Thursday, June 16, 2016

Review: Riders

Riders (Riders, #1)Author: Veronica Rossi
Series: Riders, #1
Released: February 16th 2016
Publisher: Tor Teen
Length: 384 pages
Source: Publisher for review
Buy: Amazon

Nothing but death can keep eighteen-year-old Gideon Blake from achieving his goal of becoming a U.S. Army Ranger. As it turns out, it does.
While recovering from the accident that most definitely killed him, Gideon finds himself with strange new powers and a bizarre cuff he can’t remove. His death has brought to life his real destiny. He has become War, one of the legendary four horsemen of the apocalypse.
Over the coming weeks, he and the other horsemen—Conquest, Famine, and Death—are brought together by a beautiful but frustratingly secretive girl to help save humanity from an ancient evil on the emergence.
They fail.
Now—bound, bloodied, and drugged—Gideon is interrogated by the authorities about his role in a battle that has become an international incident. If he stands any chance of saving his friends and the girl he’s fallen for—not to mention all of humankind—he needs to convince the skeptical government officials the world is in imminent danger.
But will anyone believe him? 

After her extremely successful Under the Never Sky trilogy, Veronica Rossi’s sophomore project is finally here, and I dare say it’s slightly different from what her readers expected. Told from a male point of view, Riders is based on the New Testament story about the Four Horseman of the Apocalypse. In her story, Conquest, War, Famine and Death are reincarnated (or rather embodied) as four teenage boys, all of whom had to die in order to become what they are.
Our narrator is one of the Four Horsemen, War. Gideon tells his story retrospectively, to an interrogator in an unknown government facility. He is there after being arrested for a crime that has yet to be revealed and he begins his story with the moment of his untimely death. With Gideon narrating his story in such an odd way, some of the urgency is gone and we’re left merely trying to catch up. The pacing is rapid, but we already more or less know how things end, which takes away at least some of our tension.

Rossi was always very good with details, which is true in this book as well. Although we don’t get nearly enough information about Gideon (War) himself and the extent of his powers, the horsemen and their horses were very interesting to read about. There is so much potential here, endless possibilities for weapons, abilities and weaknesses. We’ll hopefully learn more in the upcoming sequel.

In an effort to make Gideon’s love interest Daryn appear more mysterious, Rossi made her compassionless and inaccessible. From the start, Gideon’s insta-attraction seemed superficial and made very little sense. The more he was deceived and outright lied to, the more he admired Daryn and claimed he understood her. That type of romance is fairly difficult to like, but it might turn into something more substantial in the next book, which will be told from Daryn’s perspective.

The next book, Seeker, will be told from Daryn’s perspective. I obviously didn’t much care for her in this book, but I trust Rossi to skillfully turn that around.

A copy of this book was kindly provided by the publisher for review purposes. No considerations, monetary or otherwise, have influenced the opinions expressed in this review.


  1. Oh, I hope this series turns around. I don't know if I can be as forgiving as you, Maja. But I'll stay off this series for now.

  2. I'm bummed to hear about Daryn, I loved all the romance and friendships in the Under the Never Sky trilogy, so I was hoping we'd get something equally well-executed in this story. Like you said though, it might develop into something special in future books. Looking forward to seeing how this series progresses Maja!

  3. Hmm, well maybe I'll catch up and read her other series before I decide whether I'll be reading this one. It sounds like a cool idea but the love at first sight just has to go!

  4. This has been a decisive book. I was so eager in ordering this one for my library but now I'm a bit hesitant in picking it up. I think I'll wait to how book 2 fairs.

  5. Mmm, I have yet to read this one, although I enjoyed the author's previous series - the synopsis here just doesn't quite appeal to me! It does sound like a departure from Rossi's work, and it'll be interesting to see where she takes the series.


Thank you for stopping by and commenting. If you're a fellow blogger, I'll visit and return the favor as soon as possible. If your're using Google+ to comment, please make sure that your blog link is clearly visible on your profile.

Unfortunately, this is now an award and tag free blog, but I do thank you for your consideration.