by Leigh Bardugo
ARC from ALA Midwinter
Book Jacket Summary
Inspired by Tsarist Russia, SHADOW & BONE brings to life a fantasy world of superstition and science, saints and samovars, in which a lonely refugee must leave behind her best friend- and first love- to save her country from the growing darkness of the Unsea. But first she must contend with the dangerous and decadent world of the kingdom’s magical elite and their powerful leader, a creature of dark charm and deadly ambition.
I received this book from the publisher but the review is based on my true opinions of the book.
Now with the disclaimer out of the way I can truly say that I love this book and I will be buying my own copy of this one! It had all the elements I love in a YA Fantasy. The books I have listed in the Book Pairings section are some of my favorite fantasy (one is dystopian but still counts) and this book will also be on that list. It has the tension of Poison Study and the great fantasy world of Green Rider. I love the world that Bardugo created based on Russia but added her own touches.
Alina is a very engaging character that longs for acceptance after being an orphan and a remote person most of her life. Her only consolation is Mal, her childhood friend. They found comfort in each other as children but are slowly drifting apart. When it is discovered that Alina may be the mythical Sun Summoner that could save Ravka from distruction she embraces feeling like she finally belongs with the Grisha. She also embraces the Darkling, the leader of the Grisha but cannot quite forget Mal.
The book left me with this need of the next book and I will be really excited when the next books comes out. This is one for fantasy fans but is so good that it could be used as a gateway book into the genre for those who love paranormal. The characters are riveting and you are not sure what Alina will do or what certain people will do to contain her power.
Poison Study by Maria Snyder
Wither by Lauren DeStefano
Starcrossed by Elizabeth C. Bunce
Green Rider by Kristen Britain