Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo

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Rate: 5/5

Medium: Kindle

Overview (No Spoilers): It’s wonderful when you find someone who has similar tastes in books as yourself, as when I’d started at my new job a coworker and I started naming off some of our favorite series and were excited when Red Rising and Queen of the Tearling both were high on our lists. As such, when he recommended the Grisha Trilogy by Bardugo I had to immediately add the title to my TBR pile.  Previously, I’d only read Bardugo’s Wonder Woman, despite seeing glowing reviews by my fellow bloggers regarding her other series, e.g., Six of Crows duology, Grisha  Trilogy, Nokolai duology. My brother and his fiance actually met Bardugo when she was in Seattle on tour for Wonder Woman and had only wonderful things to say about her. I hadn’t avoided her works for any specific reason other than the fact they’d never been specifically recommended to me by fellow readers. That being said, I devoured Shadow and Bone, finishing this read in two days. I couldn’t put down my Kindle, becoming totally absorbed within this literary realm of magic and war. The reader is just as ignorant of the elite Grisha as Alina, thereby they had to navigate this treacherous society blindly along side the would be mapmaker. This element of unknown adds a level of suspense that is kept taut throughout, heightening every interaction. Overall, in Shadow and Bone, Bardugo developed an intricate foundation from which the rest of the series can be readily expanded upon. With the detailed world building and character depth already established, I’m excited to see how the rest of the story and realm will evolve, especially as off stage locations are brought front and center.

Additional Insight (Spoilers Abound):

  • It was a total leap of faith that Alina on the spur of the moment trusted Baghra instead of the Darkling. Such an impossible decision to make.
  • Does Mal exhibit unknown powers due to his unique tracking skills?
  • How was the Darkling able to spring his trap on Mal and Alina in the woods? The poor elegant stag! What other mystical animals will we encounter?
  • What adventures await in the True Sea?
  • Did anyone survive the Fold after Alina abandoned them there? Did the Darkling?
  • Why did Alina not explain to Mal about why she didn’t have to take off the necklace? How will she destroy the Fold?
  • Will Alina’s guard that she friended on the stage coach come over to her side?
  • How do the Grisha get their powers?


  1. This is definitely one of my favourite reads, I hope you enjoy the rest of the trilogy! I definitely loved it the whole way through, so much so that when it came time to read Six of Crows I just couldn’t do it. I’m still waiting until I feel like I’m over the Grisha trilogy to pick it up but I fear it may be a while yet.

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  2. The fun thing about this universe is all three series are very different from each other. This one is more of a traditional YA fantasy, Six of Crows is a comedyish heist, and I can’t quite describe how I’d describe King of Scars (I’m in the middle of it), but they’re all great.

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  3. The Grishaverse will be coming to Netflix soon with Shadow and Bone , an original series!

    I’ll be reading the book first. Thanks again Sarah. My TBR list is starting to look like Classics I’ve always meant to read and Sarah’s 4s & 5s.

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