Publication: March 6th 2018 by Henry Holt Books for Young Readers
They killed my mother.
They took our magic.
They tried to bury us.
Now we rise.
Zélie Adebola remembers when the soil of Orïsha hummed with magic. Burners ignited flames, Tiders beckoned waves, and Zélie’s Reaper mother summoned forth souls.
But everything changed the night magic disappeared. Under the orders of a ruthless king, maji were killed, leaving Zélie without a mother and her people without hope.
Now Zélie has one chance to bring back magic and strike against the monarchy. With the help of a rogue princess, Zélie must outwit and outrun the crown prince, who is hell-bent on eradicating magic for good.
Danger lurks in Orïsha, where snow leoponaires prowl and vengeful spirits wait in the waters. Yet the greatest danger may be Zélie herself as she struggles to control her powers and her growing feelings for an enemy.
Children of Blood and Bone was an alright read for me but nothing spectacular. It just didn't live up to the hype for me unfortunately and left me underwhelmed.
I had a very hard time getting into the story in the beginning. My mind wandering and I just couldn't stay engaged with what was happening; I also kept getting confused with all the names and places which probably didn't help.
The plot was very slow in the beginning and didn't really start to pick up until about 30% in. I also found that it was quite similar to other stuff I've read in the genre. It had a lot of elements from other YA fantasy books which made it very predictable for me. I also thought the book was too long, the author dragged out aspects of the story that could have easily been edited down.
Zélie was likeable enough but she felt very much like a cookie cutter character.
The only character I actually enjoyed reading about was Amari, the princess. She was so well developed I loved getting to know her and the layers of her character. Her arc was perfectly paced too.
While I think Inan,the prince, was the most interesting because he's so confused about what to do, he did annoy me at times and I found myself getting bored of his drama.
I really enjoy the friendship between Zelie and Amari. I loved how they weren't best friends straight away and their relationship built over time.
The romance felt very forced and unnatural. It just didn't make sense to me why the characters suddenly liked each other, they had hardly any chemistry.
I was not a fan of the first person POV narration. Every time I picked up the book it would take me a while to figure out whose head I was in. Their voices just weren't very distinct from each other. I this this story would have been better told in third person.
While I wasn't a fan of the narration style I did enjoy the writing in general. There was some lovely passages in the book with vivid imagery and descriptions.
I do appreciate that this book has a full cast of POC characters which is something I never come across in my reading and am glad it's getting so much hype as we need more representation like this in genres other than contemporary.
Sounds like I really disliked this book but I didn't I just thought it was fine. I think I wasn't in the mood for high fantasy and the hype made my expectations too high. I'm not 100% sure if I'll read the next one. The ending left me interested in continuing but I only think I'll pick up book 2 if it gets amazing reviews.
Thanks for reading,