Children of Blood & Bone // A fast-paced YA fantasy

They killed my mother.
They took our magic.
They tried to bury us.

Now we rise.

Zélie Adebola remembers when the soil of Orïsha hummed with magic. Burners ignited flames, Tiders beckoned waves, and Zélie’s Reaper mother summoned forth souls.

But everything changed the night magic disappeared. Under the orders of a ruthless king, maji were killed, leaving Zélie without a mother and her people without hope.

Now Zélie has one chance to bring back magic and strike against the monarchy. With the help of a rogue princess, Zélie must outwit and outrun the crown prince, who is hell-bent on eradicating magic for good.

Danger lurks in Orïsha, where snow leoponaires prowl and vengeful spirits wait in the waters. Yet the greatest danger may be Zélie herself as she struggles to control her powers and her growing feelings for an enemy.

The Characters

I loved the main and supporting characters who are multidimensional, flawed and relatable. Kelie was bold, assertive, impulsive, and though she had her fears and doubts, she was courageous to face them head-on. She was passionate about her cause and not afraid to fight for what she believed in. By contrast, Amari was gentle, patient and even indecisive at times. However she was a fierce warrior who knew when to strike with her sword. I liked that both Kelie and Amari were strong female MCs- they were willful and independent, though they also had a soft and vulnerable side. Inan, the prince of Orisha, was the third POV character in this book. I liked that, in addition to being a love interest, he took on a morally grey role and had important character flaws which made him interesting to read about.

I also enjoyed reading about the relationships in this book- the romantic as well as the platonic ones. I loved the slow-burning chemistry in the romantic relationships. I also loved the sibling dynamics between Zelie and Tzain, and Amari and Inan. In addition I loved that there were strong and positive relationships between the female characters.

There were quite a few secondary and minor characters in the book, and unfortunately due to the circumstances in the plot, some of them did not survive. I wished to have gotten to know these characters better before they were killed off.

The Plot

The plot was engaging and well-paced. I liked that the characters were given a series of tasks to accomplish, and that with the resolution of one issue, another problem was always on the horizon, so that the plot continued rolling. 

I also liked the representation of people of colour in this series. I liked the idea of bringing attention to issues such as racism in a subtle way through the fantasy storytelling.

Usually I am not a huge fan of multi-POV books however I find that the 3 alternating POVs worked well here.

The Writing

Overall I enjoyed the writing style and I liked the worldbuilding aspect in this book. Descriptions were detailed but not overstated, and while I was reading I did feel immersed in the culture of the towns and cities the characters visited. I liked that Orisha had its own religion and politics as well, all of which were portrayed vividly in this book.

I also liked how people’s belief in the gods was linked to how magic worked. My only complaint was that I wished to learn more about the “rules” of magic- what was doable, what were the limits, and what were the consequences. Although the limits of “regular” magic vs “blood magic” was alluded to in this book, and there seemed to be consequences to using blood magic, I feel that these things weren’t too clear. 

The Bottom Line: 4/5 stars!

Overall The Children of Blood and Bone was a fast-paced YA fantasy novel with strong characters and great chemistry between them. After reading this book, I will definitely be looking out for book 2!

Have you read Children of Blood and Bone? If so, what are your thoughts? What are your favourite fantasy novels and/or worlds?

29 Replies to “Children of Blood & Bone // A fast-paced YA fantasy”

  1. Ah yay, I’m so happy you read and enjoyed that one Sophie! ❤ I was a bit nervous to read it, because of all the hype, but I ended up really liking it, too. I thought the characters were so great and interesting and three dimensional and I loved their relationships so much. I can't wait to read the next book! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh it’s been a while since I read this one but I can definitely remember really enjoying the world it was set in and how the author had developed the world in this first book. I’m really glad you enjoyed this one Sophie, I did love Children of Blood and Bone, and I completely agree with what you said about the individual characters and the sibling relationships we saw between Zelie and Tzain, and Amari and Inan but I couldn’t get behind the romance between Zelie and Inan. It felt too much like insta-love when it was first introduced and as that’s a trope I’m not a fan of it put me off. There’s promise there, based on the way this book ended I’m really interested to see how things play out for all the characters in the next book, but for me Children of Blood and Bone didn’t quite live up to it’s hype. 🙂
    Great review. 🙂 ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey Beth! Sorry to hear that this one didn’t live up to the hype for you, although that is good that it sounds like you’ve enjoyed it overall.
      Yes I see what you mean about Zelie and Inan. Of the two couples, Amari and Tzain’s relationship seemed to have a more natural progression 🙂
      What bugged me was that there were some minor characters who were killed off, and I couldn’t really sympathize with their deaths because I didn’t get to know them well :/

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yeah overall I still thought it was a great book, I think it was just too hyped up that it couldn’t live up in my mind. Exactly, I feel like it would have been better to stick with Amari and Tzain in this book and if there needed to be a relationship between Zelie and Inan develop it slowly over the course of the series. However many books that will be.
        Yeah I think I get what you mean, is it kind of like they were brought into the story solely to be killed off? That can kind of stop you from being attached to then, especially when their development isn’t great for that reason as well.
        That’s all right. 🙂 ❤️

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I think I can see what you mean about Zelie and Inan, since their relationship turned around very quickly and it would be easier to get to if this development happened slower.
        Yes I like it better when characters (even minor ones) stick around long enough for us to like them haha! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  3. So glad you enjoyed this book Sophie!! I loved this book so much too. Inan is indeed an interesting character and I can’t wait to read more about him in book 2. Amazing review love 💕

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I have heard good things about this book; it sounds exciting. I love a multicultural cast. Most fantasy I have read have MC’s who are either Caucasian or Middle Eastern. I did like though how in Kate Daniels’s world each monster she had to fight was from a different culture’s mythology. I look forward to reading one day Annette Marie’s Red Winter which features Japanese mythology.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Stefanie 🙂 yes I love the diverse cast in this book as well. Hope that you’ll have the chance to read this book one day.
      I haven’t read any of Kate Daniels’ books before, but sounds pretty cool how the monsters are from different mythologies 🙂


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