Golden Son takes place a few years after Red Rising, and Darrow has matured some more. He is at the end of his training, winning his last battle and then his life starts to unravel. The matriarch of the Bellona family holds a grudge like none other and she intends to have her revenge–she literally wants his heart on a platter.
Darrow has his first major set back and he doesn’t really know how to recover from it. On top of that his sponsor, Augustus, isn’t very forgiving of those who let him down. One of Darrow’s faults is his lack of politicking skills. This is a serious shortcoming when dealing with a race brought up on extreme Machiavellian tendencies. And Darrow often registers a back stabbing threat after the knife has plunged home.
What saves our hero