Odessa, also known as Sparrow, is a necromancer. Her ability to traverse the Deadlands earned her the title, making her the King’s prized necromancer. When some of the Dead go missing, and monstrous Shades are becoming more common, Odessa and her friends must look into who or what could be causing this.
Why this book?: Queer necromancers. Fight me.
I would like to thank Brittany @ Brittany Book Rambles for sending me an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
I have to admit, the reason I wanted to read this book was because I heard it had bisexual representation, as well as necromancy. It was a combination of those two that really drew me to this book, because, well, there’s never enough books about queer necromancers in this world. I was a little hesitant though, because it was one of those books that people were hyping up, but not much information was being spread besides it being good and about necromancy. I honestly didn’t even know that it had a main sapphic romance until I outright asked.
Reign of the Fallen starts of quickly, catching your interest and then shoving you face first into the dangers of the world, and of being a necromancer. It was an intense beginning, one that I wasn’t expecting, and I just couldn’t stop reading. The magic system was so interesting, and I hope that in the later books we get to learn more about them, because we only get to know so much about certain magics.
Something that really surprised me was the intensity of the book as you read it. It’s not just a fantasy book. It’s a book about grief and addiction, but the way is what makes it so intense. As it’s told in first person, you get the narration from someone who doesn’t believe that they’re addicted. Doesn’t think their grief is that bad. The denial and manipulation that Marsh imbues in this story is what makes the story so intense–because you’re being told it’s not addiction, but anyone who has any experience with addiction knows that it is.
While I am not personally bisexual, I did want to say I really enjoyed the representation. Not only is the romance established in the beginning, but it’s also a lesser seen M/F romance with a bi MC. It was really refreshing to see, because a lot of people don’t see M/F romances as queer, even if one or both are bi/pan.
Final Rating: ★★★★★
My interest in this book paid out, because I ended up getting a powerful and interesting book without even thinking about it. I went in expecting necromancy, and I got that, and more. I got necromancy, and queer characters, and intense emotion, and action. I am eagerly awaiting book 2.
Would I Recommend?
Yes, but with heavy warnings. There is heavy addiction in this book, as well as grief from the death of loved ones, and even a lot of drunkenness. If you’re able to handle that, than I highly recommend this novel.
Published: January 23rd, 2018
Page Count: 384
Synopsis: via Goodreads
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 souls from a dreamy and dangerous shadow world called the Deadlands. But there is a cost to being raised–the Dead must remain shrouded, or risk transforming into zombie-like monsters known as Shades. If even a hint of flesh is exposed, the grotesque transformation will begin.
A dramatic uptick in Shade attacks raises suspicions and fears among Odessa’s necromancer community. Soon a crushing loss of one of their own reveals a disturbing conspiracy: someone is intentionally creating Shades by tearing shrouds from the Dead–and training them to attack. Odessa is faced with a terrifying question: What if her necromancer’s magic is the weapon that brings Karthia to its knees?