Review: Shadow and Bone

Shadow and Bone
by Leigh Bardugo
Series: The Grisha #1
Release Date: June 5, 2012
by Henry Holt and Co.

Purchase / 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.

*I won a copy from Mackenzie @ Oh, For The Love of Books!*

This book and I kind of have a love/hate relationship. Some aspects of this book, like the action, I loved, but other aspects of the book, like the story line, I hated. But, overall, the good outweighed the bad.

This book has everything: action, romance, and magic. But there were a few kind of iffy things. The first was the story line/writing. I say that because it wasn't really either of them, but somewhere in the middle. To sum it up, the events were too sudden. There wasn't any build. I think what Bardugo was trying to do was make the book fast paced, but what she ended up achieving was a disconnected story line. She would be talking about spring, and then in the next paragraph, it would be winter, and it’s kind of hard to keep track of as a reader. Also, I kind of wished the book was longer. The characters didn't really get to develop, and not much happened. But, I guess that’s what a second book is for, right?
But, other than that, this book was awesome. I loved how Bardugo went right into it, didn’t mess around, and that there was action from page one. There were some unexpected twists and turns that had me literally gaping at the book. And the ending was superb as well! Action, action, action.

In this book, there were three main characters, the Darkling, Alina, and Mal, but I’m only going to discuss the last two, because if I discuss the Darkling I will most likely give away spoilers. And anyway, if you’ve read this book, you know what I’m talking about :P
A novel with action and magic always needs a great female main character, and Alina fits that description perfectly. She was smart, kick-ass, and a great female protagonist.
I also really liked Mal. In the beginning I thought he was kind of a jerk, but I quickly learned to love him. Go Mal!!

For a debut, this book was good. I kind of compare this book the Study series, by Maria V. Snyder. But I really shouldn’t do that, because I doubt any book, or series, will be as good as those, but, considering, this book was pretty good.



  1. I have seen so many rave reviews of this one, I haven't read it yet thought because I always get hesitant when there is so much hype and I always expect too much so, sometime soon I will read it. Great review, disappointed that it didn't have enough build in your opinion but, hopefully I will enjoy it!

    Kristin @ Young Adult Book Haven

  2. I've been wanting to read this for ages! I'm not even kidding....I heard of it about 6 months ago and I've wanted to read it ever since I first read the description!


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