So, after ACOWAR I started reading Shadow and Bone [The Book Depository]. It’s a tale of Grisha darkness and light that will enchant you. Although I find the Grisha trilogy way lighter than Six of Crows, Leigh Bardugo has done it again. Bardugo’s Grisha tales have swept me into a tale of power, darkness, love, and deceit!
We meet Alina, our female hero, and her love interest, Mal. She starts being weak and unattractive. However, Mal is robust and gorgeous. Little they know that Alina is going to be one of the best Grisha in the history of Ravka. But, is that good or bad news for them?
[SPOILERS: this review has a lot of spoilers. So, if you haven’t read the book, stay away!]
Alina and Mal are orphans who join the army to make a living. Alina is a dull mainstream girl who loves Mal. But, she seems like a ghost. He’s always with other girls. But, one day, things change when she summons light. No Grisha is capable of that. Soon, the Darkling, at the service of the Ravkan king takes her under his wing. First of all, for protection, and secondly, for his plans to save Ravka.
She is heartbroken because Mal doesn’t answer any of her letters. Since she arrived at the Palace and started training, all communications with Mal stopped. She made a friend, Genia. But she is stunning, and she seems aloof at times. And then, there’s the Darkling.
He makes her feel secure. Although darkness surrounds him, she is ever more compelled to his side. To the point that Alina starts desiring the Darkling. And then, one day, Mal appears in the Palace. It seems that he’s the best tracker in the army and the only one who could trace a stag. Grisha need amplifiers. Since Alina is different from the others, she needs a mythical creature that only Mal could find.
And things go astray. She discovers, to her horror, that Mal didn’t get her letters. The Darkling has been playing with her. He doesn’t want to save Ravka by making disappear the horror of the Unsea, but make it bigger. He wants to control it, and by doing so, bringing peace everywhere under his command. Alina was just a tool.
I won’t spoil the book further. Although Alina and Mal are great characters, I must say that the Darkling is also compelling. At least in this first book of the trilogy. Alina seems too naive, and Mal a little bit strong headed.
Although I found this book compelling, Six of Crows is still my favorite. What can I say? I love the crooked gang! But, if you’re hooked on Grisha powers, then you should definitely try the trilogy. You’re up to have a great time with all the characters and all their struggles.
Who would you side with? Alina or the Darkling?
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