In the Forest of the Dead, where the empire’s worst criminals are exiled, twin sisters Moria and Ashyn are charged with a dangerous task. For they are the Keeper and the Seeker, and each year they must quiet the enraged souls of the damned.
Only this year, the souls will not be quieted.
Ambushed and separated by an ancient evil, the sisters’ journey to find each other sends them far from the only home they’ve ever known. Accompanied by a stubborn imperial guard and a dashing condemned thief, the girls cross a once-empty wasteland, now filled with reawakened monsters of legend, as they travel to warn the emperor. But a terrible secret awaits them at court—one that will alter the balance of their world forever.
Kelley Armstrong IS BACK! Seriously, I was starting to get a little worried. I didn’t like Omens. I liked the Darkness Rising series, but I wasn’t in LOVE with it. It’s not a secret that Kelley Armstrong is my number one favorite author. I adore her Darkest Powers series and her Women of the Otherworld series is absolutely amazing. If I could kidnap one author and keep them forever and ever and ever, it would be Kelley Armstrong. I was a little nervous that she was writing a high fantasy book. That’s not something she’s every done before. I LOVE high fantasy. LOVE IT. Sea of Shadows is probably one of my top favorite high fantasy books of all time. I absolutely adored it. Everyone needs to go read this book right now.
My rule with high fantasy is that I must plow through the first 100 pages no matter what. I will not allow myself to DNF a high fantasy book before the first 100 pages. Why? Because almost all high fantasy books have a horrifying first 100 pages. That’s because that time needs to be detail and history heavy. It can be very boring and just bland. That can be said for the first 100 pages of Sea of Shadows. I actually had a really difficult time pushing through the beginning of this one. It was a very tough start, and I was starting to worry that Armstrong was producing another book that I didn’t so much love. I actually think that it started to get amazing before page 100. I read an EARC on my Nook and the pages were a bit off, so it’s hard to tell you all exactly when it started to get amazing. It didn’t take all that long, though. When it starts to get good be prepared, because it will get REALLY GOOD!
The characters in Sea of Shadows were spot on. There wasn’t a single character that I didn’t like. And oh my goodness. The relationships in this book are HOT! There’s not even a damn steamy scene in this book and my blood pressure was hitting sky high levels. I don’t even know who I liked more, Moria and Gavril or Ashyn and Ronan. They were just so perfect! I have new boy book crushes. I can’t wait to read more about them in the second book.
Another thing that I loved about Sea of Shadows was the sister bond between Moria and Ashyn. You don’t see a lot of girl relationships in YA books. I found it to be refreshing for a change. While both girls had their own boy dramatics on the side, I really enjoyed reading about their sisterly bond and the connection that they had. I also loved the connection that each girl had with their individual animals. It was a nice change from just being all about the guy that most books have. Sea of Shadows had several different relationships that captured my heart.
The visuals in Sea of Shadows were perfection. I ended up sucking this book down in 2 days probably because I often forgot that I was reading a book. Seriously, the pictures in my head were like swapping bodies with one of the main characters and seeing everything that was going on in real life. I experienced so many different types of emotions in SOS. I jumped, I cried, I laughed, I giggled, I blushed…Oh my goodness. I just loved this book so much! I don’t know how to express it all into words!
And the ending. THE ENDING! Oh. My. GOSH. That ending! I didn’t see it coming. I was absolutely shocked. I’m horribly upset that I have to wait like probably another year for the second book. I JUST WANT TO KNOW WHAT HAPPENS NEXT! That’s all! The ending is one of the most powerful endings that I have ever read. I felt so many emotions. I think I went on and on and on about it for days after I finished it. I was in mourning. I still am.
Overall, I LOVED this book. 5 freaking stars. And EVERYONE needs to go read it! And then they need to go read every single book that Kelley Armstrong has ever written because she is a flippin genius. Favorite author ever. I love her. Fans of Cinda Williams Chima are going to adore this book!
Publication Date: April 8th, 2014
Publisher: Harper Collins