TITLE: Song of the Dead
AUTHOR: Sarah Glenn Marsh
SERIES: Reign of the Fallen, #2
RELEASES: January 29th, 2019; Razorbill
AGE RANGE: YA
Karthia has changed, and the people are changing with it—for better and for worse. Odessa has set out on an oceanic journey with Meredy and Kasmira, but nothing can prepare them for the war they’ll find brewing over the open waters, or the destruction they’ll return home to when Valoria’s new queendom is threatened by the people her family has ruled over and protected. Can Karthia and her necromancers adapt to the changing times, or will they be destroyed?
I think we all know by now how much I adored Reign of the Fallen—I mean, two of my favorite things in the world are own-voice bi rep and necromancy—so I was beside myself over how freaking excited I was for the release of this sequel. And when I say “beside myself”, what I mean is that when the author asked if she could put me in her acknowledgements, and then offered me one of the first print ARCs she received, I literally cried. Both times. No shame. I adore this series and author so much. ANYWAYS, on to the review, right?
“I’m Odessa of Grenwyr.” I tug both my daggers free of their sheaths, one for each hand. “And I bow to no man.”
I mean, I love everything about this, but most of all, I love the continuation of the world-building and the amazing crew of characters. Odessa was a badass in the first book, but now? She oozes strength and self-assurance. There were a few times where I literally was over here like the cheesy 90s kid I am, saying “you GO girl!” out loud. Again, no shame. There’s also Meredy, who is so flawed but incredibly lovable, and Kasmira, who I could spend chapters upon chapters with, and Valoria, and Jax, and Si, and Danial, and… ugh, my babies. ?? I love them all so much.
I can’t get consumed by memories of him, losing everything and everyone else that I love. Never again.
You know what’s even better than great characters, though? Awesome animal sidekicks. I’ve made it pretty known that I was obsessed with Lysander, Meredy’s bear companion in the first book, but Song introduces a freaking baby dragon named Nipper who I lost my senses over at least once a chapter. I mean, she is WONDERFUL and she has these amazing little abilities and she’s literally the perfect necromancer sidekick and I want eight little Nippers of my own.
I could never outrun myself. Without the pin, without even my name, I’d still be a fighter. I’d still be a commander of the dead. I’d still be a girl too in love with life to commit to death, even when it’s calling to me more strongly than ever before.
Finally, the story here? Flawless. I mean, they could have gone grocery shopping and I’d still have loved it because I just love the characters so much, but the plot here is so suspenseful and perfectly closes up the first book while introducing a brand new conflict and set of obstacles. I couldn’t put it down and was constantly on the edge of my seat.
It’s safe to say I literally don’t have a single complaint about this gorgeous sequel, and would basically sign over my soul (if I had one) to get a third and fourth and eighth and twelfth book from this series. ♥ Sarah is a brilliant storyteller and, even if we never get to spend another few hundred pages with Odessa and her crew, I’ll still be delighted to see whatever Sarah comes up with next.
Everyone! If you enjoy fantasy stories, complex and flawed-but-wonderful characters, suspense, conflicts, necromancy, gorgeously normalized queer rep, and all-around incredible plots and characters, please pick yourself up a copy of Reign of the Fallen and Song of the Dead immediately!
All quotes come from an advance copy and may not match the final release. Thank you so much to Sarah Glenn Marsh for providing me with this ARC in exchange for an honest review!
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