4-star · Book Reviews · Series

Book Review: This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab

Title: This Savage Song (Monsters of Verity #1)
Author:Victoria Schwab
PubDate: July 5, 2016
Page count: 464

“That’s life, August,” she said. “You wanted to feel alive, right? It doesn’t matter if you’re monster or human. Living hurts.”

It’s official. Victoria Schwab is my new favorite author! TSS is as brilliant as ADSoM and AGoS and now I’m in love with a monster! But of course, Kell is still my #1!

This book has gripped me from the first page until the very last that I didn’t want to put it down when I had to but too bad I had to sleep! This world Schwab has created with monsters and human-who-act-like-monsters is so engaging and engrossing that it will keep you up all night thinking about the real monsters out there. There isn’t much in the world-building but the characters and the writing style, oh my god the writing style, are both amazing!

The story basically revolves around Kate Harker and August Flynn who found themselves saving each other as the war between their families escalates. Kate is the daughter of Callum Harker, the horrendous leader who controls the north side of Verity and the monsters, and all Kate wanted is to be like him. She wants to be powerful, ruthless and feared not only by humans but also by monsters. She finds herself doing horrible things just to prove her father that she can also do what he can. August, on the other hand, wants to be human. He’s a Sunai, a monster who feeds on the soul of the sinners, and Henry Flynn, leader of the south, took him in together with two other Sunai, Leo and Ilsa. Despite being a monster, August doesn’t act like one unlike his brother Leo who embraces his nature.

In the north, Harker controls the monsters and people have to pay for his protection so that monsters won’t harm them. In the south, Flynn protects the people by hunting down the monsters. The two have a peace agreement and as long as neither break the promise, a war won’t happen. But the agreement could only last long for the monsters also want to own the city now. And what a perfect way to break the truce when Kate is presumed missing and August is the main suspect.

I really enjoyed this book but I have to admit that the monsters in this book scared me a bit. I was imagining Sloan and oh my god he is frightening! I didn’t want to imagine the Corsai anymore but everytime I see a shadow they come to mind. And this is the reason I don’t read horror!

“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.”

The characters are well-rounded and though I kinda didn’t like Kate’s character at first, I came to understand where she’s coming from later on. She wants to be like her father because she knew there’s no place for weak people in their world. You must be powerful, ruthless and act just like a monster if you want the monsters to fear you and not the  other way other. And since her father has proven his ruthlessness long ago, Kate realized that it’s her turn to prove that she’s a real Harker just like her father. But while Kate wants to be a monster like her father, August wants the opposite. He doesn’t want to steal souls, doesn’t want to scare people. He just wants to be like them. To be normal.

“Kate,” he said with a sob. “I can’t keep going toward the edge―don’t let me fall.” His breath hitched. “I can’t I can’t do it again I can’t go dark again I’m holding on to very little piece and if I let go I can’t get them back I don’t want to disappear―”
“Okay, August,” she said, trying to keep her voice calm and even. “I won’t let you fall.”

I loved August’s character right away and though he felt a bit cliche (a monster wanting to be human) he isn’t hard to love. He genuinely wants to be different, to protect the innocents, to be able to do what’s right. And the moment I found out that he’s a monster who wants to be good, I was sold! Because I already knew what happens next.

He could be the monster, if that kept others human.

I know I would’ve loved it even more if there’s romance between Kate and August (I know, I know, but  what can I do when I’m a sucker for romance?!) but somehow I wasn’t disappointed that there isn’t any in this book. Actually, I liked that they started off having negative/wrong ideas about each other and then eventually worked their way from there, trying to keep each other alive. And I have a feeling that there’s a great chance we’ll see a progress in Kate and August’s relationship in the next book! Haha 😛

Anyway, aside from the characters, Schwab’s writing wowed me. It’s like she writes and words just start to form beautifully! She has a way of threading characters and telling story and how I wish I could write like her. It’s only my third book of hers but like I said, she’s my new favorite author and I would love to read more of her works. And maybe I’ll read Vicious next!

But while I loved the characters, plot and the writing style, I feel like it lacks something in the world-building. And that’s the reason for a minus half-star. I guess I was waiting to see a more vivid Verity, the world where monsters are born whenever people commit a violent act. Aside from that, this book is amazing! It’s action-packed, fast-paced and the monsters will keep you awake.

* * *

“Are you all right?” he asked.
His voice was still distant, but there was something in it. A sliver of concern. Kate let out a ragged breath. She looked down at herself, her torn sweater and bloodied hands. “I’m alive.”
A tired smile flickered across his face. “Well,” he said, “that’s a start.”

3 thoughts on “Book Review: This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab

  1. Pingback: Quotes & Lines #30

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