There is something mystical about life in imperial Russia!
There's nothing wrong with being a lizard either. Unless you were born to be a hawk.
They say don’t pick a book by it’s cover but I never listen, I picked this book because of the Saint Basil’s Cathedral graphic. My hope was to be lost in a world of Russian fairy tail.
I was not disappointed!
This is the first book in the
Leigh Bardugo weaves a beautiful story, a fairy tail fantasy, that takes place in the land called Ravka which is very much modelled on imperial Russia.
Ravka was plagued by centuries of wars with it’s neighbours until a dark power manifested it self tearing Ravka into half. The Shadow Fold is a swath of impenetrable darkness which is haunted by monsters and beasts.
Alina is an orphan girl who, together with Mal an orphan boy her age, is placed under the care of a local Duke who keeps orphan kids and give them shelter and education.
When Alina and Mal come of age they are conscripted into the Ravka armies to aid the land and it’s people in crossing The Shadow Fold and fighting against the other nations who are growing stronger on their borders.
Aline accidentally discovers a unique power which throws her in the centre of the kingdom’s magical elite - the Grisha - where she is expected to learn and master her magical gifts.
Alina meets The Darkling, the most powerful of the Grisha, and find her self extremely drawn to him, all the while thinking about what happened to Mal.
“The problem with wanting," he whispered, his mouth trailing along my jaw until it hovered over my lips, "is that it makes us weak.”
I loved the world built by Leigh Bardugo [F|W|T|I] and I loved the complex relationships.
First of all, and I’m biassed, but I love the fact that the world is based on imperial Russia. I love the feeling of the old Russian fairy tail which I used to read and watch as a little girl.
The love triangle between the characters was very skilfully written. Just like Alina I had a crush on Mal, I was confused and angry when Mal didn’t look for her and then romantic friction with The Darkling what do i say?!?! I was left breathless when he kissed her against the door. Most interestingly I forgave Mal just like Alina did.
I'm sorry it took me so long to see you, Alina. But I see you now.
This book has made my 'Best of 2016" list and honestly I'm so excited to embark on the next two books. In fact I have acquired all of Leigh Bardugos books for my book shelfs.
Published by Hachette
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