When I first saw the synopsis of And I Darken, I was like…
After all- a ruthless princess? A brother versus sister battle for the true definition of home? A slight genderbend of Vlad the Impaler? YES PLEASE!
Then, when I saw the cover, I was like…
I know that you’re not supposed to judge a book by its’ cover, but come on- we all do it occasionally. It’s not just me- right? Right?
Anyway, I know you’re here to actually read my review, not my rambles, so I won’t keep you waiting any longer.
And I Darken is one long book. I say this because it’s NOT a “sit down and read it all at once” type of book. I originally thought that I’d fly through it, like I do with most books that I love, but nope. This is one book that you’re going to be devouring for a while. Since I was on vacation while reading And I Darken, it took me 3 days! (It actually ended up being around 2-3hrs between the 3 days, but the timing was split). Oh no I’m back to rambling!!!
Let me break down why this book was so awesome.
Each character was like a snowflake- they were all extremely unique. I never had an issue with telling apart the characters- they didn’t blend together whatsoever. The main characters were a brother and sister, and then throughout the book there were a couple of characters that turned from side characters into main characters. It was quite an interesting dynamic to see. I loved how the girl was the badass, and the guy was the polite eavesdropper.
I already noted that the brother sister duo was entertaining to read about because it defied traditional gender roles, but it wasn’t just that the characters in that particular family that stood out to me. Almost every family I came across had something unique that really made me connect with them. With so many different families with different connections, it’s an incredible feat to make them all unique.
There was romance in And I Darken, and it’s hard for me to describe it because it’s so complex and I don’t want to spoil anything. I do think the author did a good job with queer representation- that hint I’ll give you- but I don’t want to say much more. Let’s just say that the lines between friendship and relationships are very murky- sometimes it’s hard to tell which is which.
Many books include action scenes, but few books include strategic meeting scenes, where the characters discuss the nitty gritty details of the battles and how they plan to attack. I always love to know how and why the characters decided to fight where they fought, and I must say that this book included almost 50/50 representation between action and strategy. I LOVED IT!
If you can’t tell, I highly recommend this book and give it 4.5/5stars.