Review: Song of Blood & Stone (Earthsinger Chronicles, #1) by L. Penelope

8:12 PM

Song of Blood & Stone by L. Penelope | Rating: ★★★☆☆ (3.5)

As a note, a copy of this novel was sent to me via NetGalley by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not effect my opinions in any way.

Finally, something GOOD! I feel like I've been in THE BIGGEST slump when it comes to YA fantasy books. I mean it: the biggest. Which is a bit unsettling, considering there's so many books out there--far too many to feel like there's a drought in the genre. But, there I was feeling like I'd forever be underwhelmed with the genre. And along came Song of Blood & Stone--which packed a seriously magical punch!

I was a little confused on it being sorted into the YA genre if I'm being honest. Much like the general confusion I felt over Sarah J. Maas' A Court of Thorns and Roses. There are many scenes in Song of Blood & Stone that feel a bit more graphic than most YA* scenes do. While I don't at all mind it, it does seem to fit a bit less and makes me wonder if it was original meant for an older audience. So, that is something you should note. If that's not your cup of tea, there will be some scenes you'll want to skim over.





Now, before I get into the good about Song of Blood & Stone, I want to address the negatives. The negatives calculated into that .5 drop on what would have been a 4+ star review (ugh, I know, I suck): I felt like it didn't live up to its full potential in terms of fantasy. Don't get me wrong, it was still full of thrills and a certain essence of magic and fun. Just not as much as I'd hoped. I went into this book expecting one thing, but was surprised to find it took a more vocal approach unto the romance.

I'm not ragging on it, of course. The story was still wonderful.

As for the pluses. Oh, there were SO MANY. I wish I could have looked past certain parts I wasn't keen on, because the rating could have likely reached 4.5/5 stars. But, a 3.5 is far from bad, so don't hate me! I'd still recommend this book in a heartbeat because it was so fun.

Song of Blood & Stone's biggest strong suit lay with its characters; their character development and backstories, and the magnificent tone in which the series' world-building takes. Nothing is left in the dust when it comes to being developed, and continuing to develop throughout the course of book one. While so many fantasy series can take on archetypes that are overdone and underdeveloped, and take the "tell not show" approach, Penelope makes certain that nothing is left in the dark.

(Plus, there are a lot of elements to this world that tie into ours. And there is a moment that will be triggering re: sexual assault.) 

She's taken great care in crafting a world that is enthralling to her readers and will leave a mark on them for good. This is essentially the perfect (!!!) first installment in a new series and shows off Penelope's writing chops--I have a feeling we're going to be hearing nothing short of praise for the series as it expands and I'm so intensely excited to read the second installment ASAP.

If you are looking for a good read that is action packed, romantic, compelling and full of diversity that is desperately needed in literature, Song of Blood & Stone is for you. This book has been out for a while and I'm honestly surprised it hasn't received more praise than it is--it's brilliant and will keep readers glued to their seat.

**I'm curious if I mislabeled this or someone else has because it kind of feels like YA and kind of doesn't.

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