30 June 2012

Review: Shadow and Bone

Title: Shadow and Bone
Author: Leigh Bardugo
Series: The Grisha Trilogy #1
Publisher: Henry Holt & Co.
Find it here: Amazon, Goodreads
Source: Purchased

Surrounded by enemies, the once-great nation of Ravka has been torn in two by the Shadow Fold, a swath of near impenetrable darkness crawling with monsters who feast on human flesh. Now its fate may rest on the shoulders of one lonely refugee.

Alina Starkov has never been good at anything. But when her regiment is attacked on the Fold and her best friend is brutally injured, Alina reveals a dormant power that saves his life—a power that could be the key to setting her war-ravaged country free. Wrenched from everything she knows, Alina is whisked away to the royal court to be trained as a member of the Grisha, the magical elite led by the mysterious Darkling.

Yet nothing in this lavish world is what it seems. With darkness looming and an entire kingdom depending on her untamed power, Alina will have to confront the secrets of the Grisha…and the secrets of her heart.

My thoughts: 

I pre-ordered this book because of the amazing early reviews that it was receiving and I don’t do that very often, especially for a debut author. I went into this book knowing it was going to be awesome and unique, read it in about a few hours and finished it knowing that it had exceeded my high expectations. I loved this book and I would recommend it to anyone who loves to read fantasy!

There’s a map in this book! Whenever there are maps, I try to get a good feel for where cities and countries are so that I don’t have to flip back and forth but I always end up flipping back and forth! Which it didn’t mind at all because I wanted to know everything about this world that Bardugo created!

Alina is such a great heroine and an awesome well-rounded character! She’s strong, grounded, loyal, she knows who she is and when the story beings, she has accepted her lot in life. She fights in the King’s army and she knows she’ll probably die doing it. But her whole world changes when her undiscovered magical talent is revealed during a near fatal attack. This is when Alina struggles to put her trust in those around her because she doesn’t feel like she really belongs.

The Darkling is also one of my favorite characters! I was drawn to him from the beginning (maybe for the sheer fact that he’s called The Darkling) and I rooted for him throughout the story! Even after finishing it I still hope that he’s going to turn out to be good and that he isn’t evil! I also loved him because he was always encouraging Alina and supporting her when most of the Grisha snubbed their noses at her. He knew she was going to be great even when she was having trouble summoning her powers.

I was able to attend a book signing and an author panel in which Leigh Bardugo was a part of. I just love listening to authors talk about how they create their worlds and invent their characters. Bardugo mentioned that she wanted take the intangible concept of darkness in a country or nation and put it into reality. Ravka is literally divided by an impenetrable darkness which is filled with terrify monsters. I think that hearing tidbits from authors gives me a better understanding of the book and a greater appreciation!

Shadow and Bone is such a great book that sucked me in during the first chapter, making it impossible to put down! I give Shadow and Bone 5 hearts for being one of the best fantasy novels I’ve ever read!


Aneeqah said...

I've heard such fabulous things about this book, so I'm really glad that this didn't disappoint for you! It sounds absolutely wonderful. I'm totally jealous that you got to meet the author!! I heard she was absolutely fabulous.

Great review, Crystal!

-Aneeqah @ My Not So Real Life

TeresaMaryRose said...

I absolutely loved this book as well.I love books with maps as well. When I started the book the first thing I said was "O a map, that must mean the book is good" haha.

Great review.

Teresa @ Readers Live A Thousand Lives

Molli @ Once Upon a Prologue said...

*squees* GREAT review, Crystal! I'm firmly in the Mal/Alina camp, but I cannot deny you that the Darkling has some mad appeal going on, as well as great chemistry with Alina. He was part of why I loved S&B so much, plus things weren't what they seemed, and I adored the whole Grisha customers/society!

Gina @ My Precious said...

This was one of my favorite 2012 debuts. I'm glad you enjoyed it as much as I did. How cool to attend a book signing - I'm jealous.

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