2020 Reading Challenge

2020 Reading Challenge
Jill Elizabeth has read 6 books toward her goal of 240 books.

Book Review: Legendary by Stephanie Garber

“Don’t be like me and settle for the ease of an almost-ending, when you could have the true ending.”
“I’m not sure I understand what that even means,” Tella said.
“It means most people give up at the part of the story where things are the worse, where the situation feels hopeless. But that’s when hope is needed most.”

Oh. My. Goodness…

I LOVE this series – Garber has created such an original, magical, horrifyingly off-kilter world, and populated it with a cast of characters that is truly unique and wildly inventive. She has the perfect writing style for this type of story – clear and concise, but with just enough detail to bring the world she’s created into Technicolor glory. She is also terribly witty, and there are a number of one-liners that are offered as throwaways, but that often steal the scene. Garber plays with language and imagery the way that Legend plays with people, and the result in both instances is delightfully dark and deliciously funny.

I enjoyed the introduction of the Fates as an entirely new set of players, because they offer so many opportunities for intrigue. But I also really enjoyed the deepening of Legend’s character- he’s still an enigma wrapped in a riddle, but for very different reasons (as a result of several reveals in this book), and it’s fantastically unclear – STILL – whether he’s the hero or the villain of the piece…

It’s that type of moral ambiguity that I think makes the characters in this series so marvelous – they have a depth and breadth, a psychological heft if you will, that ebbs and flows like the tides and leaves you a little uncertain where they stand at all times. It makes every page a thrill, because it is almost impossible to guess when they will zig and when they will zag – or when they’ll decide to go with neither and instead stop for coffee… It keeps you off-kilter, right along with Scarlett and Tella, and that’s a fun place to be when you don’t have to worry about paying the consequences like they do!

He tasted like exquisite nightmares and stolen dreams, like the wings of fallen angels, and bottles of fresh moonlight.

He was like a moment in time; he could be experienced but never held on to.

I really enjoyed that this book was written from Tella’s perspective (as opposed to Scarlett’s, who is the focus of Book One) – it was interesting to step inside her head and get a better sense of who she is and why she behaves as she does. The two sisters are wildly different on the surface, but as more about their lives and histories is revealed, I’m starting to see more core similarities too – in intriguing, resonant ways that I suspect will shape the stories that unfold going forward. I’m curious to reread the first book now, and see if it colors my interpretation of her actions (I suspect it will)…

Speaking of which, I’m also insanely curious to see what comes next… There’s no way Garber can stop writing in this series now, there are too many loose ends and possibilities laid out at the end of this one. Which is a Very Good Thing, because a world like this deserves more than two visits!

My review copy was provided by NetGalley.

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