Title: Shadow Fall
Author: Audrey Grey
Pub. Date: April 20, 2020
My name is Maia Graystone: prisoner, rebel, and reluctant savior of a dying world.
In exactly 552 hours, an asteroid will end life as we know it. Not that I’m counting or anything. Trapped inside a hellish prison with thieves and murderers, I have more current worries.
Like the brother I left behind or the not-so-friendly inmates or the fact that I’m wanted by the most powerful man in existence.
Then a mysterious benefactor breaks me out and offers the impossible: a spot in the Shadow Trials. Win and I’ll receive a coveted place for my brother and I on the space station in the stars.
But the opportunity comes at a steep price. Partner with a dashing psychopath, enter the court that once condemned me to death, survive the ruthless trials created by my own mother, and kill the Emperor–the very man who’s hunting me.
In this cunning game of life and death, nothing is as it seems and everyone expects me to fail. But they forgot one tiny detail.
Never underestimate the girl with nothing left to lose.
This will be a spoiler free review. I listened to the audiobook and really enjoyed it. Heather Costa did a great job at bringing the characters to life.
I’ve been a fan of Audrey Grey since I read Our Dark Stars. Since then, I’ve started her Kingdom of Runes series, her Evermore Academy series, and now this series. I was instantly sold.
“Perfect for fans of Secondborn, The Hunger Games, and Maze Runner, this dark dystopian tale of survival, intrigue, and slow-burn romance will grip you until the very last page.”
I mean, give me a dystopian, enemies to lovers, slow burn romance book that has some Greek/Roman inspiration and a freaking doomsday count down? Hell yes. Give me more. If I had been reading it, instead of listening to it, I probably would have read it in one sitting, or stayed up all night. As it is, I can’t do that right now because of work, but I thoroughly enjoyed this book and I’m really excited for the next one.
I will say that the world was kind of confusing, I wish a little more time had been spent explaining it. Most of the time is spent with exploring Maya’s internal struggles – which is great – but the world felt lacking. Since Audrey clearly pulled from Greek and Roman mythology and sort of styled everything around that, I didn’t understand why it wasn’t more fleshed out. I also found the Everlasting War confusing and was trying to figure out if this was an Uglies situation where humanity basically wrecked itself into the ground and then had to start over.
I also didn’t understand the aversion and banning of tech, when tech is still used. I tried to ignore some of the issues I had with the world building and worked on just enjoying the book for everything it had to offer.
It pretty much gave me everything I want in a book. I love dystopian books, enemies to lovers is always a win, a world in peril and life and death trials…for those reasons alone, I loved this book. I just ultimately wanted a bit more.
I liked Maia and her struggle to figure out who she is, and her struggle to come to terms with what’s happened to her. She spends most of this book so confused and almost broken, but the moment she makes the choice – it’s so powerful.
I liked Riser – but I’m a sucker for tortured, slightly crazed characters. They’re always so interesting and fun. I really enjoyed the connection between him and Caspian, and how they kind of mirrored each other. It’ll be interesting to see how that plays out in the next two books.
“Dare to enter the gritty world of Shadow Fall where tyrants rule, misfits reign, and anti-heroes are tasked with saving the world. If you like enemies-to-lovers romance, high-octane action, and epic themes of good versus evil, you’ll binge this rollercoaster of emotions late into the night!”
This definitely felt reminiscent of The Hunger Games, but honestly, I’m not mad about it. If you’re looking for a book to just turn your brain off, get sucked into and just enjoy, I’d recommend it. It has some issues, but overall, it feeds into my need for SFF books, and more specifically, dystopian books. I need a resurgence of dystopian YA books. I liked this book and I’m definitely going to be finishing the series – or reading whatever is currently out – very soon, hell, probably next month. I’m hooked enough to need to know what’s going to happen next. The asteroid is getting closer and time is running out, and I need to see how it all ends.