Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Shadowblack by Sebastien de Castell

Title: Shadowblack
Author: Sebastien de Castell
Genre: Young Adult, High Fantasy
Source: Hot Key Books

The second book in the page-turning SPELLSLINGER series for all teen, YA, adult and fantasy readers.

It's a few months since Kellen left his people behind. Now aged sixteen, Kellen is an outlaw, relying on his wits to keep him alive in the land of the Seven Sands. He misses home, he misses family and more than anything, he misses Nephenia, the girl he left behind.

Then he meets Seneira, a blindfolded girl who isn't blind, and who carries a secret that's all too familiar to Kellen. Kellen and Ferius resolve to help - but the stakes are far higher than they realise. A Shadowblack plague is taking hold - and Kellen can't help but suspect his own people may even be behind it.

Perfect for fans of The Dark Tower, Firefly, The Hunger Games and Guardians of the Galaxy.
Review by Nara

Shadowblack is the second book in the Spellslinger series, and I think it continues with a lot of the good things from book one.

There aren't too many negatives in the book, but the one big one I can mention is that I don't really think the romance was needed at all. It felt forced and the tone of the novel felt more like it didn't really need romance anyway. I feel like it would have been better if it stopped at the lighthearted jokes from Reichis and then developed more in books later in the series.

As always with Sebastien de Castell's books, the tone/voice of the narrator is quite funny, and the banter between the good old squirrel cat "business partner" and Kellen is hilarious. I honestly feel like the best character in the series so far is Reichis solely for that excellent banter. Ferius is also becoming more and more intriguing as the series goes on, and I'm sure that her past will be fully revealed at some point. On the other hand, the other Argosi introduced in this book felt somewhat bland, and I would like to see the secondary characters fleshed out a bit more in further books in the series.

While I will probably continue reading this series, I don't think I will continue reviewing them. It sort of seems as if I won't have that much new to say about the books, as even with this book compared to Spellslinger I feel like I'm repeating myself somewhat. I would still say this series is a fun one, but would probably pitch it more at a middle grade level than YA.

Liked it
Overall: 7/10
Plot: 3/5
Writing: 4/5
World Building: 3.5/5
Characters: 3/5
Cover: 4/5