Monday, July 2, 2012

Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo

Title: Shadow and Bone
Author: Leigh Bardugo
Publisher: Henry Holt
Publication Date: June 5, 2012
Source: Thanks Netgalley and Henry Holt
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Summary: 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.

Review: Shadow and Bone was not what I expected. I didn't expect a fantasy that would absolutely blow my mind with its characters, setting, or writing. Shadow and Bone is just plain wonderful.

Alina starts as a mapmaker and not even a very good one. But she won my heart over immediately. It was impossible for me to not become attached to Alina. I loved seeing her comfortable with her new powers and being, well, powerful and awesome with them. Alina is still the same girl she was at the beginning of the book but she was a lot stronger. And I think anyone can admire her for that.

But what to think of the Darling or childhood friend Mal? (Don't worry this isn't really a love triangle in truth.) The Darkling was just as promised. He's mysterious, a bit mean and dark. (Now there's a dark reference to the Darkling!) Let's just say it was very easy for me to be captured by his spell. Mal is just the opposite. And frankly he's a lot easier to care about. I might be a tad bit in love with Mal.

I'm always telling myself that fantasy really isn't my thing. But Shadow and Bone proves that it kind of is. The world is so vivid and just so fantastically described. I'd almost want to go live there if it wasn't so dangerous!

Shadow and Bone is truly something special. To me it was more then just a fantasy; it was so much more. I absolutely loved it. 



Lark Andrea said...

Thanks for your review. I keep hearing great things about this one, but then not picking it up because I'm not a fantasy fan. I'm convinced to give it another look since you also didn't think you'd enjoy it due to genre, but ended up loving it.

Lisa said...

I've heard such good things about this book. I wasn't sure if I'd like it because I'm not a huge fantasy fan. I'm glad to hear you liked it because most of the time we have similar tastes.

Annette said...

I always say the same thing about fantasy, but I loved this one too! I'm going to have to change my attitude! Great review.

Mary @ BookSwarm said...

I'm right there with you! I truly didn't expect what the book turned into. It was gorgeous.

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