The thought filled me with grief, grief for the dreams we'd shared, for the love I'd felt, for the hopeful girl I would never be again.
Title: Shadow and Bone
Author: Leigh Bardugo
Series: The Grisha Trilogy, #1
Publisher: Henry Holt and Company
Date Published: June 5, 2012
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.
Shadow and Bone is truly an extraordinary book. Actually, the entirety of the Grishaverse books are extraordinary. As I am writing this review, I am struggling to find the proper words to explain how phenomenal Shadow and Bone is. Well, all I can do is explain it to the best of my ability. So, without further ado, let’s get into my Shadow and Bone review!
The first thing that I absolutely have to mention is the amazing world-building. The world of Ravka and the Grisha was so well thought out. The first aspect of the world is the Fold. The Fold is a section of darkness and creatures in Ravka. I have no idea how Leigh Barudo was able to come up with a creation like the Fold but I am so glad she did. It was one of the main problems throughout the series and it made Shadow and Bone ten times better.
The next aspect of the world-building is the Grisha. The Grisha are divided up into three types and more subtypes. We have the Corporalki which are made up of the Healers and Heartrenders. Then we have the Etherealki which consists of the Inferni, the Squallers, and the Summoners. Finally, we have the Materialki which are made up of the Durasts and the Alkemi. The Grisha is what really drew me in with this world. The idea of them is so unique and well executed. I did read the Six of Crows series first and when I did, I desperately wanted to know more about the Grisha. And I definitely got my wish.
In Shadow and Bone, something I really found interesting was Alina struggling with her newfound power. I think that was something that really made this book interesting because it made her human.
The last thing that I want to mention are the characters. First, of course, we have Alina. I found her easy to relate to and easy to like. Then we have Mal. Honestly, it took me a while to warm up to him. But once I did, I was definitely rooting for him. Next we have the Darkling. He was one of the most intriguing things about Shadow and Bone because we didn’t really know much about him. Then we have the rest of the characters (Genya, Nadia, Marie, David, etc.) all of which have amazing backstories.
Overall, Shadow and Bone is an amazing book with something for everyone. If you haven’t already, I highly recommend reading it!
Buy Shadow and Bone:
by L.J. Smith
Goodreads 2018: 36/100