Brittany (Nice Girls Read Books)'s Reviews > Valiant

Valiant by Holly Black
Rate this book
Clear rating

by
769085
's review
Jan 10, 2008

liked it
Read from August 21 to 22, 2016

“Dead or not, I have come for his heart and I will have it.”


After re-reading Holly Black’s debut YA novel, Tithe, I was rendered a little disappointed. I am glad to say that although Valiant still rubbed me the wrong way in a lot of aspects, the story and plot itself seemed to have a lot more structure this time around.

Like Tithe, Valiant has (in my opinion) an extremely unlikable character as the lead. Valerie is a lot of nothingness, really. She is easily swayed by others, pressured and makes terrible decisions. There wasn’t a lot of room to fall in love with Valerie.

Valiant is extremely dark and harrowing – brace yourself. Don’t think of this one as simply a gritty urban fantasy. Instead, be prepared for more of a story about living on the streets of New York in deplorable conditions with deplorable people. Although a lot ‘centres’ around the existence of faeries, I felt that more of the focus of this one was on Val trying to navigate living on the streets.

A lot of things didn’t sit well with me in Valiant. There’s animal cruelty (I’m still not over this, despite it being a short scene), drug addiction, violence, sex, etc. While all these things can really add to a story and make it memorable, or make someone uncomfortable, all it really did in Valiant was make me realise just how unlikeable all these characters were.

The only character I relatively liked was Ravus, the troll. I think Ravus could have been developed a bit more, but what we did find out about him I really enjoyed. He seemed the most ‘sane’ of the characters and I was a little disappointed that he fell for Val. Val kind of redeemed herself by finally grabbing some guts and self-worth, but I was pretty ‘eh’ about their relationship all things considering.

Valiant is more of a ‘new story set in the same world’ rather than a sequel to Tithe, but we did get to see a cameo scene of Roiben and Kaye. There was also a bit of mentioning of the events from the first book, but I wouldn’t say you had to read Tithe before Valiant, etc. The two pretty much stand alone.

In terms of story structure, Valiant was a lot more put together. It read easily with a good pace. The only thing really detracting from this book was my complete loathing for 99% of the characters. Dark and edge, in this case, does not automatically mean a character is ‘cool’ or ‘interesting’. Lolli, Dave, Luis and Val were just terrible people.

I am looking forward to reading Ironside, however. I never got up to book three on my first read through of this series, so it should be something new and exciting for me.

flag

Sign into Goodreads to see if any of your friends have read Valiant.
Sign In »

Reading Progress

08/21/2016 marked as: read
08/21/2016 marked as: currently-reading
08/22/2016 marked as: read

No comments have been added yet.