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Publisher's Summary

Honor and betrayal fuel a caste-shattering revolution in the action-packed new novel from the number one New York Times best-selling author of the Red Rising Trilogy.

Ten years after the events of Morning Star, Darrow and the Rising are battling the remaining Gold loyalist forces and are closer than ever to abolishing the color-coded caste system of Society for good. But new foes will emerge from the shadows to threaten the imperfect victory Darrow and his friends have earned. Pierce Brown expands the size and scope of his impressive Red Rising universe with new characters, enemies, and conflicts among the stars.

©2017 Pierce Brown (P)2017 Recorded Books

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Story

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Audio needs to be balanced

Story is okay, not up to the standards of the first 3 books. The narrators are okay except the audio really needs to be more balanced. If I have it loud enough to hear the quiet parts, the loud parts are piercing. This make sections of the book almost unbearable.

35 of 35 people found this review helpful

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Great book, fix the audio :c

the narration, the story is all great but the audio volume is poorly balanced so it's hard to hear unless you're in a really quiet environment. the loud parts are too loud and the quiet parts are too quiet. can't really listen to it on the go.

36 of 37 people found this review helpful

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  • B
  • 01-18-18

Too many cooks in the kitchen

How could the performance have been better?

I understand the appeal of a cast of narrators but a part of me wishes Tim Gerard Reynolds narrated the entire book. He is so intricately entwined with the original trilogy that is startling when you first hear a new narrator early in the book. Honestly, I want a solo version with only Tim....that or switch it up and form a super-group of Tim Gerard Reynolds, Kate Reading, and Michael Kramer...could you imagine?

93 of 100 people found this review helpful

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War Eats the Victors Last

Pierce laid the foundations for an epic in "Red Rising." He built the conflict to a crescendo in "Morning Star." In "Iron Gold," he surrenders everything to the chaos of a post-governmental collapse and the reader must watch as old characters and new try to survive the unforgiving conditions of all-out war.

Pierce continues to hone his craft and it shines in his prose. He is proficient at both maintaining momentum during action sequences and slowing things down for somber reflection. Scenes are charged with emotional energy and the 4 different character perspectives maintain their own unique tones and themes. The narrators are perfectly suited for each perspective. The female narrator, Moloney, especially did a phenomenal job bringing the new red character to life. Her narration was raw and agonized and unrestrained.

This is no story where an uprising is followed by peace. This is a story about how people scoured for faults in the aftermath of Darrow's government upheaval, and how those people exploited the population to stoke longstanding conflicts of color and class. This is a story about how the protagonist may actually be the villain despite the purest of intentions. This is a story about how--in the absence of a lifetime of oppressive authority--classes face civil war as several factions struggle for a position of power in their newfound freedom. This is a story about how war is a bloated, gluttonous monster that does not discriminate between the good guys and the bad.

One of my absolute favorite things to do as a reader is to join an author in the navigation of a highly controversial and deeply human topic. This experience becomes exponentially richer when an author does this with a cast of characters that the reader is already attached to. "Iron Gold" is unforgiving in its honest exploration of humanity's darkest tendencies. The trajectory of the series after the final pages of this book is unclear and Pierce has crafted a reality of limitless potential. I cannot wait to discover what lies in the pages of "Dark Age."

10 of 10 people found this review helpful

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1 narrator please

TGR needs to go back and narrate the entire book. The other narrators completely ruin the experience for me.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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I agree to many Cooks in kitchen..

One of the many reasons that I loved the first three books so much was that Tim Gerard Was absolutely perfect as the narrator. He ability to change back and forth from High lingo to low red. Giving each character its own identity made this book come alive. He did that on his own. The other actors here just ruined it for me. Excellent story as always from Pierce Brown. But as far as the narration goes maybe they should make sure that the actors know how pronounce the names as the author intended. I swear I was going get bloody damned pissed if he called Rouqe “Rock” one more time

34 of 37 people found this review helpful

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Too many narrators Mr. Brown

What made the experience of listening to Iron Gold the most enjoyable?

Tim Gerald Reynolds is a master narrator. Reynolds has already developed the voices for these characters in 3 other books. Adding the other narrators takes away from TGR performance and the Red Rising experience. It does not flow effortlessly like the other books and gets confusing. Missed the mark as far as the audible version is concerned.

16 of 17 people found this review helpful

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A Myriad of Thoughts and Emotions

Note: I have written a lot of book reviews, but I haven't had this many thoughts on one book in a long time, so my review is a bit exhaustive, but I would appreciate it if you would give it a read, because I really do feel like I bring up some important points, thank you.

After the fantastic third and final installment in Pierce Brown's first trilogy, Morning Star, I believe that this was the book I was most excited for this year, and after finishing it I can honestly say that I have been left very confused and a bit disappointed.

Where to start, the four points of view were somewhat off putting, the story really seems to jump ahead from the previous book without enough explanation of what happened in between, and the book as a whole is much slower than the first three novels Brown has written.

I really enjoy novels that use multiple points of view, I actually think it tends to make books more dynamic and complex, and helps develop characters much more effectively. In a sense Brown accomplishes both of these intentions for better or worse. The multiple POVs cause us as the reader to experience essentially four different story lines, which don't connect much throughout the story, making the whole book seem a little disjointed and without a consistent pace. Overall, this splitting of points of view creates a very complex plot, that doesn't flow properly and is very hard for the author to balance effectively. I know this book is technically part of a new trilogy, but in a sense it is still the same overall story line, and splitting the POVs up seems unnecessary to me. The best example of this that I have seen before, that immediately comes to mind for me is definitely the changing from one to three POVs in Anthony Ryan's Raven's Shadow series between books one and two, and that was an unmitigated disaster. Ryan completely lost control of the story, and I really hope this isn't the case for the coming books in this series.

On the other hand, Brown's use of multiple POVs really does help him develop his characters even more than he already does. As I have finished my fourth novel by Brown, I am quickly coming to realize my favorite thing about his books are his well developed characters. Most of the large main cast has a clear feel to them, and as a reader I can clearly understand their motivations and emotions. Now, as a caveat to my previous point, Brown does introduce so many characters in this novel that the development is definitely a bit lacking in some of the fringe people, and a good number of them seem to be there simply for plot advancement purposes.

Now my next issue with this novel is the jump of ten years between the previous trilogy's end and this book's start. I don't have any problems whatsoever with time gaps between books, but too many unexplained events happen in the time to make the change fluid. It is briefly mentioned in the book that there have been ten years of war, but then the book happens to start up when all the major action is happening, and this major action only seems to take a few weeks. You would think that the gap could have easily been made smaller, and it wouldn't have made a difference, ten years just seems like a very arbitrary number to me. I would mention more but I don't want to spoil anything for anyone, lets just say that I think the time gap and ensuing explanations that we were given about that time are hazy at best.

Finally, we move to my last point of discussion, which is the pacing of this book. Because of the introduction of three new character POVs, Brown needs time to build their backstories, and help us understand what is happening in their lives in general. This makes this book start much slower, and not much plot movement happens for essentially the first two thirds of the novel, which is somewhat different from the previous three books. Also, there seems to be much less action in this novel than the previous ones, which is a bit surprising to me, and might be disappointing to others. I don't want to necessarily say that I disliked this pacing change, but it was definitely something I didn't expect, and it did make for a much different read, especially because this novel was a good bit longer than his other works to date.

I want to quickly mention the narration, which I felt was tolerable, but I didn't think there was really a need for the four different narrators. I absolutely love Tim Gerrard Reynolds, and have listened to dozens of his performances before, but I honestly don't think I have ever heard of any of the three narrators before. I wouldn't say they were bad, but they were all fairly average. Quick disclaimer here, I am not picky about narrators, and don't put books down if the narrator is poor, so my opinion on this particular subject should be taken with a grain of salt.

To wrap things up, after finishing this novel, despite having several opinions on different aspects of the book, I came out pretty ambivalent on it as a whole. It wasn't a bad book, I have certainly read worse books, but it didn't hit my expectations either. Ultimately, it is hard to judge this book by itself, because more than most novels it feels like a fragment of an entire story, and I believe the next book will make or break this series. If Brown can control all of his story lines and pull them together into something cohesive, this book will definitely improve in my eyes, if not there might not be that much point in reading book three.

30 of 33 people found this review helpful

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10 years later and nerves are wearing thin

Iron Gold is Pierce Brown's latest installment in the Red Rising universe. The story takes place ten years after the conclusion of the original trilogy. In that time, the rim has been quiet, while Darrow and company have been battling with the gold holdouts on the inner worlds. Darrow is looking for more war resources, while Dancer is leading an effort to broker a peace. Threatened with arrest, Darrow goes rogue in a last ditch effort to destroy the Ashlord. At the same time, Cassius and Lysander get caught up out in the rim which hasn't lost its appetite for vengeance. Finally, a grey turned professional thief and a red girl formerly from the mines of Mars get caught up in a plot to bring down the Republic. Multiple cliffhangers are left unresolved.

The sci-fi elements are consistent with earlier installments with a bit of novelty thrown in such as a supermax prison at the bottom of Earth's oceans and a description o teh Venusian terraforming. Several new characters are introduced, including children of the next generation. Darrow is extremely introspective, constantly questioning his actions, while torn between acting the god-figure and simply being a father and husband. A major theme is the gradual realization by many characters that their daily rationalizations don't work anymore and need readjusting. Brown is meticulous in bringing each character to their own epiphany.

The decision of using four different narrators for the four main characters from whom perspective is offered was brilliant. Each narrator brings a sense of the unique point of view for each. The various accents are handled deftly, while pacing and mood are well aligned with the flow of the story. There's a definite maturation in sophistication and nuance, while increasing the complexity of the psychological aspects of the society as a whole.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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Who the Bloodydamn Chose These Narrotors?

Tim Gerard Reynolds is the most perfect gorydamn narrator for the poetry Pierce Brown writes. I cannot even focus on the story, the other narrative is so obnoxious. AUDIBLE FIX THIS!!!

25 of 28 people found this review helpful

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  • k9
  • 01-24-18

what is going on?

three new narrators who haven't a clue how to read this. was so looking forward to hearing time Gérard Reynolds superb narration as before bring him back to redo this completely. hope he's doing the rest.

10 of 10 people found this review helpful

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  • Jonathan
  • 02-03-18

Should've kept to one narrator.

Good book, but the move to multiple narrators didn't work for me overall. TGR great and Julian Elfer decent (good voice, but delivery a bit flat); John Curless seems an impressive narrator, but sounds far too old for the character he's playing, which I found jarring. However, Aedin Moloney's painfully affected, overwrought performance completely ruined those sections for me.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • Tillytish
  • 02-07-18

Enjoyable - but not as good as his earier works

Where does Iron Gold rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

A good yarn, and engaging. Worth listening to.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Darrow - central character and likeable, flawed character

What three words best describe the narrators’s voice?

There are 4 narrators - all were good - especially Tim Gerad Reynolds who read the first 3 books in the series - except for Julian Elfer, whose voice I found to be too much of a monotone and almost ruined the book for me.

If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

The Reaper ruturns

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • g
  • 01-30-18

Narration?

Thoroughly enjoyed this latest offering by Pierce Brown. Tim Gerard Reynolds is outstanding as always. John Curless, and Aedin Moloney also do an admirable job with Lyria and Ephraim. However Julian Elfers Lysander may be some of the worst narration I've heard in my 5 years with Audible. Rushed, clipped and monotonous.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • G. P. Brown
  • 01-29-18

Worthy sequel to a great sci-fi series!

I'll not say too much about the plot or story of Iron Gold but will say that I felt like it was a worthy sequel to the original Red Rising trilogy and that I felt the 10 year time jump and expanded POV cast did more to enhance the story than damage it. I love Darrow but I warmed to a few of the new characters and felt like they offered a different perspective on things which in turn gave the world a bit more depth to it.

Pierce Brown really is my sort of author. His writing is highly engaging and has a beautifully melancholic and poetic feel to it. His books are always intense and exciting and really drag me through the emotional ringer from start to finish. It is great when you find a book where you find the story super exciting and can emotionally engage with the characters and happenings.

On to the important stuff: Recorded Books decision to bring in three additional narrators!

I had some serious concerns going into Iron Gold when I heard that Recorded Books had decided to limit Tim Gerard Reynolds role in the book by brining in three new narrators to voice the three new POV's. The only positive was that they had retained TGR for the Darrow POV segments. I'm still puzzled by why they thought this was a good idea as TGR is one of the best narrators out there and his performance of the original Red Rising was fantastic. One of the best performances of any audio I've ever heard (and I've listened to hundreds of audios over the years!). The guy was so good he enhanced the quality of an already great story with his ability to convey emotion with his voice and his excellent voice acting.

It goes without saying that TGR's Darrow POV section of Iron Gold were as fantastic as one would expect. His take on Apollonius was stand out good and worthy of praise!

So how did the new narrators get on? They were a bit of a mixed bag.

John Curless - He did the Ephraim POV segments and I thought he was fantastic. Almost as good as TGR with his ability to convey emotions and he really got the tone and humour of the story. If he had a flaw it was that his character voices, while pretty good, were just not quite as good as TGR's. Still, he gets the thumbs up from me and I'll be happy to listen to more books he narrates in the future.

Aedin Moloney - She voiced the Lyria POV segments. I felt like she did an decent job. I took a bit of time to get used to her strong Irish accent and her dramatic style but once I did I warmed to her quickly. She struggled a little with the set voices and accents of the established characters but seemed to get the tone of the story and was also quite good at conveying emotion with her voice.

Julian Elfer - The guy voiced the Lysander bits of the story. I felt like he was the real weak link and the only narrator not up to the job. He was pretty awful. The only good thing he had going for him was that he was well-spoken and his voice was a great fit for an upper class Gold. The problem is that he was a poor voice actor and just read everything in a monotone. He even failed to get the humour which sounded decidedly off and stilted via his poorly timed delivery. He was also not great with the dialogue in general. It was often tough to figure out which characters were speaking!

At least the production by Recorded Books was not awful. To their credit they had the new narrators retain the accents used by TGR in the original RR trilogy. It is a minor thing but really makes a difference as it helps with consistency.

I feel like this would have been better if they had just stuck with TGR as the narrator for the whole book but that the additional narrators did not overly hurt my enjoyment of the audio as two of them were good and only Elfer was not up to the job.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 01-19-18

Yet another great series destroyed by PoV

Think of Blood Song, first book single point of view from an amazingly crafted protagonist, the best book of its genre bar none. The next two were increasingly diabolical, complete change of style & focus to peripheral characters . This audiobook seems worse, since with the peripheral POV, you also lose Tim's amazing narration (who is the best in the business IMHO).

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 02-22-18

Brilliant

Loved the first three books great narration. This one is as good but would have preferred the one narrator. Trouble is the forth book is the first book in the next trilogy and now I have to sit and wait for the next one. I prefer to read them all in a row so hurry.

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  • Bam
  • 02-19-18

A Worthy Sequel Faulted by Narrator Changes

Pierce Brown has done it again; Iron Gold, the first in a new series following the story from the Red Rising trilogy, doesn't miss a beat.

adding depth & expansion to an already huge universe; Iron Gold expands the POV characters from 1 in the first series (Darrow) to 4.

As an Audiobook series, the initial trilogy was flawless. Tim Gerard Reynolds captures every character, every emotion and every tense moment, making the series come alive.

The decision to bring in new narrators for the new POV characters might seem natural enough, but none manage to keep pace with Reynolds.

Though I will say; props to John Curless & Aedin Moloney. While I preferred Reynolds' chapters & narration, these 2 really got into their character roles. Curless really sounds like a bitter, war weary soul who has lost too much to care anymore. Moloney stays true to the Red roots & style of narration Reynolds brought in the first series; a long suffering but strong willed people.

Only Julian Elfer really bring the book down. He voices some huge personalities & important characters for the ongoing story. Yet his narration is rushed, lacking emotion & difficult to digest.

Personally - I'd have preferred Reynolds to narrate the book solo. However, I won't be sad to see Curless & Moloney return for the sequel.

Elfer, however, needs to either be replaced altogether or understand the gravity of the characters & story he's narrating. His voice is perfect for Gold, but that's the only really positive thing I can say about it.

Overall - Iron Gold is another success by Pierce Brown. He's fast becoming a favourite story teller of mine.

if you enjoyed Red Rising, you'll enjoy this.

Give the new narrators a chance to grow on you and I suspect you'll end up enjoying them (most of them,anyway).

Can't wait for Dark Age now!

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  • Garreth
  • 02-15-18

great book ruined by new approach.

Would have much preferred TGR to narrate the whole book. also, quality issues in the actual audio, whereby it would be extremely soft at points. Very poor quality from RecordedBooks

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  • Paul Pilling
  • 02-05-18

Brilliant story brilliantly performed

Waited along time for this book and it certainly didn't disappoint. Well done Pierce Brown

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  • Lord Vader
  • 02-12-18

Narrator when from good to aweful

Don't bother with this book if you enjoy the narrator. They have ruined it with multiple bad narrators.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • MR R S BROOKES
  • 02-10-18

Still got it

Awesome series. space opera the way you imagine star wars in your head but better than it actually is.

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  • peastri
  • 01-21-18

Must read!

Bloodydamn brilliant yet again. Highly recommended. Thankfully we won't have to wait long for the Dark Age!