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Monday, December 3, 2012

Book Review: Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo

Shadow and Bone (The Grisha, #1)Shadow and Bone (The Grisha #1)
by Leigh Bardugo
Release Date: June 5th, 2012
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. LLC
Format: Paperback ARC, 356 pages
ISBN: 978-0-8050-9459-6
Get a Copy:
      Barnes and Nobles

Goodreads Summary: 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.

Cindy's Review: This book is another one of the books I got from Teen Read Week all the way back in October. And today's December 1. Well, I read like 15 of them already so making progress! 

The Cover:
 This was the cover of my book. Since this cover wasn't in any of the Goodreads editions, I decided to post up the real one. Just from the cover, the title, and the teaser, I thought this one of those scary, eerily, dark, nights and werewolves or whatever. I thought this book would be something about dark magic. Even though, yes, there is some involve of magic, okay maybe a lot, it isn't at paranormal and scary as I thought it would be. 

I mean, this turned out to be a really really good book. It kind of reminded me of The Selection by Kiera Cass and Graceling by Kristin Cashore. More details later. 

The Characters:
The book started off with a prologue when Alina Starkov, the main character, and Mal were little kids, both an orphan at a duke's house. Chapter 1 started with Alina and Mal all grown-up, either 16, 17, or 18, I forgot. My memory isn't so good with these things. I guess it's a dystopian genre since people are separated into groups from Mapmakers to Grishas and jobs. When they were little, they get tested to see what jobs they would get when they grow up. Alina became a mapmaker. Mal became a tracker. But deep inside, Alina wasn't supposed to be a tracker. Alina is something special, something way special that she can change the society forever. She is a sun summoner, a Grisha, whom is a group of elite girls led by the Darkling. 

Okay. So you can tell a bit from the beginning that Alina has a crush on Mal. But the word, crush is too mushy for it. So you can say Alina likes Mal. Then the Darkling came in and took Alina away to become a Grisha when Alina's power showed up to save Mal in the Fold. 

Okay. The Darkling sounds hot. But as hot as he is, I still think Mal is better for Alina. And sadly, though, the Darkling actually turned out to be evil. I wanted him to be a good guy. A really, hot, sexy, mysterious, good guy. Only, it's hot, mysterious, bad guy instead. Since the Darkling wanted to go on too far with Alina, ugh, I don't like him now. 

The Plot: 
When Alina, Mal, and the rest of the town members were being attacked by volcras on the Fold. I don't know what volcras are, but they have wings, nails, and screeching sounds, kinda like herpes of Greek mythology or Percy Jackson. ;) Omg. I realized I haven't even finished my sentence. Anyways, when Alina and Mal and all the others were being attacked, Alina saved Mal's life by summoning bright light, that could drive away the volcras. No one has had that ability. And the Darkling is waiting till one day, someone does. And when he finally finds her, the Darkling takes her to the palace where she got to dress in gorgeous, luxurious, Grisha stuff. 

Alina was being trained in many ways to become a Grisha and a Sun Summoner. She was trained to use her powers, which later on, turned out to be very useful. 

Book Comparisons:
I decided to add this new section here because I realized I compare books, A LOT. 

So I said Shadow of Bone kind of reminded me about The Selection by Kiera Cass. I said that because the main character's life was similar. They both came from the poor and was suddenly moved to the palace to live in luxuriant. And they both have a boy/lover that became a guard/tracker (you know, to help the palace) because of her. Except, I only agree with Alina and Mal being together. In The Selection, Prince Maxon is actually a good guy. And he actually is really nice. And he sounds hot. ;)

Shadow and Bone also reminded me about Graceling by Kristin Cashore. I don't know if I spelled her name right. Last time, I spelled her name wrong. The Reason. Everyone in Grisha have their own special skills. And plus, both Grisha and Graceling started with a G.Graceling! Like Katsa! But Shadow and Bone is fantastic in their own way. 

The Ending: 
Well, it kinda ended with Alina running away from the palace, from the Darkling, who trying to use her power to expand his magic. He was going to put a claim on Alina. I can't say Alina made it away successfully, but if you're really interested, you should totally read the book. ;)

The Bad: 
Despite the romance being perfect and everything, a little more romance would be appreciated. ;)

The Good:
Too fab to compliment~ JK. It was GOOD. Trust me. They say good isn't enough to describe something, but if you really meant it, it is. 

And it also went by real fast. I was at 100 pages in just 20 minutes ;D

Rating: (1-10): 9.5
What did I say? It was Good!

Quote Time? Sure. I got a few~ 
"Because everything she cooked taste like mud."
UGH. I love how Mal and Alina are so close when they were young.

"It was always just you and me, Alina."
Awww. Mal <3

"So I'm the Darkling's prisoner?"
In other words, YES.

That's it for now, since I got too absorbed in the book. :)

Happy Reading~


  1. Ah, another great review, Cindy! This book has been getting such a lot of praise! I should read it soon, but since it it full-on fantasy and as you said, little bit of romance (which I don't really mind), I keep pushing it ahead! I guess I better read it sooner or later. :)

    Sarika @ The Readdicts

  2. I'm really excited for this book right now! Great review, I like the book comparisons. Should definitely check it out soon!

    Judith @ Paper Riot

  3. Fantastic review. I have wanted to read this since I first heard about it, but still have not cracked it open. It sounds like I should do so, sooner, rather than later.


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