultaneously dreading what is waiting for us in the next (final?) book. PRE-REVIEW: "Alea iacta est." The die is cast and I am super excited to see how Pierce Brown is going to play this game! Iron Gold felt like it was "only" a setup for bigger things to come and I truly cannot wait for this book.

  5. 4 out of 5

    ash | emeraldbookowl

    GODSPEED, HOWLERS I need to go on record... If anything happens to Sevro, I riot. I am fully expecting the plot to look something like this... Red Rising 5/5 ★ Golden Son 5/5 ★ GODSPEED, HOWLERS I need to go on record... If anything happens to Sevro, I riot. I am fully expecting the plot to look something like this... Red Rising 5/5 ★ Golden Son 5/5 ★ Morning Star 5/5 ★ Iron Gold 5/5 ★

  6. 5 out of 5

    Gonzalo Urrutia

    This book is a monster. It draws you in with pretty lights and funny smells before nailing you to the ground, then eats you up bit by bit and looks you in the eye while it breaks everything you hold dear inside yourself. I kept going back in my mind to how Pierce said he wanted this trilogy to be about rebirth, after the end of a civilization and the dark ages. I kept thinking how brutal, in my very little knowledge, the Dark and Middle Ages actually were, trying to justify the brutality. T This book is a monster. It draws you in with pretty lights and funny smells before nailing you to the ground, then eats you up bit by bit and looks you in the eye while it breaks everything you hold dear inside yourself. I kept going back in my mind to how Pierce said he wanted this trilogy to be about rebirth, after the end of a civilization and the dark ages. I kept thinking how brutal, in my very little knowledge, the Dark and Middle Ages actually were, trying to justify the brutality. The thing is, brutality doesn't need justifying. This is book five and still Pierce Brown hasn't shown people doing anything that we don't actually do in real life today, somewhere in the world. Regardless, this book gave me hope. It is an incredible improvement over Iron Gold, and it leaves me impossibly hyped for book 6.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Bradley

    Okay, folks. This is a big book in a number of ways. It's not only huge, physically, but it's dense with action from the alpha to the omega. And it is BRUTAL. Just look at that title. Now assume that the death count will be on par with the Black Plague. Only it's just super-soldiers in mech armor with genius IQs sporting the most massive war-erections ever conceived and both sides are willing to cut no corners to annihilate each other. I'll be honest, I haven't been in much of a mood Okay, folks. This is a big book in a number of ways. It's not only huge, physically, but it's dense with action from the alpha to the omega. And it is BRUTAL. Just look at that title. Now assume that the death count will be on par with the Black Plague. Only it's just super-soldiers in mech armor with genius IQs sporting the most massive war-erections ever conceived and both sides are willing to cut no corners to annihilate each other. I'll be honest, I haven't been in much of a mood for total grimdark lately, but when it is done well, it is done well. And this SF Space-Opera is GRIM. WAY beyond it's YA roots, firmly in the territory of massive gore, mutilations, babies nailed to trees, sliced-and-diced monster horses, and so many wonderful characters slaughtered to the Blood God. I got to know and love new characters among the old, grew with them, and I died with them. What a nightmare. And sometimes it was too much for me. Almost everyone in these books is harder than nails, unable and unwilling to give an inch, and willing to kill everyone for any number of reasons. Revenge doesn't even begin to cover it. This is pure nightmare chaos. Nevermind the high idealism of the previous books or the eventual dark fall that came with the previous. This one will simply wash you in blood. Happy reading!

  8. 5 out of 5

    For.fictions.sake (Shelby)

    George RR Martin called and would like his lack of conscience back, PB. Dark Age makes Golden Son look like child’s play.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Gavin

    I'm not going to write a big review for Dark Age but that should definitely not be looked upon as a reflection of the books quality. I just struggle with reviews for books I really loved! Dark Age was my most anticipated read of all of 2019 and I was delighted it lived up to those high expectations. I'm sure this will be my best read of the calendar year and it definitely confirmed the whole Red Rising series as one of my all time favourite series. This series has the perfect blend of action, dr I'm not going to write a big review for Dark Age but that should definitely not be looked upon as a reflection of the books quality. I just struggle with reviews for books I really loved! Dark Age was my most anticipated read of all of 2019 and I was delighted it lived up to those high expectations. I'm sure this will be my best read of the calendar year and it definitely confirmed the whole Red Rising series as one of my all time favourite series. This series has the perfect blend of action, drama, romance, and shock happenings that keep it absolutely addictive reading. The story is pretty dark and intense, but that is mitigated by the humour and the undercurrent of hope that ran through the story. All in all it has pretty much everything I want in a story and it helps that Brown has an engaging writing style! I loved the fact that this 5th instalment of the series was by far the largest yet. It was nearly 34 hours long. The second longest book, Iron Gold, was only 23 hours long so it was quite the increase in length. It worked well though as Dark Age packed in a ton of action and cool happenings and had the feel of a true epic of the genre. I hope all the Red Rising books are this length going forward. There is more than enough going on in this world to justify the page time as Pierce Brown seems to have a knack for being able to create memorable and interesting characters and stories. I loved the stories of all 5 POV characters and felt like they all gave something different to the story which helped flesh out the worldbuilding and that in turn helped give the story a deeper and more complicated feel. We also met a few great new secondary characters in this one. The best being the villains Atlas and Ajax. My standout secondary character of this instalment was Alexander Au Arcon. He popped up in Iron Gold but I really felt like he came into his own in this book. All in all I loved this and cannot wait for the next instalment in the series. Hail Reaper!!! Rating: 5 stars. The easiest rating I've given all year! Audio Note: I might not have had much to say about the story itself but I've got a bunch to say about the audio and the crappy decisions made by Recorded Books! The 4th book in the series saw Recorded Books add three new narrators to the cast (to voice the three new POV characters). I felt that was not a great decision but it was one I ended up OK with as two of the three new narrators turned out to be pretty good (John Curless who voiced Ephraim and Aedin Moloney who voiced Lyria) while only Julian Elfer (who voiced Lysander's parts) was poor quality. This time around Tim Gerard Reynolds and John Curless returned to voice Darrow and Ephraim. I had no issue with that as both guys gave fantastic performances. We had to get used to a new narrator for the newly added Virginia POV. I believe it was Rendah Heywood. I think she did an OK job. The biggest issue was that Recorded books decided to recast the Lyria and Lysander parts. Moira Quirk was a decent enough narrator but her version of Lyria was so different from Moloney's version that it was definitely a bit jarring. The biggest issue was that Recorded Books botched the Lysander bits for the second time in as many books. The good news is that this time they actually cast a talented enough narrator in the form of James Langton. The bad news was that the production was awful and nobody at Recorded Books appear to have bothered to check that Langton was on board with accents and pronunciation of characters and names. Poor quality stuff from Recorded books. I felt Langton was actually a big upgrade on the awful Julian Elfer but his pronunciation of Cassius and the voice he gave to Darrow were both flat out horrific. None of it ruined my enjoyment of the story but it definitely does not reflect well upon Recorded Books. As a company they do not seem to care about the enjoyment of their customers. Let us hope they stick with this batch of narrators or just go back to having TGR do it solo as the last thing we need is more bloodydam recasting of the audio!

  10. 5 out of 5

    FanFiAddict

    Rating: ★★★★★+ Synopsis The #1 New York Times bestselling author of Morning Star returns to the Red Rising universe with the thrilling sequel to Iron Gold. For a decade Darrow led a revolution against the corrupt color-coded Society. Now, outlawed by the very Republic he founded, he wages a rogue war on Mercury in hopes that he can still salvage the dream of Eo. But as he leaves death and destruction in his wake, is he still the hero who broke the chains? Or will Rating: ★★★★★+ Synopsis The #1 New York Times bestselling author of Morning Star returns to the Red Rising universe with the thrilling sequel to Iron Gold. For a decade Darrow led a revolution against the corrupt color-coded Society. Now, outlawed by the very Republic he founded, he wages a rogue war on Mercury in hopes that he can still salvage the dream of Eo. But as he leaves death and destruction in his wake, is he still the hero who broke the chains? Or will another legend rise to take his place? Lysander au Lune, the heir in exile, has returned to the Core. Determined to bring peace back to mankind at the edge of his sword, he must overcome or unite the treacherous Gold families of the Core and face down Darrow over the skies of war-torn Mercury. But theirs are not the only fates hanging in the balance. On Luna, Mustang, Sovereign of the Republic, campaigns to unite the Republic behind her husband. Beset by political and criminal enemies, can she outwit her opponents in time to save him? Once a Red refugee, young Lyria now stands accused of treason, and her only hope is a desperate escape with unlikely new allies. Abducted by a new threat to the Republic, Pax and Electra, the children of Darrow and Sevro, must trust in Ephraim, a thief, for their salvation—and Ephraim must look to them for his chance at redemption. As alliances shift, break, and re-form—and power is seized, lost, and reclaimed—every player is at risk in a game of conquest that could turn the Rising into a new Dark Age. Review How in the world do you sum up your thoughts on a book that you have been awaiting for what seems like a decade? (it as only been a little over a year and a half BUT IT FEELS SO MUCH LONGER). Is the hype real? Was it worth diving into the second I received it, devouring it in less than 2 days (it is 776 pages afterall), and not giving myself a second to ponder on what I read so I could bring my thoughts to you? YOU BET YOUR GORYDAMN ARSE IT IS WORTH IT. I finished Iron Gold (loved it) and slowly ramped up the anticipation for Dark Age once the cover was revealed and a solid date was announced. Then it was delayed. But you know… I wasn’t upset about it. People have been waiting so much longer for Winds of Winter, The Doors of Stone, and The Thorns of Emberlain. We are talking YEARS, peeps. Pierce Brown can take all of the time he needs to perfect this book. And by jove did he perfect it. Dark Age is going to go down as the BEST book in the series. I never thought anything could top Golden Son, but this thick tome puts it to shame. Not only is it almost double the length, but Dark Age doesn’t take its foot off of the accelerator; it literally mashes it through the floorboard and into the base of the engine compartment. There isn’t a single second to take a breath before death, destruction, and bloodydamn mayhem are afoot and every single character you have come to know and love is at its mercy. The best way to (as accurately as possible) explain this book is as so: Game of Thrones has a baby with The Expanse. Then, said baby, once it comes of age, starts to have feelings/longs for the offspring of Vikings and a mash-up of 300 and Greek/Roman Mythology. BUT THERE IS SO MUCH MORE TO IT, YOU GUYS. Not a single character is left untouched by the chaos that began in Red Rising, and much like the storylines of Iron Gold, we are matched with multiple POVs from the biggest names in the series and a couple we found last time around: Darrow, Lysander, Mustang, Lyria, and Ephraim. As story arcs cross, motivations become muddied, alliances shift, and love becomes an emotion for the lost, power and survival become the only focus, however impossible they may seem. Massive and intense battles, universe-wide world-building, thoroughly fleshed-out characters, and a never-ending chess match being played across the galaxy. What more can you ask for? No all in all or in conclusion. If you have been reading up to this point, you already have a copy or plan on it. If you haven’t given this series a try…

  11. 4 out of 5

    Skip

    Not sure I can read a sixth book in this series. Senseless violence, mass killings, savagery, gore, torture, rape, baby killing: a truly grim commentary on society by Pierce Brown. The writing is good, but there did not seem to be a coherent plot, which is exacerbated by the multiple POVs. And despite a character summary at the beginning, it was hard to keep track of the good guys and the ever expanding roster of bad guys. Asking readers to keep track of multiple names for the same characters is Not sure I can read a sixth book in this series. Senseless violence, mass killings, savagery, gore, torture, rape, baby killing: a truly grim commentary on society by Pierce Brown. The writing is good, but there did not seem to be a coherent plot, which is exacerbated by the multiple POVs. And despite a character summary at the beginning, it was hard to keep track of the good guys and the ever expanding roster of bad guys. Asking readers to keep track of multiple names for the same characters is an unnecessary burden too. It is even annoying how many times characters return from the dead and/or recover from mortal wounds. Occasionally I finish a book and think this would have been much better if it has been 100 pages shorter. Not this one though, it needed to be 300+ pages shorter, focusing on the major storylines. Shame on Brown's editor, Tricia Narwani, for not pruning this down.

  12. 5 out of 5

    David S (David's Book Meanderings)

    Click on over to https://fanfiaddict.com/ to check out this and other reviews! *Spoiler* section included at the end If I had to describe Dark Age in one word it would be brutal. This book was absolutely, by far, the darkest of the Red Rising series. I kept thinking throughout this book, especially after a certain part, that this was in fact grimdark Sci Fi because it was just that dark. I absolutely loved it. Dark Age was a crazy, intense, wild, non-stop, action packed ride that just w Click on over to https://fanfiaddict.com/ to check out this and other reviews! *Spoiler* section included at the end If I had to describe Dark Age in one word it would be brutal. This book was absolutely, by far, the darkest of the Red Rising series. I kept thinking throughout this book, especially after a certain part, that this was in fact grimdark Sci Fi because it was just that dark. I absolutely loved it. Dark Age was a crazy, intense, wild, non-stop, action packed ride that just wouldn’t let up. The pace was very fast and I think this increased the stakes dramatically. Our heroes had to be smarter, faster, and deadlier because their enemies were the greatest they’d ever come against. One of the biggest weaknesses with multiple POV novels is that sometimes not all of the characters are interesting or there is nothing happening around them so you as the reader become disinterested. This is not the case in Dark Age. Every time I switched POV’s there was always something interesting happening to each character that kept me engaged and intrigued. Of course I had my favorite POV’s Darrow and Ephraim, but seeing Lysander’s machinations, Mustang’s cunning, and Lyria getting some deeper character development was all enjoyable reading. Speaking of characters, I have to give a shout out to Ephraim. In my opinion, Ephraim has had the best character arc of anyone in the new trilogy so far. He has been the comedic relief often in what so far has been a really dark series. Even more than that though, he is a return to why I started and will continue to read Red Rising. Characters that are real and that you can really empathize with and understand where they are coming from. I was really impressed by the way that Pierce Brown wrote Ephraim’s processing of grief in both Iron Gold and Dark Age. I just couldn’t help but root for him. I enjoyed Darrow’s POV in this one. The battles of Mercury are epic and intense and he is always in the middle of them. The Reaper has returned in full force and I couldn’t have been more happy with what we saw of the Reaper in action. It is clear in the 10 years of war that Darrow has grown even better as a fighter and commander. There was also a lot of introspection and doubt of the rightness of his cause. This was a return to the Darrow of the first trilogy, but more mature. The Darrow that may not always be sure of what is right, but does the best he can. The Darrow that may not be strong enough, but has his friends as his strong support. I enjoyed Mustang’s POV. It was fun to get to see the behind the scenes work of the Sovereign and see what she was like from her own point of view. It was also really great to see her support and love for Darrow confirmed time and time again throughout all the darkness of the events happening around them. Lyria finally got interesting! I never had anything against Lyria in Iron Gold. I just never found her compelling. However, her POV got more and more interesting as Dark Age went along and I started to really love where her story was going and where it will go. I really enjoyed the politicking between the Core Golds and how it impacts them as individuals as well as the ongoing war with the Republic. Lysander’s POV especially shows a lot of this and it’s really interesting to see it through a Gold’s eyes. Lysander changes quite a bit in this book and my opinion of him changed as well. I can’t give more of my opinion about him without spoilers so if you want to see more of that look in that section. I think the only thing that I wish Dark Age would have done just a little bit better was to slow down for the big moments. Everything was happening so fast at times it almost felt like those moments just passed us by and we weren’t able to properly process them or give them their due. However, that is my only complaint and it is a small one. This book shook me and I am still feeling the effects days after finishing it. I never felt that any of the characters I’ve come to know and love were safe. There were moments I laughed and ones where I cried. Where I was scared, horrified, amused, thrilled, disgusted, and just plain numb. I’m still not sure I’ve recovered even as I write this. Undoubtedly, one of the best books of the year. “Hail Libertas, Hail Reaper!” Now for *SPOILERS* Seriously MAJOR Spoilers ahead I warned you... RIP Ephraim, Alexander, Orion, Ulysses, Sefi, and Daxo. I hope I didn't miss anyone. Honestly, all of these hit me hard. Ephraim and Alexander because I loved their characters and I did not expect their deaths at all. Their deaths happened so quick! Alexander's death felt almost cheap. Ephraim's though did feel like the logical culmination of his redemption arc. Although I was sad that he died he did it in self sacrifice. There couldn't have been a more perfect ending for someone who started out so self centered and bitter in Iron Gold, although it was rather disturbing having him see his own heart being eaten. I also can't believe Pierce Brown had the balls to have the Red Hand kill Sevro and Victra's day old baby so graphically. That was horrific. I thought the Jackal clone was completely unnecessary. I wish it was just Lillith coming back on her own and sponsored by the Society as the mastermind behind it all. Just added an unnecessary complexity to the plot and I honestly didn't need to see the jackal again. I loved him as the villain in the original trilogy and felt it wrapped up his role well when he died in Morning Star. I'm just hoping he's not going to be a major player in the next book. I hate you Lysander. I hate you so much. You think you are so much better than Darrow, but you never even consider how wrong your own actions are/could be. Gold clearly cannot rule well without accountability but you can't see that you self righteous, obnoxious pixie. Spoilery rant done.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Brittany (The Book Addict's Guide/Novelly Yours)

    Initial Impressions 8/1/19: I hate this book. (I don't hate this book.) I hate Pierce Brown. (I don't hate Pierce Brown.) I won't reveal any actual spoilers but if you haven't read the book yet, I don't recommend reading this review because it's just impossible to talk about without revealing SOME small things. DARK AGE is the book to break us all, friends. Remind me why we were excited to read this book? Because I just got epically crushed. SO much happens in DARK AGE but it never felt like it was too Initial Impressions 8/1/19: I hate this book. (I don't hate this book.) I hate Pierce Brown. (I don't hate Pierce Brown.) I won't reveal any actual spoilers but if you haven't read the book yet, I don't recommend reading this review because it's just impossible to talk about without revealing SOME small things. DARK AGE is the book to break us all, friends. Remind me why we were excited to read this book? Because I just got epically crushed. SO much happens in DARK AGE but it never felt like it was too much, even when it was too much to wrap my brain around. Some authors can overdo it by having too many different things flying around, too many character deaths (or not enough) but Pierce Brown knows exactly where to reveal everything and exactly how to wound our souls. One thing I really appreciate here is actually getting the character's opinions of each other. There are five POVs and almost all of the POV characters are separated for most/all of the book (depending on who they are). We also get new POV Virginia/Mustang, which was incredibly interesting, and that's one of the ones that intrigued me the most. I loved seeing how she perceived other characters, especially Darrow, and it was especially fascinating because of how smart she is. We get more than just emotion from her since she's highly intelligent and also the Sovereign. Lyria and Lysander got new narrators for DARK AGE (thank you) and while I still don't love Lyria and her place the book, she definitely has some really important roles and her character really stepped up in so many ways. Lysander became an even more complicated character and I found myself sort of rooting for him, until I remembered that he's not actually a good guy here and his involvement in anything could be entirely catastrophic. I did wish that we got a few more reunions, from POV characters as well as just about anyone from the old crews. It was hard at times with so many previous favorites being so far apart (WE NEED MORE SEVRO) but I think everything will just come crashing together in the next book... I hope. One thing about this book and really the whole series is that Pierce Brown may be a little too smart for me sometimes. His political plotting is incredible and it's so deep and layered that at times it's hard to follow, especially on audio. It's not necessarily in a bad way -- I know he knows what he's doing -- but there are so many big players, different leaders of different planets, battles, grudges, and near-death experiences that sometimes people just pop in and out and I don't know if they're actually important or not. Sometimes important characters are seen briefly and I'm not sure if that's supposed to be notable and other times small characters become big. Things from IRON GOLD sort of disappeared into the background and then at the very end of the book become important again, but I also understand that as a second book in what I'm guessing is another trilogy, it'll all come full circle again. It's not necessarily a complaint but I guess the one thing that trips me up a little bit. Before publication, someone said that this book had at least five GOLDEN SON-like twists (not an exact quote but something like that) and ... no. DARK AGE had like 25 twists. Any time I've complained about there not being enough momentum in a book? DARK AGE was constantly moving, providing twists and surprises from the very beginning. It was action-packed and yet paced very well, filling in with some slower moving passages to keep that world-building going, layering in more politics, and letting readers grasp even more about each character. I even loved how the kids, Pax and Electra, became more involved in this book and were real characters instead of just being pawns or fillers. They also built relationships, became real people, and are going to be important in the next book as well. After this, I don't know if I can handle another book but I also need it immediately. I'm actually really, really glad that this publication date got pushed back because if this is what Pierce Brown needed to have DARK AGE be perfect, it was well worth the wait. I always want books to be their best and not just rushed to meet a deadline. Now I'm wondering in agony how long we have to wait for the next book though because this was a honkin' huge book and incredibly dense so it's going to be torture waiting! But I'm sure that will be well worth it too.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Sh3lly

    Book 5 will be called "Dark Age" - from Pierce Brown's Facebook December 15, 2017. "Sleigh bells are in the air, cider is on the stove, and I'm hard at work on book five. It is bloodydamn pleasure to announce DARK AGE will be coming soon. Quite soon." Huh, it automatically saved it with the spoiler box checked, but there is no spoiler in the title announcement, Goodreads! That is not a spoiler, is it?? Weird. :P

  15. 4 out of 5

    Micperk

    I absolutely no-lifed this book. It was around 4:00 am, still wide awake, that I realized I have a severe reading problem and that Pierce Brown books are at the top of the addiction chart. It was also around this point that I realized I should not become attached to any of the characters he writes....because... he ALWAYS KILLS THEM. Like bro, every chapter I read I'm just waiting for the guillotine to fall on somebody else and crush me once again. I won't spoil anything but before you read this I absolutely no-lifed this book. It was around 4:00 am, still wide awake, that I realized I have a severe reading problem and that Pierce Brown books are at the top of the addiction chart. It was also around this point that I realized I should not become attached to any of the characters he writes....because... he ALWAYS KILLS THEM. Like bro, every chapter I read I'm just waiting for the guillotine to fall on somebody else and crush me once again. I won't spoil anything but before you read this book go meditate or something to mentally fortify yourself. Once again the pacing is full break neck speed in this book. You're immediately thrown into the thick of it and it never stops. The characters grow, the story grows, the action grows, and you get a front seat ticket to all of it. This book delivers everything you've come to expect from the series and Pierce Brown does an amazing job of still delivering high quality books this deep into the series. As much as I love Darrow other characters have managed to become just as important and sometimes more interesting to read than his arc. I consider it amazing writing to make someone relatively new to the story feel just as important and interesting as the MC. I will say this book felt different than the others. Until this book I feel like Pierce Brown let the story evolve very organically. Everything the story did was based upon the actions of others and the personality of the characters in the story. In this one I feel like he introduced some new elements to create a story that he wanted to write. It wasn't bad in any form, but like I said, for me it just felt different than the others. Long story short this was another incredible book by Pierce Brown and I'm sure I'll be reading this book a couple more times in my life. If you're a fan of the series you should hurry up and pick this up and enjoy the ride. If you're new to the series do yourselves a favor and go pick it up, this has become one of my absolute favorite series and might become one of yours also.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Savannah Holland

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. DNF at 209 Continuing this series was a mistake It’s great that we had to wait 5 books for a Mustang PoV only to end up with her being brutalized and assaulted by a group before being publicly humiliated. #lovethatshit Could have done without Darrow nearly being raped too but I guess I’m really asking too much at this point That one specific plot twist was stupid and lazy. Bad storytelling I’m out Also Lysander “the pro slavery golds are honorable” au Lune c DNF at 209 Continuing this series was a mistake It’s great that we had to wait 5 books for a Mustang PoV only to end up with her being brutalized and assaulted by a group before being publicly humiliated. #lovethatshit Could have done without Darrow nearly being raped too but I guess I’m really asking too much at this point That one specific plot twist was stupid and lazy. Bad storytelling I’m out Also Lysander “the pro slavery golds are honorable” au Lune can eat my entire ass

  17. 5 out of 5

    Charlie - A Reading Machine

    Despite the 4 star rating I found this really difficult to read. It's a magnificent continuation of the story and shows us new sides to old characters as well as making us fall in love with some new ones. The action sequences are formidable and glorious with the Iron Rain literally taking my breath away and leaving me absolutely shredded and the epic scale of the space warfare topping anything else I've ever experienced. Brown's writing has grown more mature and nuanced with every book and Dark Despite the 4 star rating I found this really difficult to read. It's a magnificent continuation of the story and shows us new sides to old characters as well as making us fall in love with some new ones. The action sequences are formidable and glorious with the Iron Rain literally taking my breath away and leaving me absolutely shredded and the epic scale of the space warfare topping anything else I've ever experienced. Brown's writing has grown more mature and nuanced with every book and Dark Age is certainly no different with every sentence embedded with meticulous world building that breathes life into the planets themselves. It is hard not to feel like you are right fucking there, in a spacesuit, fighting for your life. Only great books can do that. There were some things that I didn't so much enjoy. It's dark...as dark as can be, perhaps a little long at 800 pages and has so many players that I personally found it hard to track them all. The names of some of those characters didn't help. A chat between Alexander au Arcos, Atalantia au Grimmus, Asmodeus au Carthii and Rhone Ti Flavinius doesn't really flow off the tongue and sometimes by the time I'd sounded out all the names in my head and recalled which one was which I lost track of the central point of their conversation. That being said there was on thing above the others that made Dark Age difficult to read... It is hard to witness incredible pain and suffering being inflicted on characters you love. Harder still sometimes to see them dish it out to others when we so desperately want them to find some peace. No one gets off easy in this book and much of the death is shown to be as senseless as it should be, even so by the end there was one character who I think I'd happily kill myself. God knows what the final book will bring us but we've been given a tiny sliver of hope. I'd like to think Pierce has given us his worst however I have no doubt he has some surprises left for the finale and we'll all be tearing our hair out again in no time.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Marjolein

    What the fuck. WHAT. THE. FUCK. I don't even know if I'm still alive. Might have suffered multiple minor heart attacks. Will definitely have to reread this. Review = coming AFTER my vacation. UPDATE: Review coming AFTER my reread. I'll be rereading Dark Age when the Hodder&Stoughton paperback comes out in February 2020!

  19. 5 out of 5

    Zutto

    Bruh this book is so fucking thicc that Pierce Brown could kill Darrow and bring him back again like 5 times. Buckle up bitches 'cause shit's about to e s c a l a t e

  20. 4 out of 5

    Lorna (lornaslibrary)

    Plus + Lyria's character development is so good (despite having very little page time compared to the other POV characters) + I would die for Lyria, Ephraim, and Volga Minus - Soooooooooooo many dead LGBT+ characters - There's no plot. It's 750 pages of no plot - Violence for the sake of violence. It's like Pierce Brown is just using shock factor to make up for the lack of plot - It feels like after finishing the original trilogy, Pierce wasn't rea/>

  21. 4 out of 5

    ...

    SEPTEMBER 11??? 2018?? TWO BOOKS IN ONE YEAR? DO YOU WANT TO KILL ME? Oh actually yes. And pierce better not change that like Iron gold (but if he needs more time I can't complain) Update: February 2019 huh... I knew it was too good to be true.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Braiden Smith

    Absolutely my most anticipated book of 2019. I picked up Red Rising on a complete whim. Reading the first book in one sitting, I then found myself driving to the bookstore at 9 o'clock at night to buy the rest of the series. Howlers are love. Howlers are life.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Stacy

    No spoilers in this rapid review of Dark Age. I give it 4.5 stars. Thank you for this masterpiece of a series, Pierce Brown. He describes it as high tech Rome meets space Vikings in the acknowledgements, and this explanation makes me smile. It’s the easiest way to sum up the series for those who haven’t read it. Age’s plot summary might go something like this: Who’s good? Who’s evil? Is anyone purely one or the other? And who will ally with who to face off in what’s sure to be a giant, definitive batt/> No spoilers in this rapid review of Dark Age. I give it 4.5 stars. Thank you for this masterpiece of a series, Pierce Brown. He describes it as high tech Rome meets space Vikings in the acknowledgements, and this explanation makes me smile. It’s the easiest way to sum up the series for those who haven’t read it. Age’s plot summary might go something like this: Who’s good? Who’s evil? Is anyone purely one or the other? And who will ally with who to face off in what’s sure to be a giant, definitive battle in the finale? Age explores these themes over and over as well as family, true friendship, and loyalty to self versus to loyalty a cause. Oh yeah, and there are some epic battles and one-on-one altercations, too. What else can I say to advertise for the Red Rising Saga? Brown’s books feature a crazy amount of action, demonstrate unforgettable relationships, and showcase his amazing storytelling ability, which is full of twists and turns. While his insights and writing have always been impressive, Brown has grown with his characters. He’s gained wisdom through experience right along with Darrow, as evidenced by the continued improvement of his brutal yet poetic prose and his musings about humanity. Age might be the most complex book—and the Red Rising series might have the most epic scope—of any I’ve ever read. This is a compliment to Brown, but it also caused some issues as I read. I had to check the character list at the beginning of the book again and again to remind myself who many characters were. I need a flow chart to truly appreciate (and remember) everything Brown has dreamed up, how events and families are tied together, and everyone who’s been killed off (and how and by whom). The large cast of characters and the plethora of events in the first four books is hard to keep straight. My most common way to consume books is in audio form, but I had to read at least part of this one in Kindle to get my footing. When I did listen instead of read, I had to slow down my narration pace from my normal 1.25x to 1x to allow myself more time to think while I listened. But I can’t reiterate enough that the effort was worth it! In the last quarter of the book, Brown drops some bombshells, and it gets very exciting. After all the upheaval and discontent Brown has created, I can’t help but wonder what the eventual victors can possibly do to establish a society that works and a government that’s fair and permanent. So far he’s shown us that in the Red Rising universe, even those with the best intentions fall short of creating a strong and lasting nation. Thus I can’t wait to read the finale to see what type of society and government he constructs! I highly recommend this book and this series. I read and review a lot of YA series, so I need to let our readers know that this one’s adult for sure. The first book had a YA, Hunger Games-ish tone, but the other installments cover mature themes beyond that of the YA genre. If you like adult sci-fi and aren’t put off by violence, then you will likely love the Red Rising Saga like I do. Brown is one of the best authors out there, in my opinion, and I hope more and more readers discover his books. P.S. I hate to disappoint Red Rising fans who haven’t picked up Dark Age yet, but there was not nearly enough Sevro in this book. And if I’m being honest, even though he had much more page time than Sevro, there wasn’t enough Darrow either. Their portion of the story is told, yet there are so many points of view that I was sad to not spend more time with them. I just wanted to warn fellow Darrow and Sevro fans ahead of time. 😉 Read all of our reviews here. Check out our full book recaps here.

  24. 5 out of 5

    GrilledCheeseSamurai (Scott)

    Pierce Brown just tore off my face and shoved napalm down my throat. And you know what...I still said thank you.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Nafeeza

    This may be my new favorite of the series. All the bloodydamn stars! RTC

  26. 5 out of 5

    Steven

    Damon you, Pierce Brown. I hate you right now. Yet again I allowed you to break off pieces of my heart under the guise of breaking the chains. And yet again, I am enthralled, even as my shattering heart loses piece after piece. Thanks for a bloodstream good book. Let's hope the next one comes soon. I'm sure it'll be years. *weeps*

  27. 4 out of 5

    Karen’s Library

    As broken as my heart is after reading this, there are not enough stars in the universe to rate this book. Pierce has completely outdone himself in Dark Age and I have no idea how he can possibly top this one. I have pretty much lost count as to how many times I dropped this book on my lap gasping, or even yelling at Pierce, as he broke my heart again and again and again. I don’t think I’ve ever had a book affect me this much. Move over George R R Martin! Pierce has bested you! In Dark Age, we g As broken as my heart is after reading this, there are not enough stars in the universe to rate this book. Pierce has completely outdone himself in Dark Age and I have no idea how he can possibly top this one. I have pretty much lost count as to how many times I dropped this book on my lap gasping, or even yelling at Pierce, as he broke my heart again and again and again. I don’t think I’ve ever had a book affect me this much. Move over George R R Martin! Pierce has bested you! In Dark Age, we get 5 POVs as Mustang/Virginia gets her own chapters, in addition to Darrow, Lysander Au Lune, Ephraim, and Lyria. I switched back and forth between the hardback and audiobook, depending on what I was doing. I loved ALL of the narrators this time. Tim Gerard Reynolds was back as Darrow, thank goodness. I have no idea how to go about talking about this book without spoilers, so if you want to know what it’s about, read the synopsis. I CAN say that it’s Pierce’s masterpiece to date. Book 6 of the Red Rising Saga can’t get here fast enough for me!

  28. 4 out of 5

    Raquel

    9.5/10 — ★★★★★ «If we cannot engineer salvation, then vengeance will suffice.» Dark Age is not a perfect book yet it is a masterpiece reading of gruesome sci-fi battles, a story where Star Wars meets (finally) Alien, moments of despair, endless plot-twists, and a nerve-racking ending in cliffhanger. I’ve awed in horror and been in shock with really dark scenes and deaths, I’ve suffered reading through the POVs of beloved characters, cried rivers here and there, but laughing out loud too. There are probably minor holes/> 9.5/10 — ★★★★★ «If we cannot engineer salvation, then vengeance will suffice.» Dark Age is not a perfect book yet it is a masterpiece reading of gruesome sci-fi battles, a story where Star Wars meets (finally) Alien, moments of despair, endless plot-twists, and a nerve-racking ending in cliffhanger. I’ve awed in horror and been in shock with really dark scenes and deaths, I’ve suffered reading through the POVs of beloved characters, cried rivers here and there, but laughing out loud too. There are probably minor holes, I’m not completely pleased with a resource Brown uses since Golden Son, and although his writing is not astounding, has a classical grandeur I’ve truly appreciated thanks to this novel. One of the things that stood out for me was the continuing development of the world-building thanks to the use of different POVs (I really liked it back when I read Iron Gold ), and I especially appreciated reading from Virginia POV. Without doubt, Dark Age is my favourite instalment so far in the entire Red Rising series, and I can’t wait to see what Pierce Brown does in the final book. Killing a lot of amazing characters, that’s for sure. «I kept looking for hope in the world. Expecting the world to supply deliverance if I plucked the right chords (…) But that is not the nature of the world. Its nature is to consume. In time, it will consume us all, and the spheres will spin until they are too consumed when our sun dies. Maybe that is the point of it. Knowing that though one day darkness will cover us, at least your eyes were open to see moments of light.»

  29. 5 out of 5

    Negar

    Shit escalates. Yeah, that's it. That's the whole book!

  30. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer

    I will love these characters until I die. --------------------------------------------- Two freaking books in 2018 from Pierce Brown ? Oh dear, it's gonna be the end of me.

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