Title – ‘Shadow and Bone’
Author – Leigh Bardugo
Published – July 31st 2014 by Indigo
Pages – 308
Format – Paperback
Book Summary –
‘The Shadow Fold, a swathe of impenetrable darkness, crawling with monsters that feast on human flesh, is slowly destroying the once-great nation of Ravka.
Alina, a pale, lonely orphan, discovers a unique power that thrusts her into the lavish world of the kingdom’s magical elite – the Grisha. Could she be the key to unravelling the dark fabric of the Shadow Fold and setting Ravka free?
The Darkling, a creature of seductive charm and terrifying power, leader of the Grisha. If Alina is to fulfil her destiny, she must discover how to unlock her gift and face up to her dangerous attraction to him.
But what of Mal, Alina’s childhood best friend? As Alina contemplates her dazzling new future, why can’t she ever quite forget him?’
*Warning – Contains spoilers*
Not going to lie, I was slightly confused throughout the first couple of chapters. This book has some complex elements which you essentially get thrown straight at you rather quickly without much time to adjust. Having said that once you get the general gist of things it becomes an easier read.
Alina was an interesting character, I did highly enjoy the way she was written and how her character developed throughout the book however I’ve got to be honest in saying she wasn’t the stand out character for me personally. The Darkling was my favourite character, I think I simply having a thing for those characters who have a darker aura. Although whilst part of me knew he was going to become the villain of the book the other part was wishing this wasn’t to be the case. It’s something about those dark characters!! He was massively charming and seductive and somehow I was able to sculpt a perfect image in my head of what he could look like… and I imagine that’s what the author was hoping to achieve. For not just Alina to fall under his spell but for the reader as well.
Genya was also another character that stood out massively for me. She was snarky and held her head high despite what others thought of her, that was a highly admirable trait of her’s. The developing friendship between her and Alina throughout the story was sweet to see, it was pleasant to see that Alina had some kind of comfort in a land she was taking time adjusting too. I hope Genya plays a part in the next books and I hope those parts are both prominent and positive, I would hate for her character to not appear in the other books.
In terms of the storyline, it was interesting and had complex elements but some bits of it where predictable. Mal and Alina ending up together was one of those elements, much like the Darkling coming out as the ‘villain’ of the book. Although I use the term villain loosely because whilst his methods are massively questionable I think he isn’t completely consumed by darkness… hopefully. I do look forward to seeing how this series progresses though because I would like to think the next book will be rather action packed and possible answer some of the questions I felt should have been more addressed in this book. I personally would have liked to see a bit more of explanation into Mal and Alina’s past and possibly more suggestions of the Darkling’s past. That was one of the only downsides for me, I felt some details where skipped over slightly, although part of me does believe they may be addressed in the later books which I very much hope is true.
To sum up this book, I really enjoyed it. Once I fully got the grip of the terminology that made it far easier to navigate the book. So to anyone thinking of reading this book, take your time and don’t be surprised if some elements seem a little confusing. It’s the kind of book that does take some concentration and thinking to truly understand. I am definitely interested in how the characters and story line develops in the next book, which I will most certainly be purchasing!
Would I suggest this book to other bookworms? If you can navigate some complex terminology then.. yes!
Will I be reading the next two books in the series? I want to see the Darkling again!
Am I completely in love with this book? Not quite in love.. but I like it for sure!
[I rate this book 3.5/5 stars]