Title: Song of Blood & Stone
Author: L. Penelope
Series: Earthsinger Chronicles #1
Published: January 13th, 2015 by Heartspell Media
Genres: Fantasy, NA
Rating: 3.5/5 stars
The Bookdepository link provided above is an affiliate link. I received this book from the publisher -via Netgalley- in exchange for an honest review, which does not affect my opinion in any way.
Synopsis: Orphaned and alone, Jasminda is an outcast in her homeland of Elsira, where she is feared for both the shade of her skin and her magical abilities. When ruthless soldiers seek refuge in her isolated cabin, they bring with them a captive – an injured spy who steals her heart. Jack’s mission behind enemy lines nearly cost him his life but he is saved by the healing power of a mysterious young woman. Together they embark on a perilous journey straight into the heart of a centuries-old conflict. Thrust into a hostile society, Jasminda and Jack must rely on one another even as secrets jeopardize their bond. As an ancient evil gains power, Jasminda races to unlock a mystery that promises salvation. The fates of two nations hang in the balance as Jasminda and Jack must choose between love and duty to fulfill their destinies and end the war.
I am a huge fantasy fan and before reading this novel, I don’t think I had ever read NA Fantasy? I’ve read adult fantasy -which usually has little to no romance which I’m surprisingly in love with- and young adult fantasy -which usually has a lot of romance and I also love. So what I’m concluding from this is that fantasy can have romance in it or it can’t but as long as the novel is done right, I will love it. So new adult fantasy was something new for me!
First off, the world of the Earthsingers is really interesting! There are two countries, Elsira and Lagrimar. In Elsira, people don’t have a Song -so the ability to Earthsing, which is basically doing magic thanks to the nature. And the people are white -I think. In Lagrimar, people do have a Song and are black. Now the two countries are separated by a magical barrier because the countries are at war. Every time the barrier is broken for a bit, a Breach war happens. Now the mean character lives in Elsira, where everyone despises her because of her skin colour and abilities, even though it is impossible to kill people using Earthsinging. Isn’t that intriguing?
I do wish that there was a little bit more world-building going on. During the novel, you learn more and more about it but sometimes I wish there was just that tad more. For example, I can’t really envision anything except for the mountain at which her cabin lies.
As for the actual storyline, I have to say that I did enjoy it for the most part. I mean, it kept me clustered to my tablet so I could finish it in one sitting -in a matter of hours.I feel like so much happened in this book! It was definitely a whole roller coaster ride. To be honest, I feel like this book could’ve either been a standalone -especially with the way it ended- or split up into two books. I know that sounds weird but I felt that the story was a bit rushed towards the end, like everything was supposed to be tied up in that way before the book ended. But there was so much going on that I got a bit confused at times.
I really enjoyed the characters! Jasminda has lost so much in her life but she is so strong. What I found really interesting about her is that she has a very realistic outlook on her life. Especially when it comes to Jack. And she knows her worth:
I don’t want to be a secret, hidden away never allowed to see the light of day. I don’t want to be a liability. I want to be a treasure.
YES! I agree Jasminda. Every person should see themselves as a treasure, and should be treated accordingly. I liked Jack as well, although I do find that their relationship went a bit fast sometimes. It’s not instalove, because they don’t talk about love from the beginning, just attraction. But still. There were some really intriguing and great side characters too but I can’t really talk about them without spoiling you.
I did enjoy reading A Song of Blood and Stone. The world is interesting and the story was very action-packed. Plus I liked the characters. I did feel like it was a bit rushed towards the end and that it could have been a standalone. So I don’t know whether I’ll read the sequel, because I quite liked the way it ended here.