Tuesday, May 29

Shadow and Bone: Book Review

Shadow and Bone
Leigh Bardugo
Henry Holt and Co.
June 5th 2012
Young Adult | Fantasy

Official Blurb -
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.

Book Trailer: (This is the best trailer I have seen yet and it fits the book.)

This book rocks from the beginning to end. There is a flavor of all that is good and wholesome about childhood cleverly mixed among the stark reality and darker side of man.

The life force of this book is definitely the amazing mix of emotions. Insecurity,  the need to belong, a desire to be adored, a need to be important, longing for love, danger of settling for less, jealousy, belonging, and belief in oneself are just a few of the emotions that provide fuel for the narrative. Leigh Bardugo is certainly adept at crafting a story and characters. Before the first chapter is finished two orphans will take possession of your heart. From that start springs an amazing journey and moments of precious remembrance and connection.

Alina Starkov is a mousy, easily overlooked, girl of indifferent talent. Malyen Oretsev, Mal, is the star in any setting. Yet these two have a friendship that has endured many a day and change. They truly have a friendship to aspire toward. When Alina saves his life and is whisked off to a whole new life and they are ripped apart, that very friendship is stretched to a breaking point. Alina is thrown into a world full of sharks and unseen dangers and without the security of Mal, she gets in deep. Bit by bit she falls to the seductive call of powers stronger than she is. But like calls to like and just when all seems lost rescue comes in many forms. 

The story is full of moments so beautiful in their simplicity they leave a smile on your face. A shared fit of laughter after an adrenaline filled scare. Honesty in matters of the heart that destroy all misconceptions and cleave two hearts. Understanding and forgiveness instead of bitterness and separation.

Shadow and Bone kept me up well into the night and didn't disappoint. I don't think my mind will easily move on from this story. It is going to be a long wait for the next two books. But this is certainly a wait I wouldn't miss and a book I don't regret reading. Trust me you don't want to miss out on this. In a word, exquisite!

Sexual: Mild
Violence: Moderate

Moment Divine:
"I don't have ti--"
"Make time!" I snapped. "I've covered almost two hundred miles on horse back. I haven't had a good night's sleep in a week, and I've nearly been killed twice. So before I do anything else, you're going to have to tell me who you are and why it's so very important that you get my clothes off."