Shards and Ashes
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Shards and Ashes

3.59 of 5 stars 3.59  ·  rating details  ·  1,727 ratings  ·  347 reviews
Gripping original stories of dystopian worlds from nine New York Times bestselling authors, edited by Melissa Marr and Kelley Armstrong

The world is gone, destroyed by human, ecological, or supernatural causes. Survivors dodge chemical warfare and cruel gods; they travel the reaches of space and inhabit underground caverns. Their enemies are disease, corrupt corporations, a...more
Hardcover, 369 pages
Published February 19th 2013 by HarperCollins (first published February 13th 2013)
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Feb 21, 2013 Cara marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
I feel stupid, but I marked this book as to-read simply because Veronica Roth wrote it. Does that make me a follower?
Since this is an anthology I reviewed it differently. I gave each story an individual rating and then averaged out those together to get the final rating for the book.

Hearken by Veronica Roth. 4 stars
This was a hauntingly beautiful story set in a world where bio-bombs have become a part of every day life. Our protagonist Darya has been hardened by this world. We follow her path as she becomes a hearkener-- a musically talented person with a brain implant that allows them to hear people's life o...more
Christina (A Reader of Fictions)
Basically every time I review an anthology, I do things differently. This time, since there aren't that many stories and they're a bit longer, I'm going to break it down with my thoughts about each story.

Story 1: "Hearken" by Veronica Roth
In all honesty, I was expecting to hate this story. I really was not impressed with Divergent and had no higher hopes for this short story. Well, it just goes to show that giving authors a second chance can be a good thing. I really did like this. The concept i...more
Christina (Ensconced in Lit)
I won this book from Bibliophila, Please, a great blog! Thanks to Kayla who sent this book to me.

Shards and Ashes is a collection of dystopian YA short stories, edited by Melissa Marr and Kelley Armstrong. It's an interesting set of stories-- both from the perspective of just their content, and also, from the perspective of how authors who normally write full length novels try their hand at a shorter form.

There is varying success. All of the stories have interesting slants on the dystopian worl...more
“No life is easy. It's just a different kind of hard.”

I was excited to read this mainly due to the collective amount of authors who's books I already enjoy creating this anthology of sorts. With fairly popular authors all in their own right, and based on such a popular YA theme at the current time there wasn't much choice in the matter when it came to deciding whether to purchase and read this or not.

I should begin with my actual rating of the book which is not 4 stars but 3.5 due to a number o...more
Dark Faerie Tales
Review courtesy of Dark Faerie Tales.

Quick and Dirty: Nine heart breaking and creepy and all together compelling short stories tell the tales of the broken, the desperate and the clever.

Opening Sentence: “Black or red?”

The Review:

This is a great collection of dystopian tales – some old worlds and some new ones. Some leave you bawling and some just in awe of the authors’ ingenuity. All of these short stories have clever twists and heart-wrenching moments (whether from romance or family moments o...more
Khanh (Kittens, Rainbows, and Sunshine)
It wasn't terrible, but I wouldn't read any of these authors again had I first read their work in this anthology. For the most part, the stories here needed more background to work, and a couple just made absolutely no sense in the context of a post-apocalyptic world.

For example, the first story, The Hearkeners, had me scratching my head. Ok, so you have a world in which you have to wear gas masks to protect against some attacks that aren't really defined, by people whose agendas I don't quite u...more
I mainly read this because of Veronica Roth and because I'm a dystopian junkie. I'm going to rate each story individually.

Hearken by Veronica Roth
Rating: 5 stars
Easily the best story in the anthology. I loved the writing and the whole concept was interesting.

Branded by Kelley Armstrong
Rating: 3 stars
I thought the story was cheesy and I didn't like the characters. I did like how it ended.

Necklace of Raindrops by Margaret Stohl
Rating: 4 stars
This was a beautifully sad well written story. I just th...more
Creepy, heartbreaking, compelling, extraordinary and so much more.

Veronica Roth

This is one of my favorites! I love the idea of hearkens especially the idea that music could be the only thing to save the world. I just think it was really fast paced and it would be better if it will be a book. I'd definitely read it!

Kelley Armstrong

The idea of the fortress was really great. What I liked the most was the reality in it that was presented. People getting tossed outside, b...more
First I would like to thank Goodreads for sending me this free Uncorrected (not for sale) copy of the book!! I was so excited when it came in the mail and I probably wouldn't have gotten to read these stories without it. I Also would Like to thank all the authors for coming together and putting this amazing book together!!

but anyways... basically there are 9 different stories in this 362 page book all the stories are about 30-40 pages. Each is its own unique idea. So for this I will be individua...more
Alley Kat
Shards and Ashes is an anthology of amazing short stories written by the masters of dystopia.

I enjoyed most of the stories in this novel. I loved Veronica Roth's Hearken the most. The idea of life and death songs was so captivating. I didn't quite enjoy Dogsbody. I found it to be confusing and very slow paced for a short story. Branded was also a favorite. While I'm not usually a fan of romance, the sacrifices the characters made in the story were fantastic. I REALLY enjoyed reading Beth Revis's...more
Like albums and CDs of the past, where some tracks are good while others don't have the same vibrance or power, this anthology has some great stories mixed with some duds.

All stories are set in a dystopian society but that is where the similarities end. Definitely worth a read.

Hearken by Veronica Roth –4.75 stars
A well crafted short story about Hearkeners—those who hear the song of either life or death. The story, set in a dystopian Minnesota, centers around a young girl who has a gifted musica...more
Hearken by Veronica Roth 4/5

Favourite Quote: “Everyone was both dying and living at the same time”

I liked learning about the Hearken’s and I thought what they could do was beautiful, I would love to have that gift. I like the main character a lot, I felt her feelings and reactions were realistic. However I felt the rest of the world buildings was a little too minimal, and I didn’t fully understand what had happened to the world but this story was really good for only being 38 pages! Wouldn’t...more

I am a fan of many of the authors in this anthology. However I find that I definitely prefer the stories that feature characters I am already familiar with. I really enjoyed Beth Revis' story about Orion set in the Across the Universe world.

As I mentioned I love short stories or novellas that feature characters I already know. So that said I started all the stories in this anthology, but ended up not finishing them all. But that is just me (I often have trouble connecting with characters in just...more
This review will be broken into 3 parts: one, brief summaries of the stories; two, my personal favorites; three, an overview of the anthology.


1. Brief summaries of the stories
(view spoiler)...more
Chester Carstairs
Overall rating:
3.5 stars

As a lover of the Dystopia genre, it was really a no-brainer to add Shards and Ashes in my tbr list. I was really excited to read it. And though it left me feeling meh a few times, there are wonderful stories to be found between those pages as well.

I've learned two things reading this. One, I really hate short stories. It always, always make me either want more or nauseous for being too fast-paced and leaving you so confused (and sometimes they don't. even make sense). Se...more
Michelle (Much Loved Books)
The minute I heard about Shards & Ashes I knew I had to read it, with some of my favourite authors, Kelley Armstrong, Melissa Marr, Veronica Roth, and Rachel Caine there was no question about it. Shards & Ashes has 9 books in totals, Hearken by Veronica Roth, Branded by Kelley Armstrong, Necklace of Raindrops by Margaret Stohl, Dogsbody by Rachel Caine, Pale Rider by Nancy Holder, Corpse Eaters by Melissa Marr, Burn 3 by Kami Garcia, Love is a Choice by Beth Revis, and Miasma by Carrie R...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
In this review I will talk about why I read this book and the category this book fits into collectively, but for each story will give my opinion on quotes, characters, things I have learned and general opinions on the story. Keep in mind each review may be a little smaller than my normal review size- these are short stories after all!

The cover of Shards and Ashes didn’t particularly stand out in a shelf full of dark and murky looking novels, but on closer inspection I couldn’t help but issue thi...more
This review is going to be different because this is a dystopian anthology containing nine different stories in nine different future worlds. As I go through this, I am going to add a short paragraph review of each story with my thoughts on it.

by: Veronica Roth

This was a great way to start off this book. In this story Veronica Roth created a hauntingly beautiful world. This story was just under forty pages long, yet it had characters I became invested with and a plot that kept me inte...more
Shards & Ashes, a collection of dystopian short stories penned by many of the prominent female authors in YA fiction, is an unsettling read that provides a solid sampling of the genre.

Starting out the book, we have Veronica Roth (of Divergent fame), with Hearken, the tale of 8 year old Darya, whose new-found musical aptitude has afforded her the opportunity to bring beauty to a world ravaged by doomsdayists hastening the apocalypse with biological warfare. Darya's kind are known as Hearkener...more
4.5 stars. I received this through the First Reads giveaways. This is an excellent anthology. I usually find short stories to be - well - short. I have always preferred the long novel so I could wallow in the world/character/plot building. However, over the last few years short story anthologies in the fantasy/urban fantasy genres have become more popular and some of my favorite authors are usually participants so I have had a larger exposure to this type of writing. In general, I find myself li...more
I think I've read more novellas and short stories this year than in all my other reading years combined. So many authors that I really love are producing bridge novels -- novels that bridge a time span before, between or after points in a series -- that I just can't resist. And they're good. Really, really good. (Of course, there are some not-so-fabulous ones but, for the most part, they're really good.)

Two of my rockstar authors, Melissa Marr and Kelley Armstrong, got together a whole pile of f...more
I was really looking to read a good story collection after the last one I read ended up falling flat for me. Luckily I love dystopian books and this anthology is all about the dystopian tales. I really liked most of the stories and can't think of one that I didn't enjoy at least some part of. Overall I really loved this collection and it's one that I'd definitely read all over again!

There are some big names in YA dystopia and other YA genres included in this assortment. While I think you should...more
Newport Librarians
This book is a compilation of short stories written by some of the most popular dystopian authors trending right now. All of them deal with teenagers in a somewhat bleak future, trying to find ways to survive whatever apocalypse has happened to the Earth.

The short story here really shines - it's almost refreshing to have something get straight to the point and leave a bit of mystery at the end - no sequels, no neat endings tied in a bow. From living on a 10 ft.sq mile spaceship to underground s...more
Tori Grace
Feb 07, 2014 Tori Grace marked it as on-hold-or-dnf  ·  review of another edition
I just don't think I can finish this. The first few stories were alright, but as they go on, they get more and more boring, in my opinion. This book just can't keep my attention. Plus it needs to go back to the library, so... I might finish it sometime in the future, but I already have so many books I need to read right now.
Apollonian Lit
I really liked the concept of this book. Essentially, this is simply a compilation of short stories of the same genre by various authors. Pros: if you get bored easily when reading, this book is ideal because you can just read one story at a time; there are various styles of writing and subgenres represented in here so you're bound to like at least one; they're all the same genre (dystopian future). Cons: if you're a more committed reader, you might be disappointed that these stories aren't long...more
Dark Matter
Nalini Haynes reviewed this book; for more reviews by Nalini, see Nalini Haynes on Dark Matter Zine.

Rating: 4 ½ stars

Shards and Ashes is an anthology edited by two New York Times bestselling fantasy authors who also contributed short stories. The standard of writing and editing is supremely high, particularly commendable as such a standard appears difficult to achieve.

Every story is set in a post-apocalyptic or otherwise doomed world, with characters contending for survival or seeking justice....more
Reall cool collection of short stories by nine different authors. The writing prompt was a dystopian future where the world has been destroyed for whatever reason up to the writers' imaginations.
Each book had a different concept, but they all had a similar theme - the two main characters fall in love in most of them, and there's some disease or disaster that makes them need to hide or escape. But each author put their own twist on it, which I liked.
My favorite in this book is easily Love Is A...more
Cassandra Shepherd
I really think some of the stories could have worked as novels instead of just short stories..
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5 stars= If I love you, I'll buy you a copy from this list of books. (Pls note, if you are my family or dearest friends, feel free to remind me to do so. I am lousy w remembering birthdays/holidays.)

4 stars= Don't even ask to borrow it. You should prob buy it though.

3= If you borrow it, you better not lose it, mangle it, or keep it too long.

2 or 1 star= I don't use these. If it's not a 3 star or...more
More about Melissa Marr...
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“Life's something we already understand. Death is a mystery.” 27 likes
“Love is a mistake when we're all going to die any day now.” 6 likes
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