Thursday, April 26, 2012

Mini-Review: The Book of Blood and Shadow by Robin Wasserman

The Book of Blood and Shadow
Robin Wasserman
April 10th, 2012
448 pages (hardcover)
Publisher - Random House
Source - Netgalley
...When the night began, Nora had two best friends and an embarrassingly storybook one true love. When it ended, she had nothing but blood on her hands and an echoing scream that stopped only when the tranquilizers pierced her veins and left her in the merciful dark.

But the next morning, it was all still true: Chris was dead. His girlfriend Adriane, Nora’s best friend, was catatonic. And Max, Nora’s sweet, smart, soft-spoken Prince Charming, was gone. He was also—according to the police, according to her parents, according to everyone—a murderer.

Desperate to prove his innocence, Nora follows the trail of blood, no matter where it leads. It ultimately brings her to the ancient streets of Prague, where she is drawn into a dark web of secret societies and shadowy conspirators, all driven by a mad desire to possess something that might not even exist. For buried in a centuries-old manuscript is the secret to ultimate knowledge and communion with the divine; it is said that he who controls the Lumen Dei controls the world. Unbeknownst to her, Nora now holds the crucial key to unlocking its secrets. Her night of blood is just one piece in a puzzle that spans continents and centuries. Solving it may be the only way she can save her own life.
The Book of Blood and Shadow rightly deserves to be referred to as The DaVinci Code for YA literature. It's smart, entertaining, and wonderfully written. Wasserman takes her time to build Nora's character (along with Adriane, Chris, Max, and eventually, Eli). When the story truly begins, you cannot help but to root for Nora and admire her tenacity as she delves deeper into the mystery at hand. Every letter leads to another exciting clue, as well as to more danger for the characters involved. If you love a good mystery with plenty of surprises, then definitely check this novel out. 

Highlights: The Book of Blood and Shadow captivated me from start to finish. Once the mysteries began, the intensity never let up. The best compliment I can pay this story is that everything felt real - the mystery and history, the clues, the emotions, the characters, and the settings. There's fun banter between characters. I enjoyed having a narrator with an exceptional vocabulary. Also, the surprises and twists! 

Lowlights: For the first half, this story feels like a very long book. I wish some parts had been shortened a bit. Also, the summary makes you think that Chris is dead when the book begins - but he's actually alive for quite some time, so I felt like that was misleading and frustrating (since I knew what was coming). 



Image + Summary from Goodreads


  1. This sounds like a book I'll enjoy. I just got it from the library and I think I'll move it up my TBR pile. I am not a huge fan of The Da Vinci Code though I did like Angels and Demons and other similar books.

    Thanks for your review! I'm glad you liked the book so much.

  2. Glad you overall enjoyed this one Lea :) !! This one is in my To-Buy list and I can't wait to read it .. I love when the characters feel real because they are way more easy to connect with !! Thanks for the great review =)

  3. I've never had an interest in reading The Da Vinci code so a YA version appeals to me. The only this is, I don't have much patience for slow pacing in the beginning so that it feels like it's taking long to read the book. That might deter me some. Still, this book sounds exciting with all of it's awesome historical elements and Nora's character!

  4. The author spends a great deal of time building her world and the relationships within it, which does make the first half seem longer...then it's go-go-go after that!

  5. I'm glad to hear you liked it so much--I'm definitely excited to pick it up. That sucks it's a bit misleading though... :/ Great review!

  6. Great review! I thought the same thing about Chris and kept thinking that he's such a great guy but will die soon.

  7. Yay for fun banter! Love that:) Good to know about the first half though, I like being aware of things like that upfront! Looking forward to reading this one Lea:)

  8. I love Dan Brown books, if this is anything like the Davinci Code, I'll be reading it soon. I don't mind slow beginnings that much, as long as the ending is worth it. Thanx for the post, Lea

  9. I loved this book so, soooo much. It was so intense and completely unique! Great review!

  10. I love Dan Brown's books, so this sounds like my cup of tea :D