eBook Dark Age by Pierce Brown download

eBook Dark Age by Pierce Brown download

08/18/2019   |   by admin

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • Thebestselling author of Morning Star returns to the Red Rising universe with the thrilling sequel to Iron Gold.

eBook Dark Age by Pierce Brown download

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Dark Age by Pierce Brown details:

  • File Size: 8383 KB
  • Format: pdf, epub, mobi, rtf, docx, audiobook
  • Print Length: 776 pages
  • Publisher: Del Rey (July 30, 2019)
  • Publication Date: July 30, 2019
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B078G2YS3N

eBook summary Dark Age by Pierce Brown

He broke the chains. Then he broke the world….

A decade ago Darrow led a revolution, and laid the foundations for a new world. Now he’s an outlaw.

Cast out of the very Republic he founded, with half his fleet destroyed, he wages a rogue war on Mercury. Outnumbered and outgunned, is he still the hero who broke the chains? Or will he become the very evil he fought to destroy?

In his darkening shadow, a new hero rises.

Lysander au Lune, the displaced heir to the old empire, has returned to bridge the divide between the Golds of the Rim and Core. If united, their combined might may prove fatal to the fledgling Republic.

On Luna, the embattled Sovereign of the Republic, Virginia au Augustus, fights to preserve her precious demokracy and her exiled husband. But one may cost her the other, and her son is not yet returned.

Abducted by enemy agents, Pax au Augustus must trust in a Gray thief, Ephraim, for his salvation.

Far across the void, Lyria, a Red refugee accused of treason, makes a desperate bid for freedom with the help of two unlikely new allies.

Fear dims the hopes of the Rising, and as power is seized, lost, and reclaimed, the worlds spin on and on toward a new Dark Age.

Don’t miss any of Pierce Brown’s Red Rising Saga:
RED RISING • GOLDEN SON • MORNING STAR • IRON GOLD • DARK AGE

If I live to read the next book, I’m afraid!! 😳

Well, one of my special editions came today 😉

Happy Reading!

‘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 everread) 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

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.

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…

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.

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.

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.

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.

Starts out like Frank Miller’s 300 only many orders of magnitude greater. Call it Pierce Brown’s 3,000,000. Darrow and his legions are trapped on Mercury and the hordes are descending. And that’s just the beginning. Nothing more for you, my fine Howlers. Read the bloodydamn book … and don’t forget your tissues. Pierce loves tears. Drinks them like a fine scotch.

Omnis Vir Lupus. Wow. Just wow. Many authors tell many a fine story, but let’s face it, most are rather shallow. Easy to put down. Easy to go on with our lives after the reading. Perhaps I’m jaded, sure, but I find it increasingly hard to get lost in a good book. Then there’s our boy, Pierce Gorydamn Brown. Pierce writes with such depth that you’ll not just get lost within the pages of his books, you may just drown trying to reach the hellspawned surface. And returning to reality be damned. Work is for saps. Reality is boring. And Dark Age? Well, if Red Rising was for kids (right), then Dark Age is for adults. Read the bloodydamn book. Tissues … scotch …

Side note: Red Rising and it siblings must be adapted to the screen, and no mere movies will do them justice. This work demands Game of Thrones treatment. Hear that HBO? Better gets off your collective asses and snap this shit up before Netflix or Amazon beats you to it. Hail Reaper! Hail Libertas!

About author Pierce Brown

I never intended to write Red Rising. Then again, I never intended on becoming a writer either.

In hindsight, it checks out. Storytelling has always been a peculiar and significant source of magic in my life. If my parents got a hold of you and maybe a glass or two of vino, they’d say I was always going to be a writer. They’d tell you stories about how I’d fall asleep in my car seat chattering some nonsense about dragons, cowboys, and misunderstood aliens. Personally, I assumed I was destined to be an astronaut. But math and I have always shared a mildly antagonistic rapport. So here we are.

Until I was seven, my parents would read me stories at night. Sometimes from the Bible, or abridged classics, or a collection of folk tales. But it was the stories from my grandfather I remember best. I’d sit for hours listening as he talked and smoked unfiltered Camel cigarettes on the patio. Sometimes he’d sneak into the pantry and bribe me into telling him where my parents hid the cookies. He was a diabetic with a mad sweet tooth.

Eternally grumpy or joyous, never in between, he told tales with madcap passion. Each was taller than the next. They were absurd. Truly, irrevocably absurd—full of tricksters and backwater bandits and clever outsiders and logical gaps as wide as the Mississippi (which according to him could be ten miles). Once he even said he rode out a flash flood atop a floating barn roof with nothing but Coca-Cola to sustain him for three days. I’m pretty sure the barn roof was also floating down the bayou, but I could have embellished that in the listening. Most of the stories were made up, of course. But back then it made him a giant. It made him seem like the keeper of some great hoard of knowledge—an initiate in a magic world I’d yet to set out into.

That’s how stories have always felt to me—huge, magical, strange. Over sized emotions and worlds stuffed between the flaps of a book or told across a campfire. Even the worst help you escape your world, while the best help you understand it. I needed that as a kid, because I never much felt like I had a place on this planet.

My family moved seven times before I was eighteen. I went to more than ten schools. I lost track, to be honest. Might have been twelve. Anyway. Friends were interchangeable, temporary, the longest only lasting four years. It was always a new ecosystem. A new bully, a new principal’s office, a new law of the cafeteria jungle.

My parents were selfless when it came to raising my sister and me. But I must have driven them to their wits’ end. I didn’t get on well in most of the schools. I was diagnosed with a learning disability. I struggled even to read and spell, having to use Hooked on Phonics to keep up with classmates in some schools. While in others I sprinted past them and got so bored I’d get extra work sheets just to shut me up. I had too much energy. Tested well, performed poorly. Disliked studying, didn’t mind fighting. Those few celestial teachers who gave mutual respect to students, I loved with my whole heart. But those who didn’t, I abhorred, and told them so, which always went over well.

I often felt like an alien, but I was too young to realize most of us usually do.

I found refuge in books and for a little while in the forests of Iowa, which I could populate with the characters from those books. But when I exchanged the rural school there for a private school in Texas, I reached a sort of crucible.

In Texas, we had no backyard. I was used to a Goonies lifestyle—roaming the woods, exploring old barns, building forts, and playing ‘dodge this huge clump of dirt’ with neighborhood hooligans. Then suddenly I was tossed in mid-year into the ecosystem of an all-male school designed to groom young men for ‘excellence’. It was Lord of the Flies with starched collars and roller backpacks instead of spears and rocks. And the school itself was rigid—the sort that cares far more about its reputation than your education. With many teachers, you either shut up and fit, or you got left behind.

So, I shut up and tried to make myself fit.

Very quickly I began to understand what most adults know: The world doesn’t give two cents about us, never mind what we want to do with our lives. It wants us to conform. To sacrifice individuality for predictability. I felt squashed and retreated even more into books, especially after the early death of a friend.

Even with that retreat, it wasn’t until I left high school that I realized it was even possible to be a writer. Up to that point, writers were strange giants. Tolkien, Heinlein, Huxley, Shelley, Homer, Rowling stood tall as mountains, distant as the Moon.  They were revered institutions, masters of complex literary mechanisms. I wasn’t one of those unearthly creatures. Hell, I couldn’t even get into AP English.

The realization that it was possible to actually write myself came during a muggy Dallas summer just after school had ended. I was off to college soon, thinking I was going to be lawyer or something ‘excellent’. I was not terribly excited about all that. So, of course, I was reading. My dog was sitting on my chest and I flipped to the back of the book to see the picture of the writer. Shit, I thought. This erudite master of the written language is a baby. Like, five years older than me.

It came down like a thunderbolt: Well, if he can do it, why the hell do I have to be a lawyer? James Spader is one on TV. James Spader is awesome. And even he looks like he’s not having that much fun, and his best lawyer friend is William Shatner. Being a writer, being a weird scribe who seldom shaves and rarely leaves the comfort of his pajamas, well that sounds far more interesting.

I started writing that night. Eighteen bizarre pages of frantic chicken-scratch that would become the first chapter of a seven-hundred-page fantasy novel containing as much literary merit as a package of Hot Cheetos (which are the best, by the way). But the seal had broken. I was liberated. Free. I knew what I was, even if I suspected I was dreadful at it. Whenever a mentor would chuckle when I said I wanted to be a novelist (which happened often), or whenever a friend would smirk and humor me (which happened even more often), I took the doubt as rocket fuel. I would daydream stories instead of making friends in college. I would write anywhere: from the hallway floors between classes to the passenger seat of my car, to the DMV waiting line. When I had work, I would wake up when it was still dark and fuel my manic stream of prose with half liters of coffee. I was obsessed. Elated.

Agents were less elated. I wrote six books in five years and received more than a hundred and a half rejection letters in return. I was twenty-two, on the wrong end of a relationship gone south, and very dramatic about it all. So dramatic, that I was about to quit writing, realizing I just might be shit at it, and maybe they were right to keep me out of AP English.

Then I read the play Antigone. In it, a young woman dies for the right to bury her brother. I enjoyed Greek plays, particularly Sophocles. And I had read it before. Twice for school. But it hadn’t resounded before the way it did that time. Maybe I wasn’t looking for stories when I first read it. Maybe I was reading for quizzes instead of for learning. Whatever the case, a week later, I went on a mountain climb with friends at night and saw Mars bright in the sky. A little seed had been planted by Antigone, and it started to grow. And grow. And grow. What if I take Greece, put in the stars, add spaceships, add opera, add Romans, add twists, betrayal, and blood galore!?

Two months later, I had Red Rising.

So why the hell does all this personal stuff matter, you’re rightfully thinking. Why include it in my website instead of the brass tacks of my earthly existence?

It matters, to me at least, because I think it’s important to understand why someone writes. If I knew why more authors wrote, I would have been able to see myself in them. I would have known what was possible. Sometimes it’s hard to know what’s possible and you need if not a blueprint, some sense that someone like you has walked the path before, found it just as thick with bramble and fog, yet pressed on and found that it led to their heart’s delight.

You see, I’ve come to view human society as a clumsy colossus of interest groups stitched together by necessity. It trudges along, crushing many things underfoot. Most on accident. Some out of malice. Like any creature, it wants to survive. That’s its prerogative. To do that it needs parts, not people. Gears to make it run. Fuel to feed the engine. Our society, Darrow’s Society—it makes no difference. They are all the same. They need conformity. But we humans have a natural rebellious streak in us. Call it free will.

We don’t very much like being told we’re gears. Often, we’re not told. Society distracts with toys, with bread and circuses, with hyperbole and patriotism, because those at the top benefit most when those in the middle and at the bottom pay attention least.

I felt this in school. My creativity was almost driven out of me. And that’s just school. It’s not poverty. It’s not systematic oppression. It’s not discrimination. It’s just school.

But if something so benign can do that, how unbearably easy it is to have ourselves shaped by others. I want to encourage you to hold fast and shape yourself.

I got lucky with Red Rising. I know that. I’m lucky to have stumbled onto Darrow and Sevro and Ragnar and Mustang. Luckier still to be able to share this world with you. But I think it a disservice to pretend Red Rising came out fully baked, or that I always knew I’d be an author. It didn’t. I didn’t. I almost wasn’t.

Pretending otherwise would encourage you to believe that this was easy. That’s often the image people want to sell—divine inspiration and all that. It’s sexy, sure. But it discourages those who have yet to reach out for their own dream. Who feel they have to compromise.

If I had a nickel for every time I’ve seen people talk themselves out of a great personal endeavor, I’d sell my books for free. Sometimes it’s diving into an art form. Sometimes it’s a move to a different city. Sometimes it’s daring to pass up money for their dream. It doesn’t matter. Fear is planted in them by society or someone they trust. They’re told it’s impractical, so they do nothing. They’re told “Oh, no one makes it in publishing” or “Do you know how hard and long medical school is?” So, they soldier on safe and sound and smaller than they want to be.

My grandfather wasn’t a perfect man. But the vastness of his stories and the childish joy that filled his eyes when he told them convinced me that there was magic in the world. It made me set out to try and find it. To catch it. To bottle it and learn to make it mine. Now I get to write about spaceships in my pajamas.

I hope my books help remind you that there is magic in the world. That we are more than integers of flesh, more than gears in someone else’s machine. We can be as big as we make ourselves to be, and the only smallness in your world resides in the hearts of those who seek to tether you to the ground because they don’t know how to leave it.

That’s all for now. Back to my spaceships I go.

Per aspera ad astra.

About the Author

Pierce Brown is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Red Rising, Golden Son, Morning Star, and Iron Gold. His work has been published in thirty-three languages and thirty-five territories. He spent his childhood building forts and setting traps for cousins in the woods of six states and the deserts of two. Graduating from college in 2010, he fancied the idea of continuing his studies at Hogwarts. Unfortunately, he doesn’t have a magical bone in his body. So while trying to make it as a writer, he worked as a manager of social media at a startup tech company, toiled as a peon on the Disney lot at ABC Studios, did his time as an NBC page, and gave sleep deprivation a new meaning during his stint as an aide on a U.S. Senate campaign. Now he lives in Los Angeles, where he scribbles tales of spaceships, wizards, ghouls, and most things old or bizarre.

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