Hello, my darling readers!
This month will be a little special. At the beginning of the year, I discovered the works of Sarah J. Maas. As I enjoyed her books tremendously, I decided to give another queen of the YA genre a shot: Leigh Bardugo. I had heard nothing but good things about her novels, so this month I’ll be reviewing her Grishaverse books!
Shadow and Bone revolves around the teenage orphan Alina Starkov. She’s a soldier in the Ravkan army but her life is about to change forever when her regiment is attacked in the shadow fold, a stretch of land covered by unpenetrable darkness and haunted by monstrous creatures…
I was a little scared that this would be just another blueprint YA heroine story. One more glorified Hunger Games/Divergent version.
Luckily, that was not the case!
While some elements of Shadow and Bone might resemble out typical YA book, the vibe was rather different.
First of all, the setting is quite unique. You can tell that Ravka, the way the country looks, the language that is spoken, the habits people have are inspired by Russia. That alone creates for an atmosphere and a setting so different from the other YA books I’ve read so far, that I was at ease after the first chapter.
Bardugo also tackles an interesting concept with the Shadow and Bone books. The story revolves around faith, its connection with power and where you draw the line between science and miracle.
The Grisha in her books have extraordinary powers but are still human. However, some aspire to greater things and stop at nothing to get what they want.
While there is still a love story to be found in the books – I really wish YA writers could produce one damn novel without that – it takes a place in the backseat. I am so glad about that!
The story is fascinating and you’ll encounter plot twist and turns along the way that you didn’t see coming. Or some that you saw coming but hoped weren’t true. In any way, Shadow and Bone is thrilling. Bardugo’s book mixes magic and mystery with elements that feel all too real, thus making for a captivating story.
I won’t go into detail with the characters now, I need something to talk about in the next reviews 😉
Shadow and Bone was much better than I had expected and easily set itself apart from other YA books. Leigh Bardugo created something fascinating and unique. Can’t wait to read more!
Did you read the Grishaverse Books? Let me know in the comments what you think!