Wow! I am thoroughly surprised and pleased with this book. To be honest, I didn’t expect to like it. I read Schwab’s A Darker Shade of Magic and thought it was okay but I wasn’t overwhelmed with like for it, but this, this I like.
First off, I will say that I loved the concept. I mean, a dystopian fantasy where violence breeds monsters? How can you not? I didn’t even mind that there wasn’t a speck of romance in this because the characters are each fascinating (though I did find Kate annoying at some times). This was dark and twisted and Schwab did a fantastic job with it. I actually wanted it to be longer and I can’t believe I have to wait forever and a day for the sequel. 😦
Title: This Savage Song (Monsters of Verity #1)
Author: Victoria Schwab
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Release date: July 5, 2016
Length: 428 pages (hardcover)
Genre: Young adult, fantasy, paranormal
Synopsis: (from Goodreads) “Kate Harker wants to be as ruthless as her father. After five years and six boarding schools, she’s finally going home to prove that she can be.
August Flynn wants to be human. But he isn’t. He’s a monster, one that can steal souls with a song. He’s one of the three most powerful monsters in a city overrun with them. His own father’s secret weapon.
Their city is divided.
Their city is crumbling.
Kate and August are the only two who see both sides, the only two who could do something.
But how do you decide to be a hero or a villain when it’s hard to tell which is which?”
My rating: 4/5 stars
Just so you know, that could be August. 😉
Kate Harker has been through six boarding schools before her father, Callum Harker, allows her to return to V-City. There, she attends Colton Academy, a school under the protection of her father, a protection that people will pay a steep price for as long as it protects them from the monsters in the dark. But all she wants to do is prove to her father that she is his daughter–that she can be cruel, cold, and unfeeling, but when she meets August Flynn, what she thought about monsters–at least his kind–begins to change.
“Malchai, Malchai, sharp and sly, / Smile and bite and drink you dry.”
August Flynn wants to be human. He tries every day, remnants of each passing day without going dark evident by the tally marks on his skin. When he starts school at Colton Academy under the request of his human father, Henry, he makes reluctant friends with Kate Harker, all the while hiding the fact that he’s a monster–and a particularly deadly one.
“Sunai, Sunai, eyes like coal. / Sing a song and steal your soul.”
But when the two discover that there’s more going on in their part of the city than anyone will let on, Kate and August must find a way to stop the truce from breaking and a way to keep the monsters at bay.
“You could burn so brightly … If you let yourself.”
The writing isn’t anything special. It’s direct without being flowery, but I found myself drawn in, and I think it’s from the way Schwab writes her characters. She makes them relatable and while I couldn’t quite relate to Kate, I definitely found myself drawn to August. My favorite character, by far, is Ilsa, though we don’t know much about her. The ending and what happened to her killed me.
Initially, I was a bit confused about the monsters and how they came into existence but as I continued to read, I was entranced. I will say that it reminded me a lot of vampires, especially with the reference to the monsters “eating” and how they needed to eat or else they would go “dark” but then I discovered how unique each of the three monsters were, and the whole vampire idea was put on the back burner.
THAT ENDING THOUGH. What a cliffhanger! UGHHHH. Why do I torture myself with books like this? Ones that are just released and the sequel doesn’t come out for another year or so? I’ll be on the edge of my seat with anticipation though!
Have you read this yet? If so, did you like it? If not, is it on your TBR?