review

BLOG TOUR | Reign of the Fallen & Song of the Dead by Sarah Glenn Marsh

Thank you to Penguin Random House for letting me be on this blog tour and for gifting me a free arc copy of Song of the Dead!

In this blog tour I will be talking about both books! First up will obviously be the first book in the series and then the second one! I’ve clearly labeled them both with banners so that I don’t confuse anyone!

I was able to buddy read both of these books with the lovely Lau who is also doing this blog tour same day as me so go and check hers out as well!

Disclaimer: All opinions are my own.

Title: Reign of the Fallen

Author: Sarah Glenn Marsh

Publisher: Razorbill

Published: 23 January 2018

My Edition: Hardback

ISBN: 9780448494401

Series: Reign of the Fallen 1/2

My Rating: ★★★★★

Without the dead, she’d be no one.

Odessa is one of Karthia’s master necromancers. catering to the kingdom’s ruling Dead. Whenever a noble dies, it’s Odessa’s job to raise them by retrieving their soul from a dreamy and dangerous shadow world called the Deadlands. But there is a cost to being raised: the Dead must remain shrouded. If even a hint of flesh is exposed, a grotesque transformation begins, turning the Dead into terrifying, bloodthirsty Shades.

A dramatic uptick in Shade attacks raise suspicions and fears among Odessa’s necromancer community. Soon a crushing loss of one of their own leaves Odessa shattered, and reveals a disturbing conspiracy in Karthia: Someone is intentionally creating Shades by tearing shrouds from the Dead- and training them to attack. Odessa is forced to contemplate a terrifying question: What if her magic is the weapon that brings the kingdom to its knees?

Fighting alongside her fellow necromancers- and a powerful girl as enthralling as she is infuriating- Odessa must untangle the gruesome plot to destroy Karthia before the Shades take everything she loves.

Long Live The Dead

Reign of the Fallen for me was a reread as I did read this book back in January 2018 when it came out and I gave it five stars back then too!

“Those finished with life crave it less over time.” 

Reign of the Fallen is done from Odessa’s point of view, she has just become a Master Necromancer and her partner (in more ways than one) is Evander. In this book there are two worlds, normal world and a hidden gateway to the Deadlands, which is quite explanatory, it’s where the dead first go when they die, a bit like Purgatory I suppose! Necromancer’s bring the dead back to life and in this world the dead coexist with the living, they’re still the same person and it doesn’t change them EXCEPT they have to wear shrouds because if a living person gazed upon them, even just a little bit of flesh, they turn into Shades which are zombie like monsters and will end up hurting their loved ones whom they no longer recognise.

The current King of Karthia is dead and has been ruling for around two centuries (I hope I got this correct) and at the very beginning of the book we start with Odessa and her partner Evander, killing the king to stop him from turning into a shade. They then go into the Deadlands to bring the King’s soul back with the help of one of his living relatives as that’s one of his main links to the world. This time around it’s Valoria, she is second in line to the throne should the current king ever leave the world for good and from this trip she develops a friendship with Odessa. When they’re on their way to the gate into the Deadlands trouble is already afoot, one of their Master’s who taught them has been killed but Odessa and Evander don’t know what he was doing in the Deadlands all by himself in the first place, as it is forbidden for a necromancer to go in by themselves without a partner. Once the trio are then they’re in the Deadlands, Odessa spots a Shade and it’s moving faster that she’s even seen one before.

After the King’s soul has been taken from the Deadlands and returned to his body there is a festival where nobles and other Dead are gathered to celebrate when a Shade turns up and Odessa and her fellow necromancer’s have to fight it and also get the people to safety. Shade attacks are rare and now they’re happening everyday and Odessa and her necromancer friends have discovered there is a dreadful plot afoot and they loose one of their own, WHICH WAS JUST AS FREAKING HEARTBREAKING AS THE FIRST TIME BECAUSE YOU KNOW WHAT I FORGOT ABOUT IT!!

Odessa is a selfish character and she realises this herself throughout the book and tries to change it, when one of their own dies, Odessa falls into a spiral of depression and turns to this vial to numb the pain which she carries on taking even after her body is healed and her friends try to pull her out of it once they realise that she’s abusing it and seeing things that aren’t actually there. Odessa is one of the best necromancers at navigating the Deadlands, so much that she has earned the nickname ‘Sparrow.’

We get introduced to Meredy who is Evander’s sister and she’s such a badass! She has a grizzly bear named Lysander and it’s super cool, if I was a part of this world I’d hope to be a beast tamer myself!

Depending on what eye colour you have determines what ability you have, so if you have Gray eyes, that’s weather mage, Green – Beast Tamer, Hazel – Healer, Brown – Inventor and Blue – Necromancers

“There’s nothing you can do, Valoria. I’m not one of your inventions. I’m broken, part of me is missing, and you can’t fix me with copper wires or a piece of string.” 

I really enjoyed this book, it’s filled with such raw emotions and the story is absolutely gripping! I haven’t read many fantasy books that revolve around necromancers and to be honest the only other necromancy book I’ve read is Give The Dark My Love by Beth Revis (which is also super amazing) and even then I don’t think that that one compares to this book!

I’m excited to be able to move on to Song of the Dead immediately!

Links to buy yourself a copy of this gorgeous book are below!

Amazon | Waterstones | Wordery | Book Depository | B&N | Blackwell’s| Hive

Title: Song of the Dead

Author: Sarah Glenn Marsh

Publisher: Razorbill

Published: 29th January 2019

My Edition: ARC (gifted by Penguin Random House International)

ISBN: 9781984836397

Series: Reign of the Fallen 2/2

My Rating: ★★★★★

Thank you Penguin Random House International for gifting me a ARC copy of this book to review!

The Dead must stay buried.

Karthia is nothing like it used to be. The kingdom’s borders are open for the first time in nearly three hundred years, and raising the dead has been outlawed. Odessa is determined to explore the world beyond Karthia’s waters, hoping to heal a heart broken in more ways than she can count. But with Meredy joining the ocean voyage, vanquishing her sorrow will be a difficult task.

Despite the daily reminder of the history they share, Odessa and Meredy are fascinated when their journey takes them to a land where the Dead rule the night and dragons roam the streets. Odessa can’t help being mesmerized by the new magic–and by the girl at her side. But just as she and Meredy are beginning to explore the new world, a terrifying development in Karthia summons them home at once.

Growing political unrest on top of threats from foreign invaders means Odessa and Meredy are thrust back into the lives they tried to leave behind while specters from their past haunt their tenuous relationship. Gathering a force big enough to ward off enemies seems impossible, until one of Queen Valoria’s mages creates a weapon that could make them invincible. As danger continues to mount inside the palace, Odessa fears that without the Dead, even the greatest invention won’t be enough to save their fates.

In this enthralling, heartrending sequel to Reign of the Fallen, Odessa faces the fight of her life as the boundaries between the Dead and the living are challenged in a way more gruesome than ever before. 

I’m just emotionally drained after reading this book, oh my gosh you guys ANNND I wrote notes for the first time whilst reading! I NEVER DO THIS! I wrote about 12 pages full of notes and feelings. Admittedly I think half of my notes are quite repetitive about Nipper and how much I love her…

I’ve been thinking for over a week about how to tackle this review, I managed Reign of the Fallen’s easily but this one was a little more difficult as I didn’t want to give away any spoilers whatsoever, so let’s get started.

Diving back into this world and to Odessa, we’re on board the Paradise making it’s first legal trip in broad daylight as the previous King had banned all travel to and from Karthia. Their first stop is Lyris, which is where Kasmira bought Odessa’s well loved coffee beans.

Odessa and Meredy travel around the market in Lyris and something is amiss. There is no dead to be seen, they come across a stall selling coats lined with fur to match the different shades of eyes of the mages however there is no blue and Odessa doesn’t understand why until they visit a pub and it becomes clear. The republic had outlawed Necromancers and all of their dead are buried. Odessa, Meredy, Kasmira and her crew are then forced to flee from Lyris as Odessa is not welcome and they then travel to their next location.

“I’m Odessa of Grenwyr.” I tug both daggers free of their sheaths, one for each hand. “And I bow to no man.”

Destination number two on their list is Sarral where the Paradise faces an unnatural storm when they’re close to arrival.

After a slight mishap when they arrive, Odessa is told that Necromancer’s are welcome and admired in Sarral but there are different rules. The day is for the Living whereas the night is for the Dead and their shades are called Witherlings.

Odessa makes a friend, Azelie who takes her to her Uncles dragon nursery (A DRAGON NURSERY YOU GUYS!!! DRAGONS!) Where Odessa meets Nipper and Nipper, must be protected at all costs. I absolutely love her, like she’s so adorable and I think she’s the star of this book #sorrynotsorry. Nipper needs her own book Sarah! Whilst Odessa and Kasmira’s crew are in a pub, Odessa overhears some distressing and urgent news about Karthia and Valoria and they all rush back to the Paradise and race back home.

Queen Valoria has been attacked and no one respects her rule. We’re introduced to many new characters, some are interesting and some suspicious, which is where the entire book gets real, my emotions were all of the place throughout this book and because I wrote notes for the first time, I had conspiracy theories written left and right about a certain suspicious character!

Throughout the book I was laughing, smiling, heartbroken and absolutelyDISTRAUGHT during a particular scene (around 300 odd pages in) I felt like I was watching Game of Thrones! However this book ended really well, it wrapped up nicely with a nice funny part BUT I would loveeeeee a third book in this series *hint hint Penguin Random House*

Links to buy yourself a copy of this gorgeous book are below!

Amazon | Wordery | Book Depository | B&N | Blackwell’s | Hive

Sarah Glenn Marsh writes young adult novels and children’s picture books.

She lives, writes, and paints things in Virginia, supported by her husband, four rescued greyhounds, three birds, and many fish.

If she could, she’d adopt ALL THE ANIMALS.

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