I. Love. This. Book.
That was what my brain was doing the whole time I was reading.
So where do I even start?!
First, the characters. All three main characters were great. Lyre was flirty and playful but also ridiculously lovable and kind. Ash was mysterious and dangerous but also loyal and protective. Piper was kickass and intelligent but also emotionally vulnerable and forgiving. They were three-dimensional, all unique from each other, and it made for a really interesting team and dynamic between characters. I also loved, loved, LOVED Ash’s daemon form and the way the whole concept of shading played into the story. Ok, I really just loved everything about Ash and his terrifying, brooding, dangerous, yet oh-so-full-of-goodness ways, but I’ll let you get to know him yourself!
And the plot? PERFECT! It flowed so organically, never forced. The obstacles and problems that continued to spring up were not sheer coincidence or the outcome of ridiculous, too-stupid-to-live decisions. Also, there was a clear goal from the beginning, something I love because I like to know where my stories are headed instead of feeling like I’m aimlessly wandering. To top it all off, it completely engaged me to the point that I was clutching at my shirt, pausing at certain parts just to take a breath, and laughing out loud.
And the writing style! I have to talk about the writing style because I was so in love. I’m big on the whole highlighting thing when I read on my kindle, but I found myself wanting to highlight entire pages because it was all so beautifully written that I couldn’t even choose one line or figure out where to stop.
Also, technically, this book is YA, but I didn’t get that stereotypical YA vibe at all. Piper was actually mature with the ability to make GOOD decisions and to not sit around being self-deprecating the way characters often do in YA.
My review has gotten ridiculously long, and this book is never going to live up to anyone’s expectations after reading this, but I just loved it too much to rein in my excitement. I didn’t even hesitate to immediately buy an ebook copy after renting it from Amazon Prime and then the paperback later on.
I think on some subconscious level I’ve made it my personal mission in life to make this series more well-known because I recommend it every chance I get, even to strangers. This was an unbelievably amazing start to a series that I recommend to everyone who likes fantasy (and maybe even those who don’t)!
More Books in the Series:
Book Review: Chase the Dark (Steel & Stone Book 1) by Annette Marie
Book Review: Bind the Soul (Steel & Stone Book 2) by Annette Marie
Book Review: Yield the Night (Steel & Stone Book 3) by Annette Marie
Short Story Review: Feed the Flames (Steel & Stone Book 3.5) by Annette Marie
Book Review: Reap the Shadows (Steel & Stone Book 4) by Annette Marie
Book Review: Unleash the Storm (Steel & Stone Book 5) by Annette Marie
Book Author: Annette Marie
Publisher: Self Published
Series: Steel & Stone
Genre: Fantasy, Paranormal/Urban Fantasy, Young Adult
My Book Rating: 5
Series/Standalone: Part of a Series
Setting Location: USA