Title: This Savage Song (Book #1)
Series: Monsters of Verity
Author: Victoria Schwab
Genre: YA, Paranormal
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Synopsis from Goodreads:
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 Schwab, a 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.
I buddy read this with my friend Lilly over at Lair of Books (check out her amazing blog)! We both had quite a ride with this book and I think neither of us can put it down. It’s just that good!! Before I get into this review I want to thank her for giving me music to listen while reading this. I placed on repeat Dark Violin Songs by Max Ablitzer
My Initial Thoughts After I Finished:
Seriously, I had to rush over Tumblr to get some sort of closure after I finished TSS. That ending had me like woah.
In This Savage Song we follow two characters Kate (human) and August (monster), their stories are told in third person which I enjoyed because although we follow their individual stories, we get told their mindset and their surroundings.
The first 50 pages were slow which I feel like is typical in Schwab fashion. However, there was building, getting to know this world that’s divided (literally, there’s a truce so you either live here or there) and getting to know the characters. Everything is so dark here, from the world to the characters to the cat.
My feelings on Kate:
(but I ended up really liking her character)
My feelings on August:
*whisper* my precious child
Sometimes the real monsters are humans and the people who are supposed to have your back, don’t. Kate trying to please her father by doing all these horrible things and August who tries to hide his monstrous ways by acting human.
I loved that we get tons of building here, nothing was rushed, and the action was on point. We have three different types of monsters in this book: Corsai, Malchai, and Sunai. The author described each one through a song:
“Corsai, Corsai, tooth and claw,
Shadow and bone will eat you raw.
Malchai, Malchai, sharp and sly.
Smile and bite and drink you dry.
Sunai, Sunai, eyes like coal,
Sing you a song and steal your soul.
Monsters, monsters, big and small,
They’re gonna come and eat you all.”
Everything takes place in Verity; North City that Kate’s father, Callum Harker runs and South City that August adopted father, Henry Flynn runs. You want protection from the monsters? Then you pretty much have to sell your soul to Harker for protection. And selling your soul always comes with consequences. The truce that’s between Harker and Flynn is about to break and a lot of stuff start spiraling out of control. We see all of this happening within this book.
I loved the writing. Have you read Schwab? She writes in this dark way that captivates you and she writes these characters with such raw personalities. Each character, even some of the side characters have an individual story to tell and I thought that was great.
My all time favorite side character that I absolutely love and would love even more if we had a book just for her is Isla. I felt like I connected with her so much.
Photo credit here
The plot has tons of suspense and thriller aspects in it that include monsters and humans. Following Kate and August, we also follow their fathers and what they really stand by at the end of the day. Callum Harker is just a selfish man who does what he needs to do for his own benefit, meanwhile Henry Flynn just wants peace and safety for everyone including the monsters. Although not all monsters can be saved due to their nature.
We see Kate and August both struggle with themselves and also struggle between right and wrong, good and evil, light and darkness.
I love that the author didn’t add romance here because it was not needed at all. It wouldn’t have added to the story, if anything, romance would’ve taken away from the greatness of this dark world. I definitely recommend this!!
Photo credit here