Hope And Red is a book I went into not really knowing that much about it aside from what it said on the blurb. I think I heard someone mention it on booktube and that is how I ended up picking it up.
I am however really happy that I did decide to pick it up because it ended up being two things I wasn’t expecting; a) the book that helped me out of my book slump and b) a really enjoyable read that had me worried, excited and happy for the characters and trying to read faster than my eyes could move to see what happened next.
Hope And Red is fittingly enough about two characters named Hope and Red specifically. Hope is an orphan after she becomes the sole survivor when biomancers massacre her village. She ends up in what is essentially a monastery for warrior munks, called Vinchen and is secretly trained in their arts.
Red meanwhile is also an orphan and finds himself being taken under the wing of a woman who ends up taking him out to sea where he becomes part of a pirate ship. Eventually they return to New Laven, a city where nothing really changes, and he becomes part of a crew and is trained as a thief and con-man.
The two of them end up meeting after Hope’s quest for vengeance sends her on a path of adventure that eventually gets her into New Laven where she and Red cross paths and it really doesn’t take long before the two of them get into trouble.
Out of everything in this book, the characters are my absolute favorite and I love every single one of them. Our leads are especially great and you get to see a very distant, quiet and cold Hope slowly change and alter as she meets new people who help shape and change her perspective on life. Red meanwhile ends up on a path where he goes from having few cares, to having quite a few and caring quite deeply about them.
The relationship between Hope and Red in the beginning is pretty funny as Red is more taken with Hope than she is with him, but it’s wonderful to see how things slowly change between them and they both become very important people to each other.
I love Red for his humor and his wits and I love Hope for her courage and her amazing skills as a warrior and I love them both together for the way they fulfill each other while never asking the other to change and supporting one another as they need to.
The other characters in this book are also really great. We have Nettles who for a time is Red’s girlfriend of a sort, but they remain friends and she’s pretty amazing all around, especially with a whip.
The entire crew that Red hangs with is also really great and I spent the entire book hoping every single one would be okay on the next page.
Still, the very slow burn between Red and Hope is quite possibly my favorite thing and I can’t wait to read the next book to see what is going to happen to them now that they’ve both made some choices that is going to make life anything but easy for them.
The plot of Hope And Red was really well executed and the way things come together at the end lay the groundwork for a lot of interesting things to happen in book two.
There’s quite a bit of travelling in this book, especially on Hope’s end and I enjoyed seeing how different the North was from the South and how the villages felt different from the larger cities.
All in all a very good start to a new series and one I really recommend!