Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo is one of the best YA books I've read in a long time. It has intriguing characters and a strong willed protagonist that is sure to not disappoint. Alina has just enough gumption to be interesting, and enough modesty to be believable.
Alina and her best friend Mal, after leaving the orphanage, join the First Army of the King. Mal is an expert tracker, Alina is a map-maker. She pines for him with more than friendship, but his devil-may-care approach to life keeps her true feelings at bay. Like all good soldiers, they must fight to protect their world and when conflict arises crossing The Fold, Alina discovers a power she never knew she had.
Her display of magic saves many lives, and in turn earns her a seat in the palace where she will train as a Grisha. Grishas are magical beings that have powers to bend elements, create illusions, and strengthen souls. But when Alina discovers secrets long hidden in the palace, she makes a choice that will change her life forever.
Shadow and Bone is a great adventure, a comfortable romance, and an inspiring charade - certainly worth the read. It is a series and I have plans to return to the other two books as soon as my reading list dwindles down a bit. Siege and Storm is book two followed by Rise and Ruin. I just hope Alina makes it to the end of book three without losing her character.
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