Bone and Shadow by Leigh Bardugo
Last year I grabbed a book on sale called The Ninth House. And it sounded generic but then I read it ad was blown away. The characters were intriguing and tragic and it had a dark story line that was downright horrific at times. Immediately this author became one to watch for me. And then I got a hold of one of her young adult books and thought I would give it a try. So here is my review of Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo.
So what is it about? It follows teenage orphans in the fantasy land of Ravka. Alina lives a mundane life as a map maker who loves Mal but can’t bring up the courage to tell him. But they must go to new camp one day, which means they must cross the fold. The fold is this big blotch of darkness stretching across the land and its full of monsters. As they cross it, they are attacked and she tries to save Mal. As things get worse and worse, she explodes into a cloud of light. She passes out and when she comes to she is declared as the sun summoner to rid the world of the darkness and is taken away to the palace to train to save the world. And though the place feels like heaven at times, it is not as good as it all seems.
So what is good and bad? Let’s start with the bad. This book in the most young adult novel released out into the world. There’s the chosen one, the love triangles, the school for witches, the ugly duckling who is beautiful and so on. Everything about this story is has been seen before. You know Mal and Aline will get together. The moment the bad guy walks into the room, you know he’s the bad guy. If you’ve read any Young Adult novel or watched the CW, you know every twist and turn a mile before it happens. In the Young Adult genre, this is like a copy of a copy, or a copy. It feels like a generic imitation of a knock off. There is nothing new or original here. Also almost nothing happens in this story until the end and the book focuses on teen drama mostly throughout.
The good? The love between Alina and Mal is well done. The moments where they are together are great. It felt so genuine. And I really enjoyed the part when they reunited. Also, the world in the darkness is little unique, where ships sail on the sand in a dark smoky fog.
Overall, this the mot generic Young Adult novel in existence but at the same time it’s well written. I can clearly see how this is the same author who wrote the horror novel I love. But at the end of the day, the book is fine. It generic but it’s a good fluff read to take you mind off of a stressful day, or week, or month. And in this pandemic fluff read is what some people need right now. Its not bad by an means, just okay. Check it out if it sounds like your thing.
3 smoothies out of Five.
Overall Rating: The Most Generic Young Adult Novel in Existence