Review for Shadow Scale by Rachel Hartman

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“… and this is how the world runs, pulling us apart over and over again.”
I really loved the first book in this series so I was really excited to dive back into this world! I loved how the article in the beginning sums up some stuff that happened in the first book. I really needed that since I read Seraphina over a year ago and forgot most of it. I also liked that I didn’t feel the size of this book. But there were many, many things that made my experience not so enjoyable.
It wasn’t until the end that it dawned on me why I wasn’t liking it.
Mainly, I didn’t like it because of the lack of romance. Now, keep in mind this is strictly my opinion. Some people love this BECAUSE of the lack of romance but romance is my drug and I NEED a good one in order to enjoy the plot. I love how romance conflicts the decisions a heroine must make but yeah, this lacked that factor and made me struggle with keeping up with the story.
Another aspect I didn’t enjoy was all the political talk. I couldn’t follow with it so I gave up midway.
I also didn’t seem to connect to Seraphina in any way. I wasn’t feeling her emotions as my own and I felt a wall between me and her. I hated, absolutely hated, the actions she took. Or didn’t take. She wasn’t the type of character I enjoy and it dampened my mood. She annoyed me more than anything else.
The names of places and people were also a little… ridiculous? Sadly, I couldn’t take them seriously and I also gave up trying to remember what was what. Surprisingly, I could follow the characters a little better than the places.
The only character I love out of these two books is Lucien. If this series were told in his perspective, I would have loved it so much more! But it’s not and I had to really work for sightings of him.
This book had an immensely slow pace for me. It didn’t get fascinating until the last 30 pages, hence the half star. It was really subtly entertaining. I mean, I wasn’t hating it but I also wasn’t liking it. This world is incredibly unique and the ending was bittersweet. I felt a pang in my chest for the way things were resolved but nothing to lose sleep over.

3.5/4 stars.

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