Official Synopsis from Goodreads: 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 Schwab, a 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.
My copy came from: I borrowed the hardcover from my local library.
Review: Thoughtful, dark, and unique, This Savage Song is a fast read and you’ll be clamoring for book two when you finish!
This Savage Song is a dark fantasy tale involving monsters and humans. Without going into too much detail (the book will explain it all!), suffice it to say that the monsters and humans try to coexist in a divided city. One side of the city is ruled by Henry Flynn and the Sunai monsters, and the other side is controlled by Callum Harker who uses the Corsai and Malchai monsters to control the humans. Henry’s son, August, is a Sunai, or one who can steal a soul with just a bit of music. Harker’s daughter, Kate, is fully human and comes home to be nearer to her father. Kate begins to attend Colton Academy, and August is sent there to keep an eye on her and stay close, as the truce between the two sides appears to be crumbling.
Why are there so many shadows in the world, Kate? Shouldn’t there be just as much light?
I enjoyed both the characters of Kate and August. Kate is plucky and strong, and August is haunted by the souls he steals and what he is. What I loved about how Victoria Schwab wrote this book is that when Kate begins to look into who August is, Schwab doesn’t drag the reveal out for chapters and chapters. Kate looks into it, and she discovers it. This was really great and made for more tension to be developed elsewhere within the plot.
There are monsters in the book, but I didn’t feel like the book was scary in any way. It had more of a creepy, eerie, mysterious vibe to it rather than scary. And I’m easily scared! I may not have picked this book up due to the monsters because I am such a scaredy-cat, but I really enjoyed this book.
“It hurts,” he whispered.
“What does?” asked Kate.
“Being. Not being. Giving in. Holding out. No matter what I do, it hurts.”
Kate tipped her head back against the tub. “That’s life, August,” she said. “You wanted to feel alive, right? It doesn’t matter if you’re monster or human. Living hurts.”
The book was somewhat predictable; I was able to guess several of the big reveals before they appeared, but that didn’t diminish my enjoyment of the book. Rather it just fed my curiosity about the other, more original aspects of the book, which were the monsters and the world. I won’t go into too much detail here, as the way it is told in the book is how you should experience it, and if you are into dark fantasy at all, you will probably really like this book! There was a weight to it without being too heavy, but also a lightness in the relationship between Kate and August, and I can’t wait for book two, Our Dark Duet, to be released in June! Seriously – this book ends on a massive reveal that I didn’t see coming at all, and I can’t wait for the conclusion to this duology. This definitely gets a LIKE from me!
Bottom Line: Fun, dark, and unique.
Does this sound like a good book to read? Or is it too scary? Have you read This Savage Song?