Shadow and Bone

Author: Leigh Bardugo 
Pages: 358 
Publisher: Henry Holt & Co. 
Format: Hardcover 
My Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Summary (from Goodreads): Surrounded by enemies, the once-great nation of Ravka has been torn in two by the Shadow Fold, a swath of near impenetrable darkness crawling with monsters who feast on human flesh. Now its fate may rest on the shoulders of one lonely refugee.

Alina Starkov has never been good at anything. But when her regiment is attacked on the Fold and her best friend is brutally injured, Alina reveals a dormant power that saves his life—a power that could be the key to setting her war-ravaged country free. Wrenched from everything she knows, Alina is whisked away to the royal court to be trained as a member of the Grisha, the magical elite led by the mysterious Darkling. 

Yet nothing in this lavish world is what it seems. With darkness looming and an entire kingdom depending on her untamed power, Alina will have to confront the secrets of the Grisha . . . and the secrets of her heart.

Because I read all three books in the trilogy in less than a week (and because I want to keep from spoiling this amazing series for anyone) I'm going to keep my reviews short and sweet. 

This book hooked me from the very first sentence. Bardugo's writing is AMAZING - I couldn't put the book down for more than a few seconds at a time (needless to say, it would be a bad idea to start reading right before bed). I full-on cheered when Alina finally realized her potential, and everything that came after ... well, here's your warning: read this book with a box of tissues in arm's reach. You will need them. 

I don't read much heavy fantasy anymore, but this trilogy has reawakened my love of all things fantasy and paranormal. I definitely recommend this series to anyone who enjoys paranormal YA, fantasy, and sci-fi, as well as anyone new to the genres. 

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