Reign of Shadows review

4th October 2016
Book Review / 2 Comments

Reign of Shadows reviewReign of Shadows by Sophie Jordan
Series: Reign of Shadows, #1
Published by HarperTeen on February 9th 2016
Genres: Fairytale Retelling, Fantasy, Young Adult
Also in this series: Rise of Fire
Also by this author: Rise of Fire
Amazon | The Book Depository

Seventeen years ago, an eclipse cloaked the kingdom of Relhok in perpetual darkness. In the chaos, an evil chancellor murdered the king and queen and seized their throne. Luna, Relhok’s lost princess, has been hiding in a tower ever since. Luna’s survival depends on the world believing she is dead.

But that doesn’t stop Luna from wanting more. When she meets Fowler, a mysterious archer braving the woods outside her tower, Luna is drawn to him despite the risk. When the tower is attacked, Luna and Fowler escape together. But this world of darkness is more treacherous than Luna ever realized.

With every threat stacked against them, Luna and Fowler find solace in each other. But with secrets still unspoken between them, falling in love might be their most dangerous journey yet.

Reign of Shadows (Reign of Shadows, #1) by Sophie Jordan book review >> Simply Adrift

Reign of Shadows blew me away. I highly enjoyed this book! It was such an interesting concept, the main character being blind in a world full of danger. It was thrilling and exciting.

The Concept

When I went into Reign of Shadows I had no idea how Jordan was going to pull off a character as blind. I wasn’t sure if I was going to enjoy this story because I couldn’t yet understand how the reader would be able to see the world if the main character couldn’t actually see it herself. I was really going to need to rely on the author’s writing ability for this one. And then on top of that, this story is a fantasy set in a world where daylight is sparse, and monsters rule the darkness. It sounded so intriguing.

Luna & her blindness

The way Jordan writes the world as how Luna sees was interesting, how Luna could hear far away and could tell what the sound was whether it was a person walking through the woods, or the dark dwellers rising from the ground. I thought that was so cool, a little unbelievable, but I decided to let me suspense of belief stretch that far.

Luna can fight, she can defend herself, even though she can’t see. She uses her hearing and also the feel of air pressure. As of course when something moves the air around it also moves. I loved this idea and understood how Luna could see so much without actually seeing. The way Jordan described the world filled my mind with images I could understand, I loved that, although there were moments when I would think ‘How can Luna describe something like that when she hasn’t seen it before?’.

Luna was able to walk the terrain with no problem. Now this would have been fine if Luna had actually been outside of her tower more often. But Luna was confined to her tower  for most of her life with only a few times having left it. Personally, I found this unbelievable that she was then able to walk the terrain fine with Fowler. Even if she could hear him in front of her and hear the way he moved, it felt a little impossible for her to perfectly be able to do that.

Her sense’s were heightened because of her blindness, but at times I felt like I had to really stretch my suspense of belief to believe her senses were just that good. It was as if she had superpower sense’s, and who knows, maybe that’s exactly what she has. Maybe when she was born she was given the gift of super sense and her sight was taken away.

The Romance

Fowler is a moody, bad boy character. He has a sad past and refuses to let anyone in. The way he treats Luna at the beginning is really frustrating, Luna tries to befriend him by talking non-stop since he refuses to answer her questions. Luna starts to like Fowler a little too early for my liking, it felt a bit like she fell for him simply because he was the first person she had met other than her family. The connection was Luna’s pure wanting to have interaction with other people and he was the first one.

By the end though I was shipping it, I was enjoying their scenes together.

The Inconsistencies

I did notice throughout the book that I felt like there were a few inconsistencies. Luna would be intelligent and strong and brave at the start but then during the middle she was acting like a terrified little girl. I remember wondering where had the strong woman from the beginning of the book gone? She suddenly forgot how to fight and so all she did was flee. It was rather jarring.


Overall, I actually really, really enjoyed Reign of Shadows. I did have to stretch my suspense of belief rather far at points, and there were moments that annoyed me with how Luna was acting or her personality had changed. And there were small things that I didn’t like. But overall, I really fell in love with the story as it was. A story about a journey and survival.

The ending was a bit of a cliffhanger so I really want to know what happens next!


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