Monsters of Verity duology
This Savage Song & Our Dark Duet
By: Victoria Schwab
Genre: YA urban fantasy
Goodreads synopsis of This Savage Song:
There’s no such thing as safe in a city at war, a city overrun with monsters. In this dark urban fantasy from author Victoria Schwab, a young woman and a young man must choose whether to become heroes or villains—and friends or enemies—with the future of their home at stake. The first of two books.
Kate Harker and August Flynn are the heirs to a divided city—a city where the violence has begun to breed actual monsters. All Kate wants is to be as ruthless as her father, who lets the monsters roam free and makes the humans pay for his protection. All August wants is to be human, as good-hearted as his own father, to play a bigger role in protecting the innocent—but he’s one of the monsters. One who can steal a soul with a simple strain of music. When the chance arises to keep an eye on Kate, who’s just been kicked out of her sixth boarding school and returned home, August jumps at it. But Kate discovers August’s secret, and after a failed assassination attempt the pair must flee for their lives.
my spoiler-free review:
The Monsters of Verity duology by Victoria Schwab… where do I even start?! Victoria Schwab is a well-loved fantasy author in the YA and new adult community, but can you believe that this duology was the first books of hers that I had ever read?? This Savage Song and Our Dark Duet were INCREDIBLE. I loved them SO much, and I can’t recommend them enough!! 5/5 stars to both books in the duology!!!
This is a series review, meaning I’ll be reviewing both books together. It’s mainly because I’m too lazy to write too separate reviews, and my feelings for the books kind of run together at this point.
This duology takes place in a fantasy world where monsters are created from the darkest acts committed (murder being the main one). Our two main characters live in the city of Verity – Kate Harker is the daughter of the leader of one half of the city, and August Flynn is a monster who lives with the family that leads the other half of the city. And these two halves are always at odds. But, the two main characters are thrown together when something crazy happens, and they form the MOST AMAZING friendship.
Characters first, because I can’t not talk about them. I LOVE AUGUST AND KATE SO MUCH. Kate wears a stubborn, fiery façade, but on the inside, she just wants to be accepted and loved by her father. Instead, she finds that acceptance and love from August, and he really changes her for the better. Then there’s August, who is a monster and expected to do all these monstrous acts. But he just wants to be human. He loves to read and play his violin, and he’s so sweet. These books are told from both of their perspectives, and I loved reading from both of them!!!
One of my favorite side characters was Ilsa, August’s sister and fellow monster. She was so sweet and selfless (if you know the ending of Our Dark Duet, then you know why I say ‘selfless’), and she was just a light amongst all the darkness in Verity. Then we have Sloan, who’s the perfect villain for both books. His evil, twisted methods of conquering the city made my blood boil. Other amazing, notable characters include Henry and Emily Flynn, Soro, Collin, and Riley!
This world and the premise with the monsters formed from monstrous acts is genius. It was dark, twisted, terrifying, and thrilling to read about. I love the names of all the territories – Verity, Prosperity, Grace, Fortune, Valor, Fortitude, and Charity are 7 out of the Ten Territories. I guess this story would be urban fantasy, almost dystopian, because these Ten Territories are in different regions of the United States, 40 years after the fall of the country. The city of Verity was written so well that I could envision everything in my head. I felt like I was really there. And I LOVE being so immersed in a story that I feel like I’m actually there, walking alongside the characters.
Just like the world and the city of Verity, the plot was excellent! Dark, suspenseful, and full of surprises. The first book, This Savage Song, was less intense and contained less action and brutal scenes. It introduced the world and characters and established relationships in the first half, but the ending was insane, a preview to Our Dark Duet, which is full of action and suspense!! So much changed between the two books, because there’s a 6-month gap between the two, but it works so well!
I think I enjoyed Our Dark Duet more, but both absolutely blew me away. It took me longer to get through This Savage Song, but I think that’s because, in Our Dark Duet, there’s a lot more at stake for the future of Verity, and I was on the edge of my seat the entire time.
And THAT ENDING. I sobbed SO HARD at the ending of the duology. I don’t think I’ll ever fully recover from it. The thing that happens is something SO unexpected – it’s one of those things that if I can ever accomplish that as a writer, I will be so proud of myself. I’m obviously not going to spoil anything here, but if you’ve read it, you know the heart-wrenching scene that I’m talking about.
Victoria Schwab’s writing is beautiful. I’m obsessed with her storytelling, so her other books are now very high on my TBR! If you’ve read any of her books, please let me know which one is your favorite and which one I should read next!
After reading the Monsters of Verity duology, I immediately made space on one of my shelves that house my favorite novels. I know that this series will be one that I reread in the future and one that I will never forget!!
I hope you enjoyed today’s bookish babblings, and happy reading!
Victoria Schwab’s website: https://veschwab.wordpress.com/