Blog Tour & Review: Reign of the Fallen by Sarah Glenn Marsh
Reign of the Fallen by Sarah Glenn Marsh releases on January 23rd, and I am excited for this book to hit the shelves! If you are a fan of fantasy, I think you will devour this book! Today you will find all of the book information and my spoiler-free review! Check out the amazingly creative blogs that took this book on tour, schedule is at the end of the post! Thank you to Razorbill/Penguin Teen for providing me an advance copy of this book for review, and in doing so it did not influence my ratings or opinions on my review.
“This edgy fantasy doesn’t just blur boundaries of genre, of gender, of past and present, life and death–it explodes them.” –Cinda Williams Chima, New York Times bestselling author of The Seven Realms and The Shattered Realms
Without the dead, she’d be no one.
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 soul from a dreamy and dangerous shadow world called the Deadlands. But there is a cost to being raised: the Dead must remain shrouded. If even a hint of flesh is exposed, a grotesque transformation begins, turning the Dead into terrifying, bloodthirsty Shades.
A dramatic uptick in Shade attacks raises suspicions and fears around the kingdom. Soon, a crushing loss of one of her closest companions leaves Odessa shattered, and reveals a disturbing conspiracy in Karthia: Someone is intentionally creating Shades by tearing shrouds from the Dead–and training them to attack. Odessa is forced to contemplate a terrifying question: What if her magic is the weapon that brings the kingdom to its knees?
Fighting alongside her fellow mages–and a powerful girl as enthralling as she is infuriating–Odessa must untangle the gruesome plot to destroy Karthia before the Shades take everything she loves.
Reign of the Fallen is a unique dark fantasy full of magic, mystery, action, and fierce love. I tore through this book and I think anyone who loves fantasy will devour this book, and hopefully before the Shades devour you! You become enraptured in the unique world of Karthia, where gender equality is never in question, you can love whomever you want, and the dead have ruled for 200 years. Change is forbidden, but something needs to cause the revolution. One necromancer is willing to fight for balance and the people in her kingdom.
The book opens with death and action. Did I mention this is a dark fantasy? We meet Odessa, who is next in line to be a master necromancer to the royal family, who haven’t stopped ruling in 200 years, since they can be brought back from the dead. There is a small catch, if anyone part of the dead is un-shrouded, they will mutate into a dark creature called a Shade who will eat the living and the undead. Also, nothing is allowed to change, no progress, no building structures, no advancements or the undead will have displacement issues. On top of all that, there is someone plotting to destroy the world they know, even if it begs the hard question; should the dead stay dead?
Odessa is a well developed and absolutely relatable character. For me I could connect to her flaws, her sorrow, her fierceness to succeed, and her desire to love. She struggled with her grief which lead to addiction. The rest of the characters no matter their part, felt purposeful and established. I really loved Valoria for her nerdiness, and unabashed curiosity. She may be a princess but she wasn’t going to follow all the rules! Meredy was by far my favorite character, and I wished she was in the book more. I loved that she was an animal mage. All of the boys were also worthy, strong and necessary. Jax has snark for days, Simeon & Danial are a true pair, and Evander was stoic. The group of necromancers as a whole were close knit and full of flaws, yet super supportive of each other. They were like family.
I have to say that I thought sexuality was so well accounted for in this novel. It didn’t feel extraordinary, it didn’t feel forced, it didn’t feel anything but natural. HELL YEAH! The bisexual representation was very realistic and I really liked the way it was handled. I had a small issue, and it’s most likely just personal, and it is a spoiler, so I won’t be saying it here (but maybe I will add it to goodreads behind a spoiler tag). The feminism was also a stand out aspect. The woman were all treated equally by all the characters in the novel, never, not once did I feel pandering or bashing or anything of this nature. The woman mages were strong enough to kick ass! Gender equality isn’t even an issue, it is just the norm! Refreshing…and of course a fantasy.
Let’s talk about the romances. So much chemistry is jumping off these pages. Plus my emotions drifted up and down with the characters! The romance isn’t the main plot but at the same time it sparks off so many integral parts of the story. Odessa’s love was messy and realistic. She loves fiercely and it broke her, but she realized that her first love wasn’t the end for her. She could love again. And isn’t that the truth. We all get broken a few times in life, but it’s important to know that love isn’t singular.
Reign of the Fallen is a fast-paced and engaging read. The concept of and world is very engaging and I was so intrigued with this world that was begging for some change! Absolutely loved that gender equality was present throughout the book, as well as the fact that you can love whomever you want, but gods forbid, don’t change anything else! Reign of the Fallen is a must read for fantasy readers! It is feminist and truly kickass!
Sarah Glenn Marsh has been an avid fantasy reader from the day her dad handed her a copy of The Hobbit and promised it would change her life; she’s been making up words and worlds ever since. When she’s not writing, Sarah enjoys painting, ghost hunting, traveling, and all things nerdy.
She lives in Richmond, Virginia, with her husband and their menagerie: four rescued greyhounds, a bird, and many fish. She is the author of Fear the Drowning Deepand Reign of the Fallen.
January 8 – A New Look on Books – Interview
January 9 – YA Books Central – A List of “Top 5”
January 10 – The Fandom – “Meet the Characters” Breakdown with pictures
January 11 – Twinning for Books – Q&A
January 12 – Becca’s Book Realm – Q&A
January 15 – Reader Rewind – Mini Review and Q&A on Instagram Page
January 16 – The Quirky Book Nerd – Review
January 17 – Once Upon a Twilight – Review + Q&A
January 18 – BookCrushin – Review
January 19 – BigScreenBooks – Review
January 22 – The Novel Knight – Review
January 23 – Across the Word – Q&A
January 24 – The Lovely Books – Review
January 25 – Adventures in YA Publishing – Interview
January 26 – The Royal Polar Bear Reads – Author Interview Spot
January 29 – Tales of the Ravenous Reader – Review
January 30 – Good Choice Reading – Excerpt & Review
January 31 – Queership – Author Guest Post
February 1 – Megan Write Now – Interview
February 2 – The Life of a Booknerd Addict – Review
February 3 – Nocturnal Reads – Short Q&A