February 19, 2016

REVIEW: Reign of Shadows (Reign of Shadows #1)

Reign of Shadows (Reign of Shadows #1), by Sophie Jordan
Publish Date:
February 9, 2016
Publisher: Harper Teen
Format: ARC, provided by the publisher
Genre: young adult fantasy
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 4.5 STARS

(Synopsis) Seventeen years ago, an eclipse cloaked the kingdom of Relhok in perpetual darkness. In the chaos, an evil chancellor murdered the king and queen and seized their throne. Luna, Relhok’s lost princess, has been hiding in a tower ever since. Luna’s survival depends on the world believing she is dead.

But that doesn’t stop Luna from wanting more. When she meets Fowler, a mysterious archer braving the woods outside her tower, Luna is drawn to him despite the risk. When the tower is attacked, Luna and Fowler escape together. But this world of darkness is more treacherous than Luna ever realized.

With every threat stacked against them, Luna and Fowler find solace in each other. But with secrets still unspoken between them, falling in love might be their most dangerous journey yet.

It's been a long time since I've had a burning desire to read YA. I'd read one here and there, but it wasn't like it used to be for me. But, recently, I had that niggling burn again to lose myself in some good YA fantasy. And so, I picked up Reign of Shadows. 

I have to tell you, it was everything I wanted. There was a lush world with an intriguing back story and fearsome creatures. There was a princess in disguise and a roguish bad boy (who isn't really all that bad, of course). There were secrets and misunderstandings and a crazy cliffhanger in the end. 

I'd never been given a taste of anything else. I'd certainly never confronted a boy that smelled of ferocity and life and vitality. A boy with a deep, rumbling voice that made everything in me tighten in a way that I couldn't comprehend. It was new. Different. It was feeling.

I flew through this book. From the very beginning, Luna's story captivated me. This 17-year-old girl who has never known anything but the tower in which she lives is suddenly thrust into the big, bad, dark world with a boy she only just met and a vague destination. It sort of reminded me of the Disney movie Tangled - without all the hair. 

I wasn't afraid of death.

It's that I would die with so little to show for my life. A long stretch of days spent trapped in a tower. 

I was afraid that was all I'd ever have.

Luna is an awesome heroine. Even though she's been sheltered her whole life, her guardians have done their best to prepare her for a life outside. But, nothing could protect her from the harsh realities out there. The scarcity of food, the danger from The Dark Dwellers, and the crap for company in the form of Fowler. But, Luna presses on and never gives up. She makes hard choices and deals with the consequences. 

Then there's Fowler. He's been making hard choices for years, and the effects of him NOT dealing with the consequences are eating him up inside. Luna is an unexpected complication to his plan to reach the only alleged place on the planet where there is real sunlight. But, there's still plenty of good and noble things left in him, and he proves it over and over again. Even though he was difficult sometimes, it was still impossible not to love him. 

The Dwellers, the 4 foot tall bats - the darkness itself - this world is full of scary and awesome dangers. I'm sure there's still more to come. After all, we have yet to meet the evil Chancellor in person. 

Reign of Shadows was an incredible beginning to what is sure to be an exciting series. I can't wait to see what happens next.  

1 comment:

Jessica @ a GREAT read said...

OOoh nice!!! I cannot wait to read this one! I bought it already, but haven't found time to start it! Though with this cliffhanger ending, I am wondering if I should "attempt" to wait until the next and final book comes out and binge the series. It's a wait and see matter, for sure! LOL! Great review!