Hot on the heels of the slithering debut of the cover of Pierce Brown’s 5th Red Rising book, Dark Age, is the official description for the sequel to Iron Gold. What’s coming for Darrow & Company in the next book? Let’s just say, it sounds like shit is seriously escalating here… This description comes direct from Penguin Random House (where you can pre-order Dark Age):
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 hope 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, the children of Darrow and Mustang must trust in 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.
Frack me, this is a lot to unpack.
Let’s talk about Darrow. We know all about his rogue war after Iron Gold, but what does this mean…
“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?”
Who’s this other legend? Could it be Lysander, whose portion of the description directly follows Darrow’s? He could certainly land in the Core with a bang, one way or the other.
Or could it be someone else?
I’m still convinced that Silenius au Lune’s stolen razor will come into play somehow in Dark Age or the book that follows. Perhaps the intended owner of that razor is the “another legend” teased in the description, whether that’s Lysander or someone else.
Moving on to Lysander, the description is careful not to strongly imply which way he’s going to fall when he gets to the Core. He’ll either unite OR overcome the treacherous Gold families, which suggests he’ll need to make a choice as to how exactly he defines peace. But the mention of him facing down Darrow sounds pretty ominous. I could almost see those two going head to head at first, perhaps deciding to be enemies almost right away. But I can also see (or really hope to see) them eventually finding common ground, if not in Dark Age then in the book that follows. (Or maybe I just really don’t want them to hate each other.)
There isn’t a ton to go on from some of the other teases in the description. Last we saw Lyria, she was being taken captive by Victra’s people, so that’s presumably who’s holding her for treason. But who are the unlikely new allies?
As for Darrow and Sevro’s kids, we know Pax and Electra were last seen in the care of Ephraim, and that their situation was looking pretty grim. Ephraim needs medical attention, and all three of them are being pursued by the mysterious Queen. So we’ll have to wait and see what’s next for their adventure.
And then there’s Mustang. I saved her for last because she’s the mentioned character with her own portion of the description who wasn’t a POV in Iron Gold. And after reading this description, I’m kind of hoping that Pierce is going to tell us he’s adding Mustang’s point of view to Dark Age. Given her portion of the description, which sounds like a lot of fun, and given that we’re expecting the previous four POVs to return for Dark Age, Mustang’s attempts to outwit her criminal and political enemies will either need to occur in the presence of one of the known POVs (Darrow, Lysander, Lyria or Ephraim), or we’ll have to hear about them through word of mouth to one of the POVs. Either of those scenarios is possible, but I’d much rather have the chance to follow Mustang around and hear her calculating thoughts straight from the horse’s brain.
Dark Age is expected to arrive September 11, 2018.