Title: This Savage Song
Author: Victoria / V.E. Schwab
Genre: Young Adult, Adult
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Date published: July 5, 2016
Page Count: 427 (+23 Intro) = 450
Source: Personal purchase.
Summary: There’s no such thing as safe in a city at war, a city overrun with monsters. In this dark urban fantasy from acclaimed 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, This Savage Song is a must-have for fans of Holly Black, Maggie Stiefvater, and Laini Taylor.
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. In This Savage Song, Victoria Schwab creates a gritty, seething metropolis, one worthy of being compared to Gotham and to the four versions of London in her critically acclaimed fantasy for adults, A Darker Shade of Magic. Her heroes will face monsters intent on destroying them from every side—including the monsters within.
I really enjoyed this book!
I found the story-line to be fairy original, as well as some of the creatures / entities found within the story. Without spoiling anything, I’ll say that one of the monster types is similar to an existing monster trope, but that Schwab put her own spin on it, which I definitely appreciated.
The world in which the story takes place is interesting in that it reminded me of other stories in places, but still managed to retain its own feel. I did find that in some instances, I had to use my imagination due to descriptions being a little vague. This is not necessarily a negative observation, but simply a comment I am making.
The characters were easy to distinguish between, and were definitely fun to read about. I did find that I felt myself missing more character-depth, however. This may be because I started This Savage Song after having finished one of my now-favourite books, which was extremely rich in detail (character, world, dialogue, etc.).
Overall, I think that I went into reading this book with very high expectations due to the feedback it’d been receiving. And I’ve also been hearing great things about Victoria Schwab for some time. Therefore, my high expectations may have caused me to be a little disappointed with what I gleaned from this book.
That being said, I do look forward to the next installment in the series. While I am not as attached to the characters or to the world in which they live, I do still have hope that this will change for me with the next book. And I do care enough about them to want to know what will become of them and their world.
I will be reading another Victoria Schwab book (A Darker Shade of Magic) for the readathon in which I am currently participating, and I still have hope that I will fall in love with Schwab’s writing, and at least one of her worlds and characters therein.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Victoria “V.E.” Schwab is the product of a British mother, a Beverly Hills father, and a southern upbringing. Because of this, she has been known to say “tom-ah-toes”, “like”, and “y’all”. She currently lives in Edinburgh, Scotland, and when she is not wandering in search of buried treasure, fairy tales, and good tea, she’s tucked in a cafe, dreaming up monsters.
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