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Dark Shores

(Dark Shores #1)

3.94  ·  Rating details ·  2,510 ratings  ·  620 reviews
High seas adventure, blackmail, and meddling gods meet in Dark Shores, a thrilling first novel in a fast-paced new YA fantasy series by USA Today bestselling author Danielle L. Jensen.

In a world divided by meddlesome gods and treacherous oceans, only the Maarin possess the knowledge to cross the Endless Seas. But they have one mandate: East must never meet West.

Hardcover, 368 pages
Published May 7th 2019 by Tor Teen
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Average rating 3.94  · 
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 ·  2,510 ratings  ·  620 reviews

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Feb 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arcs-read
((Reviewer's Note: Please read the line below in that movie trailer voice, you know the one.))

In a world divided into East and West, one people, known as the Maarin, can navigate the in between.

The Maarin are a seafaring people, who not only recover lost and stolen goods, but also trade along the coasts.

They are the only ones who know the true existence of both the East and West. Due to this, they are also the only ones who know how to traverse the Endless Seas between them.

Living under the man
Helena of Eretz ✰


According to the author, we should expect:


"~ A world inspired by Ancient Rome
~ Lots and lots of political intrigue
~ A villainous, power-hungry senator bent on conquest
~ Slow burn romance
~ Exciting sea voyages
~ Legions engaging in epic battles (on land)
~ Meddlesome gods
~ A fierce heroine who says what she thinks and means what she says
~ A brilliant hero with far too many dangerous secrets that are coming back to haunt him
~ NOT scenes where ac
Danielle Jensen
Aug 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
Shelves: my-books
I can't wait for readers to dive into DARK SHORES. Here's a few things to expect!

~ A world inspired by Ancient Rome
~ LOTS of political intrigue
~ A villainous, power-hungry senator bent on conquest
~ Slow burn romance (as if I could write a book without kissing!)
~ Exciting sea voyages
~ Legions engaging in epic battles (on land)
~ Meddlesome gods
~ Friendship, both new and old
~ Family drama
~ A fierce heroine who says what she thinks and means what she says
~ A brilliant hero with far too many dangero
A million years ago, back when I read more than four books a month and actually had time to post reviews, I read Danielle L. Jensen's debut novel, Stolen Songbird and really enjoyed it. So, I was pretty eager to try out this book and see where this sweeping, epic story about pirates and soldiers was going to take me. 

And where did it take me, you might wonder.

Far. But also not far enough.

First of all, let it be known that despite what the synopsis tries to tell you, this book is not in fact abou
Cristina Monica
This is a DNF for me. I instantly knew after reading the first page that it would be a DNF. Sometimes you just know. It’s like when you meet someone knew. The first conversation you have with that person can determine whether you can connect on a deeper level or not. Of course, it’s good to give the other person a more meaningful chance than one simple conversation, so I pushed through that boring first page. But like most relationships, if the beginning isn’t beautiful, the rest of it usually i ...more
May 09, 2019 marked it as to-read
so many good fantasy novels this year, don't know where to start
Apr 25, 2020 added it
Shelves: dnf
DNF’d at 20%

This was not holding my attention. The world building felt sloppy, with elements being mentioned and not being connected to each other or the reader in any way. I didn’t find myself intrigued by the characters or the plot enough to continue with this book, let alone a 4 book series.
Umairah | Sereadipity
May 12, 2019 rated it it was ok
Dark Shores is a tale of political intrigue that questions whether everything can be easily classified as 'right' or 'wrong'. I really thought I'd enjoy this book because the premise sounded amazing and so many other people adored it. Sadly, it left me feeling disappointed.

Plot: 2/5
Characters: 2/5
Writing: 3/5

As always, I'll start with the positives. There was a very diverse cast of characters and the word building- based off of Ancient Rome- was convincing. Throughout the novel, we are told that
3.5 stars
Before going into the book, I have to warn you: the blurb is slightly misleading. I expected pirates on the high seas but instead, Dark Shores is more focused on politics. Not that I’m complaining, because I love a book with political intrigue. I am slightly disappointed that this book did not feature any pirate and treasure raiding shenanigans. That aside, let’s continue on with the review!

The world-building was a bit weak but this is only the first novel of a series. Hopefully in the
ℓуηη, ℓσкιѕℓутнєя¢ℓαω
Ahhhhh! Why did it have to end?! ⚔️⛵️⚓️🌅 And I have to wait until May for the sequel! 😱😭

So obviously I really loved this book. It was one of my most anticipated for the year and I'm sooo happy it didn't disappoint!

I LOVED the ancient Roman influence, the politics, the fantastical world, the camaraderie and hilarious quips. I love, love, love Teriana, Marcus, Servius, Quintus, Miki & Yedda. I couldn't get enough of any of them! I wasn't at all ready for this to end and having to say goodbye to t
Brenda Waworga
Mar 14, 2019 rated it liked it
This book isn’t about pirate/piracy tho we got a glimpse of the adventure on the ship.. the story is more about empire and politics and battles and magic and gods inspired by ancient Roman! The book told by 2 POVs (Marcus and Teriana)

There were few things I love and don’t like, so lets start with things I loved. I love the main idea that Danielle tried to bring on this book… “the East continent people cant meet West continent people” is such a unique idea and I also adore Marcus one of the main
Dannii Elle
Actual rating 3.75/5 stars.

Dark Shores is the first instalment in the Dark Shores series, involving high-stakes oceanic travel, piracy and plundering, and a world divided by religion and politics. East must never meet West and West does not know that East exists at all. But all that changes when the power-hungry Western hierarchy long to stretch their reach and seek to discover if the famed never-ending seas are hiding a secret they can dominate.

Teriana is first-mate of the pirate ship that sees
Frankie Lovely
Apr 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book though!! ❤️❤️❤️❤️

Which is to say ... I enjoyed this read immensely so. In fact, I immediately purchased a hardback copy of this book and the soon to release Dark Skies upon finishing. It's that good.

What I liked

The writing is extremely smart. I never knew where it was going, but it all made perfect sense along the way. The politics play such an important role in this world and are extremely intricate. The story-line is detailed, easy to follow and gloriously twisty. The romance is bel
Thanks so much to Netgalley and the publisher for providing me with an advanced copy in exchange for an honest review!!!

Wow, what a ride! I *loved* this book. I didn't expect to love it, but I did. I expected the romance to be typical YA, which it had hints of, but seemed to be a little more realistic in my opinion. I expected the characters to be all tropy, which for the most part, they weren't (and where they were, the author really tried to flip the tropes upside down). I expected the stakes
May 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
A truly marvelous adventure! One that leaves me with so many unanswered questions regarding the story line though so I don't know if I'm upset about that or excited so I can look forward to the next installment haha. But no, I really cannot wait to see how this story continues.

The world was really interesting and well developed, and it was obvious that it was inspired by Ancient Rome which I loved. The author used some elements and made all of it her own. It also gave me a lot of Pirates of the
⭐️4.5 stars⭐️

This was how it was supposed to feel.
Like standing on a cliff high above a turquoise sea, terrified to jump but desperate for the thrill of the fall.

I'm so happy! I really needed a win and I got it, fiiinally!
Can't wait for more!
Mar 11, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dark Shores:
1. Dark Shores — 3.75⭐
2. Dark Skies — coming soon in 2020!
3. Gilded Serpent — coming soon!
4. Untitled — coming soon!

Blog | Twitter | Instagram

Thank you to the publisher—Tor Teen—for giving me an e-ARC through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

You can also read my review here

East must never meet West.
Teriana is an heir to the Maarin Triumvirate who sails with Quincense. She breaks a promise to keep silent about her people’s secret with devastating consequences
Apr 03, 2020 rated it really liked it
East must never meet West.

OMG! Guys, Dark Shores was so freaking good! I am beyond happy that I dove into it and now I'm super excited to dive into the ARC of the second book!! Oh lord, I seriously loved everything about this book.

In it, you will meet Teriana. She is the young heir to the Maarin Triumvirate and she made the biggest mistake of her life: she told someone secrets. Now these are no ordinary secrets, because no one should know anything about them.. unless they are Maarin. So it wasn
Nov 16, 2018 rated it liked it
Meh, I'm so frustrated.

I would have enjoyed this book waaaaay more if

-it had another couple of main characters
-the author didn't go so heavy on the info-dumping
-the blurb didn't advertise this as a book about and with pirates because is probably the biggest lie ever told


Athena (OneReadingNurse)
Thank you so much to NetGalley, Macmillan - Tom Doherty Associates & Tor Teen for the eARC of Dark Shores in exchange for an honest review.

For the most part, this is a quick read and a fast flowing book that kept me interested. I really liked the book until she lost me with one particular scene, which I will explain in a bit. The world is set in a roman conqueror-esque era where the Maarin traders and the Dark Shores are out of bounds....for now.

"East must not meet West"

Teriana, the heir to the
Erin Arkin
May 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: series, read-in-2019
4.5 stars

Dark Shores by Danielle L. Jensen is the first book in the Dark Shores series, and I have to tell you, I already can’t wait for the next book in this series.

Teriana is a Maarin and a pirate aboard her mother’s ship…second in command to be exact. Traveling the world with her family, she and her people hold a lot of secrets. Specifically, those that would put the rest of the world in danger from the Celendor Empire. When Teriana finds herself in a situation where she believes her best fri
Samm | Sassenach the Book Wizard
Huh! I liked this way more than I thought I would. Most people I've talked to didn't like it but wow! Despite it using tropes I'm not a huge fan of (mc constantly blames everything on themselves when they had no control & Stockholm syndrome-like romance) yet I really loved this! I enjoyed the cast. It was a bit big at the start but once their personalities free it was easier to tell everyone apart. One of the evil characters specifically said something that stopped me and made me think because i ...more
What a pleasant surprise this book was! I went into it after years of not reading much of YA fantasy (too many duds in the past) and expecting the worst because of all the hype.
I am so glad I was wrong.

Plot wise, Jensen nailed it. I really liked her world building - intricate enough to be interesting, but not too complex to be confusing. Although I have to admit it was hard for me to get into in the beginning, but I mostly attribute that to my long absence from fantasy. Also, I am not a fan of "
Ainslee || Jest and Hearts
Mar 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing

Yea, so I freaking loved this book, I absolutely devoured it in a day. The one thing you need to know before going into this book is that it is NOT a pirate book. I repeat it is NOT a pirate book.

Dangerous Shores is full of incredible world building, politics, magic, meddlesome Gods, complex characters, adventure, a dangerous quest and its inspired by Ancient Rome.

Now that we've got that covered, what is this book about then? Well Dark Shores is inspired b
Apr 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
Life is all about making the tough decisions...

This book was like a mashup of Julius Caesar and Pirates of the Caribbean. A delightful ride full of action and adventure with morally grey characters. From the lovable Aunt Yedda who refused to let a little thing like blackmail ruin her sense of humor to the secretive Captain of the Thirty-Seventh Legion Legatus Marcus who gets the job done no matter what the costs. Dark Shores is a journey across worlds with magic and political intrigue. I’ll defi
Nia •ShadesOfPaper•
You can find this review and others on my blog shades of paper

“The East and the West must be kept apart. They must be protected from each other.”

This book was one of my most anticipated releases of this year, and I went with such high expectations into it, not only because I’ve read another book by this author previously and enjoyed it, but also because the premise sounded absolutely incredible and right up my alley, and though there were some parts that I thoroughly enjoyed, I also
Ann (annreads)
Nov 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019-releases, arcs
*I received this ARC in exchange for an honest review. Thanks Tor Teen and MTMC Tours for sending me a copy!*

That was SO GOOD!
Inspired in Ancient Rome, Dark Shores is a dark tale full of adventure and political intrigue, with super complex- yet lovable characters, some complicated romance (totally digging it😂) and PHENOMENAL world building! It was everything I was expecting and more, and I literally devoured it in one sitting! I had such a blast reading it, and trust me guys, you don’t want to m
Isabel (The Reader & The Chef)
OMG! This book is fantastic.❤❤❤❤ I looove the characters, the setting and the epic adventure! Thank you so much to Danielle for letting me read it!
The Nerd Daily
May 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
Originally published on The Nerd Daily | Review by Laura Erne

Dark Shores by Danielle L. Jensen is the first book I’ve read by her and after finishing this one, it will not be the last. Her strong female characters, realistic romance, humour, and adorable characters stole my heart pretty early on. Her writing kept me going back for more, making me devour this book in three days flat. This is a story about pirates and politics and is filled with drama and moral dilemmas that will leave you fired u
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Danielle L. Jensen is the USA Today bestselling author of The Malediction Trilogy (Angry Robot), the Dark Shores series (Tor Teen), and The Bridge Kingdom series (Audible Originals). She lives in Calgary, Alberta with her family.

I would love to be your friend on Goodreads!

Other books in the series

Dark Shores (3 books)
  • Dark Skies (Dark Shores, #2)
  • Gilded Serpent (Dark Shores, #3)

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