August 30, 2016

REVIEW| This Savage Song

This Savage Song (Monsters of Verity #1)


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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 Schwaba 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 thoughts:

The Cover:

I am not one for Schwab's UK book covers. If I were to compare them to the US covers, ours just looks as if they were just your a-typical vengence thriller novel. The kind where the protagonist is doing that weird staring down the lens whilst doing some sort of swagger walk or that distant character pulling that moody-thinker-stares-off-to-the-distance-and-we-can't-help-but-fall-for-them look.
That was a long one.
That was until Titan Books commissioned Julia Lloyd, again, to design a book cover for This Savage Song; presenting and showcasing Vee's ever-continuing exploration of various dichotomies. Still keeping with the same colours scheme as seen of Schwab's other UK covers, the drastic change in style is in it's simplicity-- stunning. It is the subtle transformation of the liquid substance into the budding rose that hints at Vee's own interest into the blurring and questionability between 'right' and 'wrong'--- the 'moral grey'.

The Content:

This Savage Song is Schwab's response to violence and mass shootings that were on the rise and are still going on in America; Schwab thought about how often it is violence will usually breed more violence. Through her supernatural lense on the world, she came up with Verity. A post-violent America where this violence has ultimatly breed monsters. 

"Monsters, monsters, big and small,
They're gonna come and eat you all."

The opening of This Savage Song is something for admiration. Schwab sure doesn't hold back on that poor school church. Poor Nuns. But, it had me cackling and screaming "YES!" just at the sheer joy of another of Vee's strong female protagonists. Kate Harker is willing to do anything she can in order to prove herself to her father (Callum Harker). Like many teens, as much as we all don't want to admit it is rather selfish, she would rather do something in the short fall of her own gain. -- AND I LOVER HER FOR IT!

"Corsai, Corsai, tooth and claw,
Shadow and bone will eat you raw."

The only issue I have about Schwab's world building is like always she only really opens up a tempory window into her various universes that as per, leaves a reader craving for more. I hold one question-- Can we please have some more of other cities mentioned in TSS?

"Malchai, Malchai, sharp and sly,
Smile and bite and drink you dry."

I did rather enjoy how Vee altered her perspectives in narration, switching from first person in August's POV to the distant third person in retrospec of Kate. Creating that other layer of understanding for both of their emotional distance. Schwab managed to keep the changes flawless using page breaks and chapters to diffrentiate the two voices

"Sunai, Sunai, eyes like coal,
Sing you a song and eat your soul."

In all honesty, this is just a sentence to appreciate Allegro: the cat that August brings home after a little eating session. 

More cats in fiction, please?


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