4 / 5 Stars
Highly imaginative but slightly confusing.
I always like authors who go all out with their ideas (I mean, why not? The world doesn't need any more bloody vampire books!). Victoria Schwab isn't afraid to create new ideas in the fantasy genre, and that's something I appreciate.
In this strange, dystopian world, there are three types of monster, with the 'highest order' being Sunai - those who feed on sinners. Harker, a harsh man, rules over one side of the world, and the other is controlled by Flynn. However, dissent broils between the two - and it's clear to see that war is on the horizon.
Kate Harker, daughter of the aforementioned Harker, is a cool, calculating troublemaker. When she meets August, she believes him to be a sweet, innocent teen; until she realises he's something very different indeed...
I liked the dynamic of Kate and August's relationship in this book; that for me was the strongest part. In fact, I've thought that with previous books by this author; she doesn't go in for soppy, smushy romances, and I'm heartily relieved at that, because god, those fantasy tropes have been done to death.
I also appreciated the landscape; this sense of tension and of things about to bubble over into chaos. It was maintained right through to the end, which is a tricky thing to pull off.
My only criticism is that I was a bit confused by the whole monsters thing. How did they come about? Why have they become so prevalent? How is it that some people can control them? I was left with a lot of questions and this was a bit distracting. Perhaps the next book has all the answers!
Overall, it's a good read for those who like their fantasy books though. I'm not so into fantasy these days, but I certainly found it compelling and wanted to read on.