Sunday, 24 July 2016

Monsters are gonna come and eat you all | This Savage Song

This Savage Song (Monsters of Verity #1) by V.E. Schwab

Published: June 7th 2016 by Titan Books Ltd
Genre: young adult, dystopia, paranormal

Goodreads summary: 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 Schwaba 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.


By now, you must know that Victoria Schwab is one of my favourite authors, and she never disappoints. Sure, I don't read all of her books 5 stars, but it's still so pretty damn close every time.

To be honest, I would love to see what is happening in Victoria Schwab's head, because she always crafts such unique and dark worlds I'm deeply in love with (but living there wouldn't be the best idea, right?). This Savage Song was a post-apocalyptic novel where monsters appeared because of all the violence that we, humans, perpetrated. This idea is so interesting considering what happened in the world in the last few years, but also so disturbing. While the idea of this world was creepy, I was engrossed by it, because I love when there are monsters in a world, as it means so many possibilities. There also was a song about it in the book (like Lila had a song in A Gathering of Shadows <3), which I'm totally digging and you should too.

    “Monsters, monsters, big and small,
    They're gonna come and eat you all.
    Corsai, Corsai, tooth and claw,
    Shadow and bone will eat you raw.
    Malchai, Malchai, sharp and sly,
    Smile and bite and drink you dry.
    Sunai, Sunai, eyes like coal,
    Sing you a song and steal your soul.
    Monsters, monsters, big and small,
    They're gonna come and eat you all!” 

Schwab is so talented when it comes to world-building, because you never feel overwhelmed with all this new information to process. Indeed, she gives you hints on what is going in but doesn't deliver the whole information until her reader actually needs it. This book was about the notion of good and evil and how complex it was, especially in such a terrible world. You couldn't exactly tell who was "right" and who was "wrong", because the situation was unique. Her writing is so vivid and she can writes such amazing sentences, I fall in love with it every time. It feels like her characters are coming off the page, which can be a little frightening at times, because Kate Harker would definitely scare me to death.

The book started on a quote of Vicious, Schwab's first adult novel, and I loved that so much. It made me laugh, because you need some nerve to do that, but she can totally get away with it, as it was one of the best books I've ever read. While the prologue totally hooked me (because OMG, Kate), it took me about 100 pages to really get into the story, because there wasn't much happening. The first third of the book built a lot of the initial situation - so the synopsis is actually spoiling something happening almost halfway through - but the book was so worth it after that. It was so action-packed and fast-paced and I couldn't stop reading, because I was rooting for the characters and was scared for them at the same time. I loved the last twists Schwab used, because I hadn't seen that coming at all, and I'm pretty excited for Our Dark Duet, the sequel, because while it didn't end on a cliff-hanger, I'm intrigued by the direction the book will go.

The characters were so complex and I was so in love with them. On one hand, we had Kate, who was so kickass and willing to prove her father that she was worth it, she was a Harker, but realized, during the book, that the notions between good and evil weren't as simple and maybe her father wasn't the good guy. On the other hand, you had August who also wanted to prove himself, but was so insecure and willing to be human. He was so, so cute. Except when he was dangerous? But even then. Also he was playing the violin and lured his preys thanks to it, how cool is that (except for the preys, oops)? He was becoming so strong near the end of this first book and I can't wait to see who he'll become. So basically, it was about these teenagers trying to figure themselves out in a messed-up world and went through so much character development. Moreover, Ilsa, August's sister, was such a scary but precious cinnamon roll.

You might have seen a lot of reviewers mention that, but there is no romance in this book. None. Kate and August are coming together not even because there are friends, but because their situation is calling for it, and then, of course they become friends, because it's a life or death situation. But that was all. I loved their relationship, because they came to be so loyal to each other, no matter how awful the situation was and thinking about it…  It is praiseworthy.

Overall, this book was amazing, but it took me some time to get into it, because I was waiting more from the plot. But once I went through this, I was completely addicted to This Savage Song and didn't want it to end. It had such complex and relatable characters on top of a unique and scary world. I don't read dystopian novels that much these days, but you forget it's one while you're reading it, because it doesn't really use the tropes of the genre. I would 100% recommend this book to everyone, but be warned that it could take you time in the beginning.

Have you read this book yet? What did you think of it? What's your favourite book by Victoria Schwab (it's close between Vicious and A Gathering of Shadows for me)?

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