Thursday, August 9, 2018

Book Review: This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab

This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab

Published: July 5th, 2016

Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, Paranormal

Hardcover Pages: 464

Synopsis: There’s no such thing as safe in a city at war, a city overrun with monsters. In this dark urban fantasy from author Victoria Schwab, a young woman and a young man must choose whether to become heroes or villains—and friends or enemies—with the future of their home at stake. The first of two books.

Kate Harker and August Flynn are the heirs to a divided city—a city where the violence has begun to breed actual monsters. All Kate wants is to be as ruthless as her father, who lets the monsters roam free and makes the humans pay for his protection. All August wants is to be human, as good-hearted as his own father, to play a bigger role in protecting the innocent—but he’s one of the monsters. One who can steal a soul with a simple strain of music. When the chance arises to keep an eye on Kate, who’s just been kicked out of her sixth boarding school and returned home, August jumps at it. But Kate discovers August’s secret, and after a failed assassination attempt the pair must flee for their lives.

Thoughts: Here we have another book that I wanted to like more than I actually did. It features two interesting main characters on opposite sides of a conflict in Kate and August, and doesn't resort to romance to bring the two of them together, even though it does seem like perhaps there could be the possibility of something there in the future. The world is one you have to kind of think about to entirely understand, which isn't necessarily a bad thing (it takes a bit to understand what the monsters are, though it is left unclear as to just how the whole thing is happening in the first place, which is perhaps a larger gripe of mine than I originally thought since I'm still going on about it).

But I think what I found missing were some real twists and turns. It seems like the last twist at the end was supposed to be something of a surprise, but honestly I saw it coming from a mile away. I get that you want the audience to figure some things out because that makes them feel smart, but I guess I just wanted something a little... I don't know... different. The story basically starts out as a boarding school drama, then turns into a road trip that eventually leads back to home. Heck, I've written that story myself.

Okay, let's get back to what's turning out to be my biggest problem, apparently. The world, the creatures, how it works, why it's happening, why certain creatures have to use music to do their deeds... I mean, are these questions answered in the follow up? If not, I don't know that I'd care to read it. Here's the thing - if the story itself was engaging enough, I wouldn't care as much about those questions. But because I'm expecting everything that happens, I just want to know more about the world itself and why the monsters are there in the first place. From a brief glance at the reviews, it seems like maybe the second book is more satisfying, so maybe I'll give it a shot since it's a duology and that will be a guaranteed end.

That said, the writing itself is good. I did some more reading up on the author and found that she wrote another more adult series (Shades of Magic) that is generally reviewed better than this one, so more likely I'll check that out before I take a chance on the sequel to this one.

Rating: 3/5

Buy on Amazon

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