Customer Reviews

71
4.4 out of 5 stars
Shadow and Bone: The Grisha 1
Format: Kindle EditionChange
Price:£4.49
Your rating(Clear)Rate this item


There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.

on 22 July 2013
Read an article that recommeded this book so thought i'd try it. Couldn't put it down and read the second book in the series straight after. Can't wait for the conclusion.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
on 20 February 2014
I would recommend this book to anybody looking for a charming fantasy page-turner. Since I started reading Shadow and Bone, I couldn't put it down. Now onto book two...
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
on 8 December 2014
AMAZING BOOK!

Here's my full review on my blog:
http://www.elongatedelegance.com/2014/12/book-review-shadow-and-bone-by-leigh

Please check it out :) xxx
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
on 29 December 2014
Loved this book, could not put it down.
If you enjoy being swept into another world you will love this book, can not wait to read the next one!
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
on 20 April 2014
An absolutely incredible book, with extraordinary places, characters and a brilliant plot.
Recommend this to any young adult, or even an adult!
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 23 August 2013
The summary of this book made it sound as though it was about an ordinary girl with a unique power that could change the world, who finds herself torn between a dark mysterious figure and a faithful childhood friend. In short, it sounded like YA cliché central. On one level, that's a pretty fair description of the plot, but if there's one thing this book proves, it's in the hands of the right author, the seemingly most overused plot devices can still seem original and pack a real emotional punch.

I expected to vaguely enjoy this book. In actuality, I utterly loved it. Unputdownable is an overused phrase, but I actually cancelled pre-planned Friday night drinks to stay in and finish it! It's a long time since I've been so mentally engulfed in a novel. It's difficult to say what made it stand out from the wide variety of broadly similar books that's I've read and merely liked. Sometimes, a story just gels with a reader, and sometimes an author is just a brilliant storyteller, and I think both were true here.

If I tried to be more precise though, I'd say it was the following things that made it special for me:

The first was the setting, which was basically a fantasy version of Tsarist Russia. It's great to see a fantasy novel use any model other than medieval England as it's template, but I also thought that the glamour of the Russian court and the harshness of the landscape make for a great backdrop.

Secondly, the fantasy elements were well done: developed enough to give people who like to immerse themselves in another world a bit of a thrill, without being too overwhelmingly detailed for people who are mainly interested in the action and the romance.

The plot was nothing I hadn't seen before and was in many ways quite straightforward, with only one or two really twisty moments, but it was very well done and left me desperate to find out what happened next and made me constantly veer between emotions. There were some cool concepts, such as a monster-filled strip of land where it's always dark which cuts the country off from the sea, or the hierarchy and training methods of the Grisha, in effect a race of aristocratic sorcerers.

The real standout aspect, however, was the characters. Alina was an enjoyable heroine and easy to like - a good mix of ordinary but unique, powerful but weak. She did make a habit of doing exactly the wrong thing quite consistently, in an "I'm fleeing my enemies so I'm going to stop in a crowded town for food" sort of way, but I found that quite endearing. I think it's pretty much what I'd end up doing. That said, there is one scene where she makes an utterly inexplicable decision which made me want to reach into the book and shake her. You'll know exactly what I mean when you read it. The deer. That's all I'm saying. Most of the supporting characters were pretty good too, though some of the Grisha and soldiers sometimes blurred into one.

Above all though, what I really loved was the Darkling, the leader of the Grisha, and the strength of his scenes with Alina. I've always had a soft spot for those characters that tread a fine line between dark love interest and antagonist, but since leaving my teens behind I've rarely developed a proper little book crush on one. The Darkling was the finest example I've seen in years and a new entry on my all time favourites list, making me intensely nervous and utterly seduced in every scene he appeared in. He's the sort of character who makes a scene sexier by showing up and saying a few words than most characters manage in the most explicit sex scenes.

I'm launching straight into book two, at great risk to my social life over the next few days. If you remotely like this sort of book, I suggest you launch just as enthusiastically into book one.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
I'm sitting here trying to work out why I waited so damn long to start reading this book... It was sitting on my bookcase for months and I kept meaning to pick it up, but I never did. I'm SO glad that I changed my TBR list of Bout of Books at the last minute, but this was such an amazing book!

The book doesn't just have one of the most beautiful covers ever, it also has one of the most amazing stories ever. Every page of this book was fantastically written and I felt myself being pulled deeper and deeper into the story with every page I read. I got completely sucked in by the Grisha world and I was extremely intrigued to find out what kind of Grisha's there were and what they could all do. It was fascinating learning about it all.

Alina was amazing. I just seriously loved her so much! At the start, she was just a normal girl and then suddenly her whole life changed when she's out in the Fold. She finds out that she's actually a Grisha - a Sun Summoner - and The Darkling has been looking for her to help him save the kingdom.
She gets swept up into the Grisha world. She starts to realise that she can do some good for the kingdom and get rid of The Shadow Fold. She trains and learns to control her powers and she became such an amazing character. She was powerful, confident and she was so happy. I really loved seeing Alina happy and finally feeling like she fit in.

The Darkling was a very confident and charismatic character, which is what made him the perfect villain. He sucks you in and you can't help but feel drawn towards him. He radiates power and it's really hard not to like him, especially when he's acting sweet. But then, when I actually saw what The Darkling was capable of at the end, my feelings towards him did a complete 180. However, I'm still looking forward to seeing more of him in the next book.

I never really got a good feel for Mal at the start of the book because he wasn't really there long enough for me to get anything other than he seemed like a great friend for Alina. But then when he reappeared at the Little Palace, I didn't like the way he talked to Alina. I get that he was upset, but still. It wasn't until the last couple of chapters when Alina and Mal were together that I started to really love Mal. He was such a sweet and caring character. He would have traveled the whole world to get Alina and he captured my heart. Seeing how far he would go to rescue and protect her and how deeply he cared for her made me instantly love him. I loved Alina and Mal together <3

I'm also hoping I'll get to see Genya again in the next book. I really loved her character. Her and Alina were great friends, and I'm hoping that they'll meet again in the next book.

The world of The Grisha was so fascinating that I flew through this book. I loved learning about the different Grisha's and learning what had caused The Shadow Fold. I adored seeing the Grisha's demonstrating their powers at the King's banquet. It was fascinating to read about and it was beautiful to imagine it all in my head. The revelation of The Darklings true nature, Alina's BADASS powers and when they clashed at the end was superb! I'm so excited to get my hands on the next book!

Overall, this was such an amazing and unique novel. I haven't read many fantasy novels, but this is definitely one of my favourites.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 15 August 2013
When I closed the covers of this book, late at night, I drifted into a vivid dream bursting with midnight blue keftas and beautiful - but blinding - white light. Leigh Bardugo is a master storyteller, who draws you into her richly-imagined world and refuses to release you... even after you've turned the last page. Shadow and Bone has occupied my thoughts - day and night - ever since I began it.

My attempts at explaining the books I love the most always turn out to be feeble... but I'm going to try and give this my best shot. Shadow and Bone is YA fantasy at its most divine, but also at its most engaging. Alina, as a protagonist, is likable and endearing, feisty and determined, as well as witty and admirable. The different relationships constructed between her and all the other characters - such as Genya, The Darkling, Mal and Baghra - are expertly done... And... it's just... however Leigh Bardugo did all this I'll never know! Seriously, she's a legend, I tell you.

The pacing was just immaculate and the climax was superbly written. Reading this book just reminded me of so many reasons why I love reading, the most prominent being: escaping to another world. No matter all the bizarre places I happened to be when I read this book - on a beach, in the middle of a field, on a train - I could easily be transported back to the nation of Ravka after reading only one or two sentences.

With heavy Russian influence, and an interesting blend of adventure and fantasy, Shadow and Bone really stands out when you look at recent YA books. Whilst most seem to be typical, Hunger Games-esque dystopians, Leigh Bardugo's start to this promising trilogy is a unique, cleverly-thought-out tale of a fantasy world I love. The idea of the Grisha powers intrigued me, and the plot of this "swathe of impenetrable darkness" overcoming a nation was definitely unique. I can't wait to see how things pan out in Siege and Storm!

Basically, I can't recommend this book enough. I received a review copy from Orion, but that has in no way affected my review. I'm being truthful here; Shadow and Bone is all you can ask for in a novel... and much, much more.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 3 July 2013
With its interesting and original </span>magical premise, realistically drawn characters, and well-constructed yet cleverly divided world, SHADOW AND BONE was a very pleasant surprise that kept me entertained from page one to the very end, with nary a slow spot in between.

On the surface, it may have occasionally seemed reminiscent of other books I've read in this genre, and even had a few ideas/tropes that are perhaps starting to become a bit too predictable within it--ordinary girl discovers she's a super special snowflake with gargantuan powers she knew nothing about, being the most obvious one, but there were others, too. But thankfully, there was just enough of a new spin on them, and, more importantly, the characters were interesting enough, that they suddenly seemed fresh and revitalized somehow. Even for someone who's, admittedly, read more than her fair share of this genre's offerings.

What I particularly enjoyed was the conflict regarding the magic users versus the non-magic users. The way they were either revered of feared depending on which side you were on. Those without power covet it. Those with power just want yet more power. And of course, there's always some nutjob who just wants to TAKE OVER THE WORLD!!! It just wouldn't be the same without one, really, and this book is no different. The bad guy, though....he/she/they were the perfect kind of bad guy--my favourite kind. The kind that you find yourself wavering over and occasionally even agreeing with, despite your better instincts. The baddie with the slightly chance of redemption is like the sweetest of temptations that this reader simply cannot resist. I just love me a good antihero. A villain you love to hate and hate to love. So I enjoyed that aspect a lot.

As well as personal conflicts on the small scale, the split kingdoms are also set up perfectly for future epicness and large scale battles, and the whole idea of the Shadow Fold and the Unsea captured my imagination wonderfully. I can't wait to see what Bardugo plans to do with it all. It's the perfect rough canvas to drop a young heroine with brand new powers on and say "Now fix it, missy!". So I'm sure there is a lot more to come because, as with most first books in a series, this one had a lot of character and world set-up to do, but the potential is huge.

So, as you can see there was a lot to enjoy, so why only 4 stars? Well, it really boils down to just one thing--my lack of connection the the main character.

Now, don't get me wrong, I enjoyed the heck out of Alina, and don't actually have anything negative to say about her at all (perhaps with the exception of some occasional childish stubbornness, but even that I can forgive). And, like I said up top, she is a well-written and realistic character (even with the super special snowflake aspect, she was still likable). BUT, if I'm being totally honest, I felt ever so slightly detached from her. She was all things a nice heroine should be; brave, selfless, even self-deprecating and funny. But for whatever reason, I didn't find myself wanting to champion her like I have with other heroines from similar titles (Neryn from Shadowfell by Marillier being the first to come to mind--Egads, I loved that frickin' book!). For me, Alina was just "okay", but didn't inspire me further than that.

Still, if you normally like this kind of YA historical fantasy whatchamawhosit, or if you just enjoy a good old magical adventure with a sweet little dash of romance thrown in, you should definitely give SHADOW AND BONE a go. It has a lot going for it, and with more time I'm sure Alina could work her little wily way further into my heart to take this from a good read, to a really great one. The kind you finish and want to start right back at the beginning. That's what I'm hoping for when I continue with the next book, <a href="http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/14061955-siege-and-storm">Siege and Storm</a>, and I will of course let you know how I get on:)

My rating - 4 Stars ★★★★
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
on 10 February 2014
Excellent plot, characterization, suspense & ending. If you're looking for a well written and believable story then this is for you.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
     
 
Customers who viewed this item also viewed


 
     

Send us feedback

How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you?
Let us know here.