Circle of Shadows by Evelyn Skye

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Circle of Shadows by Evelyn Skye
Series: Circle of Shadows #1
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Published January 22nd 2019
Genres: YA, Fantasy
Pages: 454
Format: Hardback
Buy: Book Depository | Amazon

A thrilling new fantasy series full of magic and betrayal—from Evelyn Skye, New York Times bestselling author of the Crown’s Game series.

Sora can move as silently as a ghost and hurl throwing stars with lethal accuracy. Her gemina, Daemon, can win any physical fight blindfolded and with an arm tied around his back. They are apprentice warriors of the Society of Taigas—marked by the gods to be trained in magic and the fighting arts to protect the kingdom of Kichona.

As their graduation approaches, Sora and Daemon look forward to proving themselves worthy of belonging in the elite group—but in a kingdom free of violence since the Blood Rift Rebellion many years ago, it’s been difficult to make their mark.

So when Sora and Daemon encounter a strange camp of mysterious soldiers while on a standard scouting mission, they decide the only thing to do to help their kingdom is to infiltrate the group. Taking this risk will change Sora’s life forever—and lead her on a mission of deception that may fool everyone she’s ever loved.

Love, spies, and adventure abound as Sora and Daemon unravel a complex web of magic and secrets that might tear them—and the entire kingdom—apart forever.

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This was my first book by the author and I absolutely love the world. I’m a huge fan of magic and this one had a super interesting concept!

So basically, long story short, Sora and Daemon are apprentice warriors of the Society of Taigas as well as geminas (a type of bond). They were marked by the gods to protect the kingdom of Kichona. They use fighting skills a bit like samurais but they also have a certain type of magic at their disposal. Everything in the kingdom seems to be well until they encounter a strange camp of mysterious soldiers. They take a risk by checking it out on their own and what they learn will change their lives and the kingdom forever.

The best thing about this book, for me, was our main group of friends. I really liked all of them. Spirit, Wolf, Fairy, and Broomstick. They were totally awesome! I loved their friendship dynamics and the Gemina bonds, which I guess is a bit like a parabatai? I really liked how different they were and how well they came together as a team. They each have a set of skills that is needed and I loved learning about it. I would have loved to learn more about them in a bit more depth tho. I think they have a lot of potential but we only got a bit of their story.

The magic in the world was incredibly cool, and it totally made my imagination run. It’s such an interesting concept! Especially the ryuu’s. But I do have quite many doubts too… I guess the world could have been better explained and by that, the magic would have been too. But it was, for me, still incredible and I was addicted to it. I love surprising magic and there are quite some interesting bits in here. A bit like Avatar style but on a larger scale… Some can control the air, for example, but others can control bugs, which is even more unique – even tho creepy.

What I didn’t like tho, was that we got another one of my least favorites… An unnecessary, unrequired, and technically impossible romance. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve read of those… I’m just a bit done with it, but sometimes it surprises and manages to work. In here, it didn’t. It started right from the start and I didn’t even know the characters well and already knew about this stupid unnecessary love situation. It really annoyed me because it could have focused more on friendship instead of adding this… And if a romance was actually what the author was going for, I would have preferred it a bit later in the story… But like I said, individually, and in terms of friendship, I was a total fan of the characters tho…

Also, this book seemed unnecessarily way too big to me. For the number of pages, I hoped it to be more developed than it was. It was slow and it took a long time to move forward, which made it less gripping than I was hoping. I still wanted to know what was going to happen because I loved the characters but, it could have been more compact…

The premise of the book is, in my opinion, amazing, and I did love quite some things about it, but I would have changed some stuff for sure. In other words, I enjoyed it, but it didn’t grip me and I’m a bit disappointed in that because the idea is just fantastic…

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Have you read this book? What did you think of it? Let’s discuss it in the comments below!

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