Lamia's Reviews > Shadow and Bone

Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo
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Jan 02, 2016

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bookshelves: paranormal, arc, 3-and-a-half-stars, 2012, meh-fest, young-adult, court-political-intrigue
Read from May 01 to 03, 2012

Actual rating: 3.5 stars

This can also be seen at The Book Eater.

So, this started out really well. Really, I liked it... until I didn't.

Shadow and Bone is about Ravka, a country at war. There's a mysterious "fold" that threatens to engulf everyone in endless darkness, magical powers, soldiers, kings, intrigues and a heroine in the middle of it all who's supposed to save the world.

I think the fantasy aspect was well done, if not particularly original. The Grisha is one of the King's armies, composed of people with magical ability. You have people who can throw fire, people who can manipulate water, some can reshape glass and so on. I found the Shadow Fold passages to be very confusing, though, but maybe that's just me. It wasn't described properly and I couldn't visualize what Alina was talking about so I'm still confused as to how the whole thing works.

Alina is a strong narrator who, despite her short comings, doesn't spend her time drowning in a pit of despair and self-deprecation, and I found that refreshing. She's likable, and her voice is honest and touching and makes you feel her loneliness, her homesickness and her yearning to belong.

I also found Mal to be a remarkably realistic protagonist. None of the usual embellished, love-sick puppy with a side of whiny. He's a boy. He doesn't talk about his feelings or how (this isn't really a spoiler, but just in case you don't want to know anything about potential love interests, it's tagged as such) (view spoiler)

This was a nice read, and the whole make-over/new home/new powers aspect was pretty fun, if a bit cliché (especially Alina's relationships with other Grisha females. They were either shallow or evil. Come on now). But to me, the main issue was... Depth, I guess? As I've said, it's nice and fun, but doesn't really make you think, make you ache, it lacks a more sophisticated quality you can find in Melina Marchetta's Finnikin of the Rock or Laini Taylor's Lips Touch. After a while I started waiting for this little something extra, that little je ne sais quoi that turns an average fantasy book into a good one. But it never came.
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Quotes Lamia Liked

Leigh Bardugo
“I missed you every hour. And you know what the worst part was? It caught me completely by surprise. I'd catch myself just walking around to find you, not for any reason, just out of habit, because I'd seen something that I wanted to tell you about or because I wanted to hear your voice. And then I'd realize that you weren't there anymore, and every time, every single time, it was like having the wind knocked out of me. I've risked my life for you. I've walked half the length of Ravka for you, and I'd do it again and again and again just to be with you, just to starve with you and freeze with you and hear you complain about hard cheese every day. So don't tell me why we don't belong together," he said fiercely.”
Leigh Bardugo, Shadow and Bone
tags: mal


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message 7: by rameau (new) - added it

rameau I won't be reading it then. Had you absolutely loved it, I might have reconsidered.


Lamia rameau wrote: "I won't be reading it then. Had you absolutely loved it, I might have reconsidered."

Yeah, you probably won't like it since you're pickier than I am.


message 5: by rameau (new) - added it

rameau Picky? Who me? :)


Lamia rameau wrote: "Picky? Who me? :)"

I always feel apprehensive when I rec you something tbh


message 3: by rameau (new) - added it

rameau You have a pretty good record so far.


Will DISLIKE
DISLIKE EVERYTHING IN THIS
INCLUDING YOUR FACE


Lamia Will wrote: "DISLIKE
DISLIKE EVERYTHING IN THIS
INCLUDING YOUR FACE"


D:


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