Friday, 8 June 2012
Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo
From Goodreads : 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.
My Rating : 5 of 5 stars
My Thoughts : “They are orphans again, with no true home but each other and whatever life they can make together on the other side of the sea.”
Setting in a magical land called Ravka where shadow fold, a swathe of impenetrable darkness has torn the country into two, crawling with gruesome flesh eating monsters called Volcra. The story circled around protagonist Alina, who used to consider herself a normal girl until a terrible attack by Volcra, nearly killed her best friend Mal, and she somehow saved him with very powerful magic. Discovering she possess a very rare and unique power of summoning the sun , Alina was thrust into the lavish world of Grisha, kingdom’s magical elite and soon catches eyes of Darkiling, the powerful leader of Grisha. Convinced she can help him to unravel the darkness of shadow fold and save Ravka, Alina found herself drawn to Darkling, also a part of heart still loves Mal.
A world that is enthralling
Enriched with high imagination and unbelievable fantasy, Shadow and Bone is completely spellbinding and mesmerizing. The novel is a moving example of creative literature and work of pure inventiveness. Shadow and Bone showcases author’s gorgeous prose and brilliant story telling that will keep the readers engrossed into pages.
The world building was powerful and fascinating, every scenario were richly detailed, played in my head like a live motion picture and I found myself experiencing the glamorous world of Grisha, also being frightened of the Volcra. I must say Shadow and Bone is a masterpiece of work, a sensational addition into YA novels.
Characters those are extraordinary
Alina, a very ordinary girl with an extraordinary ability of summoning the sun, the one who can actually free Ravka from the fabric of darkness. She is a character who actually develops through the pages; adapts the situations and changes with it.
“This was his soul made flesh, the truth of him laid bare in the blazing sun, shorn of mystery and shadow. This was the truth behind the handsome face and the miraculous powers, the truth that was the dead and empty space between the stars, a wasteland peopled by frightened monsters.”
Described as ‘creature of seductive charm and terrifying power’ Darkling is disturbingly provocative, a kind of person you will feel forbidden attraction. Shinning with power and unearthly beauty, nameless and secretive, I can only compare him with danger of darkness.
On the other side, presence of Mal is like assurance of comfort from worry, a relief from endless suffering and agony. Mal is the person you want to fall in love with again and again, someone who can even walk to death for the person he loves.
A love that is heat rendering
“I missed you every hour. And you know what the worst part was? It caught me completely by surprise. I'd catch myself just walking around to find you, not for any reason , just out of habit, because I'd seen something that I wanted to tell you about or because I wanted to hear your voice. And then I'd realize that you weren't there anymore, and every time, every single time, it was like having the wind knocked out of me. I've risked my life for you. I've walked half the length of Ravka for you, and I'd do it again and again and again just to be with you, just to starve with you and freeze with you and hear you complain about hard cheese every day. So don't tell me why we don't belong together,"
Deep emotions of a friendship turned romance were perfectly waved through the story. I felt deep connection with the characters, enduring their Joy of love and pain of loss. When Alina encountered Darkling, she felt a certain attraction to him where her heart still belongs to Mal. The readers can find a subtle hint of a love triangle, but I won’t spoil the excitement, you have to find out the rest by yourself to see if there is one. The plot is dark and detailed, complementing the romantic elements with lies and deceptions.
A novel worth reading
With lots of turns and twists, ups and downs, a breathtaking climax that will make you heart jump to your throat, you will even shiver thinking of it. A splendid plot that is intricate and adventurous, the book held me captivating. I can guaranty that you will not be disappointed by Shadow and Bone. The world of Shadow and Bone is remarkable, worthy of living your dreams in this alluring world of Grisha and experiencing it.
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