Song of Blood & Stone
"Penelope delivers an engrossing story with delightful characters in this fantastic opening to [the Earthsinger Chronicles]."--Publishers Weekly, starred review
"Great characters, beautiful writing, incredible world-building."--Ann Aguirre, New York Times bestselling author
Romeo and Juliet meets Return of the K ...more
What a premise! Not only did this book show beautifulness exteriorly, but it also demonstrated a similar enough quality for its content.
The beginning was gorgeous. It really was. The first chapter (the chapters were quite long though) held a great introduction of the world-building, Earthsong magic and especially our dear, strong and courageous heroine, Jasminda. I love her name; so original and catchy. It was a pleasure to read about her character. However, I found it regrettable to hear so ma ...more
ARC provided by St. Martin's Press in exchange for an honest review.
Song of Blood & Stone is the historical fantasy I’ve been looking for. This story is set in an alternate 1920 and has a really unexpected wild west feel to it, but I loved it. The romance was so good, the topics were so important, and the characters completely stole my heart. This book has a lot to love within its pages, and I completely recommend this story to you all.
“Most folks hate easy and love hard. Should be the ot...more
Let me begin this review with a few trigger warnings. Near the beginning of the story there is a lot of racism, some abuse, and attempted rape. I will also say that this is very much NA and not YA as there are some pretty detailed sexual scenes. If these are not for you, I would suggest passing this book up.
That being said I feel like this book focused strongly on the idea of finding peace and beauty no matter your skin color or where ...more
4 “I needed some time to fall into it” stars
Hero: ***/2 stars (he made pretty dumb decisions sometimes)
Heroine: ***** stars (had nearly no power but dignity and morale strength in spades)
Plot: ***/2 (not overtly complicated but sometimes jumbled)
Heat: *** (this is NOT a YA as you have sex but it’s not overtly spicy either)
World building: **/2 (I wanted more. I ...more
I had a hard time rating this one. So I decided to give you the pros & cons and let you decide for yourself.
- DID YOU SEE THAT COVER?! It's gorgeous. It's perfect. It's going up in my "BEST COVER EVAH!" list.
- The main character is a dark skinned girl (and the cover reflects that!) Not only that, but there's an interracial couple, and even a same sex couple later on. Hurray for diversity!
- This is a self contained nov ...more
Actual Rating 4.5
Jasminda and Jack go on a journey full of magic and romance I enjoyed. In this fantasy the layers of Jasminda and Jack are slowly peeled back as they face danger and fall in love. Jasminda is a wonderful protagonist who wants to find a place to belong in Elsira although her Lagarimi heritage gives her healing powers and a distinctive appearance. She goes on a adventure with Jack to help Elsirian's rise up against Lagarimi's mad King, the ...more
This book has so many good things about it, the problem I found is that I think having it all in one book ended up taking away from the importance of each issue. Racial, refugee/immigration, power struggle, star crossed love, magical, social status, LGBTQ, and even good vs. evil all became too many good ingredients in the pot. Truly, there was so much good stuff in here, but I thought that they didn't get the time spent for eac ...more
----Lynda Jean Barry, an American cartoonist and author
Leslye Penelope, an American author, pens her debut YA fantasy book, Song of Blood & Stone that happens to be the first book in the Earthsinger Chronicles series. This book is set in an enchanting parallel universe where a young black woman tries to save her kingdom with her magical powers despite of all those discrimination about her skin color. It i ...more
The plot was not easy to follow and the visions made parts of the story more confusing. The romance between our main characters was always at the forefront. You may find this as an added selling point; I prefer action to romance so to me, it was a distraction.
Thanks so much to NetGalley and publis ...more
This ARC was provided by NetGalley in exchanged for an honest review!
Song of Blood & Stone was an emotional roller coaster. It was so freaking good though! I shipped the heck out of Jasminda and Jake. Jasminda is basically an outcast while Jake is a rebel soldier. They are basically made for each other and two peas in a freaking pod. Again, I shipped the heck out of these two!
I could probably talk all day and every day about this coup ...more
I ended up really enjoying this while I read it. The book is written in alternating POVs, with very short chapters that give a nice episodic feel to the story. I liked the unique setting - they seem to have earlyish 20th century technology but combined with more familiar fantasy elements like magic. I also liked the characters; the main female character is biracial and engaged in an interracial relationship, and race is an absolutely central issue in the story.
This is also very much a ...more
Song of Blood & Stone is a fantasy lite read that centers around Jasminda, a bi-racial Earthsinger, and Jack, a military man that is more than what meets the eye. I did like the two of them together and felt their connection. Their romance feels like a slow burn (even though it really happens pretty quickly) and it added a good dynamic and subplot to the ...more
Now, don't get me wrong, I'm trying to write this review in a respectful manner. I know that probably a lot of people don't agree with me, because I've seen a lot of very positive reviews, but I'm not that positive at all. I really liked the start of the story, but while I was reading, it felt like more of the same. A girl with her own struggles, meets a boy, gets in a romance and plays a very large ro ...more
✓ Diverse cast of characters
✓ Wonderful fables that introduce each chapter
It pains me to do this, but DNF 30% - no rating. I wanted to like this soooo much, but it's not for me. I believe this was first self-published several years ago and then picked up by St. Martin's. The writing and story are good, it just didn't click with me.
I am going to link to my friend, Melanie's review because this deserves positive word of mouth and she gave it four stars and goes into detail about ho ...more
This book read as a cute, tropey fantasy romance with cheesy surprise royals, but at the same time it had mythological components and a 1920s-inspired setting, and also tried to be gritty because I guess nothing is serious if it isn't graphic. These are good ideas, if you do not try to make all of them work inside th ...more
First in the Earthsinger Chronicles
Jasminda lives close the border of Elsira and Lagrimar. She looks Lagrimarian and has the talents of their people. She is an Earthsinger—able to heal, read emotions, and control things, but her powers are weak and she limited in what she can control. She has lived life in Elsira facing persecution and now her family’s farm faces being taken away from her. When she is traveling back from the city she comes acros...more
Although this book is now published by St. Martin’s Press, my first encounter with Song of Blood & Stone was in 2016 when an earlier version of it was entered into the Self-Published Fantasy Blog-Off, the writing competition created by author Mark Lawrence. Ever since the SPFBO’s launch, several of its alum have already been picked up by traditional publishing, and it’s always great to see that number grow by the day. ...more
Jasminda is alone, her family is gone and her magic makes her an outcast in Elsira, her homeland, as does the color of her skin. Her parents didn’t let country boundaries stop their love from growing and they may have finally the price. When soldiers arrive with a severely wounded prisoner, a ma ...more
I received this copy from publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
"The blue of the day's sky and the black of the night's are different, but one is not better than the other. We need both."
I was pleasantly surprised by this one, I found the story to be so satisfying. It ended up being exactly what I needed to read! If you're looking for a fantasy novel that pushes the boundaries of young adult into new adult without being ...more
Ehh I was just bored while reading this. There is a reason why I went screaming off to read books by Rosamunde Pilcher. I kept hoping that the story would improve, but it did not. I read elsewhere this was originally a self-published book (back in 2015) that was re-published again this year. I don't know why that was, maybe the publishers were hoping to hop on some of the Young Adult fantasy with charact ...more
True rating: 3.5
Song of Blood & Stone is a previously self-published historical fantasy that is now being traditionally published and is the start of a series. In this fantasy world, there is a veil between two worlds, one without and one with magic. On one side is a tyrannical ruler who strips magic users of their magic, keeping it for his own. On the other, the Queen Who Sleeps has been dormant for 500 years waiting t ...more
I've been looking forward to sitting down to write this review, because this was one of the better fantasy titles I have read this year.
In this novel you get the current (present) POVs of both Jasminda and Jack. Jasminda is such a strong female lead--she's independent, strong, fierce, loyal, intelligent, and has no problem with sacrificing or own wants for the greater good. And Jack... without revealing too much about him.. he stands out from the norm for his situation in life. He tends to see ...more
This book has big potential! I think many people will like this novel. The synopsis already made me curious, because it sounds so promising! The beginning of the book, especially the prologue was gorgeous! The idea of Earthsinger and the two powerful rulers The Queen Who Sleeps and the True Father being at war immediately catched my attention. Jasminda and Jack try to stop a great evil and meet in the beginning of the ...more
All included quotes have been taken from an ARC and may not match the finished publication.
"Not just cracks, not just a breach--the entire Mantle will fall. Soon. And the True Father will be unleashed on us all."
DNFing at 30%
Content Warning: Brutality, Attempted Rape, Prejudism, Violence, Death (the attempted rape scene especially pushes this book into the New Adult genre and not YA.)
I'm not sure if it was the ...more
|YA Buddy Readers'...: Song of Blood & Stone by L. Penelope -> Starting March 25th, 2018||2||11||Apr 12, 2018 06:55PM|
|YA Buddy Readers'...: Song of Blood & Stone (Earthsinger Chronicles #1) by L. Penelope - Starting March 2018||1||7||Mar 01, 2018 04:12AM|
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She was born in the Bronx, just after the birth of hip hop, but left before she could acquire an accent. Equally left and right-brained, she studied Film at Howard University and minored in Computer Science. This led to a gr ...more