This Savage Song
By: Victoria Schwab
My Rating: 4/5 Stars
Genre: Dystopia, Fantasy
Page Count: 469
Synopsis: 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.
The first section of this review will be spoiler free.
This is one of those books that I had always seen in bookstores and on best seller lists, but for some reason every time I went to buy it I just changed my mind. I really should have listened to my gut and read this book a log time ago because it was a fantastic read! It was a really unique story (which in YA is always refreshing), and I liked that we weren’t told all the facts from the get go, but learned about the world as the story progressed. On the flip side this made things a little confusing at first, but it also added to the dark and twisted atmosphere the story was creating. Kate and August were very different characters, which is always good when you have a POV, it was nice to have such unique view points and backstories to draw on. There are still a ton of questions left unanswered at the end of this book, and I was a little sad to find out that the series is only a duology.
I really enjoyed the writing style and the dystopian landscape that Victoria created. The idea of monsters in this book was quite unique and fascinating. I don’t want to give too much away but let’s just say that they aren’t like other traditional monsters you usually find in books.
The fantasy level of this book is also pretty light, it is more dystopian than anything. If you aren’t usually into fantasy this might appeal to you, as it is mostly grounded in reality. The fantastical elements are the monsters, and even they are explained in a dystopian sense.
We learn at the beginning of the book that August is a Sunai, a type of monster who looks human but feeds on the souls of sinners (i.e. people who have killed or hurt others). He is sent to spy on Kate, the daughter of his adopted father’s rival, a man who controls monsters and charges people for their safety. Soon Kate and August begin to bond, and when someone tries to kill Kate August saves her. They end up working together and find out that August’s older brother (also a Sunai) was working with a monster under Kate’s father’s control to insight a war. I am really interested to see what the after effects of consuming his brother’s soul will do to August, and especially how he will cope with going dark again. Kate’s father is dead, but the mysterious monster that appeared at the end of this book, using Kate’s mother’s name is intriguing to say the least, I can’t wait to find out what book two has in store!