"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.
Perfect for fans of Three Dark Crowns and Red Queen, Reign of the Fallen is a gutsy, unpredictable read with a surprising and breathtaking LGBT romance at its core.
Marsh (Fear the Drowning Deep) takes readers on a journey through a grim world where magic is commonplace, the dead are regularly resurrected, and change has been outlawed by an undead king. Necromancers such as Odessa are beloved for their ability to reunite the living with dead loved ones, but the emergence of a powerful Shade one of the undead turned feral and bloodthirsty changes that. As more Shades manifest, necromancers are blamed, and it's up to Odessa to determine who is responsible. However, she is incapacitated by grief over the recent death of Evander, her love and fellow necromancer, as well as an addiction to a calming tonic that those close to her don't fully address until a virtual stranger intervenes. Between Odessa's rapid attraction to a female childhood friend who resurfaces and the murky reasons for change being outlawed, the pieces of Marsh's story don't entirely come together. But with a sexually fluid society, an intriguing land in which the living and the dead coexist, and an underworld reminiscent of Greek myths, Marsh's world is one readers will enjoy exploring. Ages 12 up.
I was hesitant to write this review, but this novel is absolute garbage. I bought it for a book club, wasted about five hours of my life on this book, and immediately quit the book club.
Seriously, readers, don’t waste your time on this. If you like “otherworldly” book plots read something like “The City of Ember”.