Published by HarperTeen on February 9th 2016
Source: ARC borrowed thru Around the World ARC Tours
Seventeen years ago, an eclipse cloaked the kingdom of Relhok in perpetual darkness. In the chaos, an evil chancellor murdered the king and queen and seized their throne. Luna, Relhok’s lost princess, has been hiding in a tower ever since. Luna’s survival depends on the world believing she is dead.
But that doesn’t stop Luna from wanting more. When she meets Fowler, a mysterious archer braving the woods outside her tower, Luna is drawn to him despite the risk. When the tower is attacked, Luna and Fowler escape together. But this world of darkness is more treacherous than Luna ever realized.
With every threat stacked against them, Luna and Fowler find solace in each other. But with secrets still unspoken between them, falling in love might be their most dangerous journey yet.
~ 17 years ago, in the kingdom of Relhok, Luna is born as an eclipse begins. It’s still going on. The only time of the day where there’s kind of light is the one hour of Midlight.
~ Luna lives in the middle of the Black Woods, which is rumored to be haunted, in a tall tower. She has no real comprehension of just how awful the outside world is, so of course she longs to get out of her tower.
~ Fowler is the typical reluctant hero- he’s lost those he’s loved in the past, so he’s built up a tower around his heart to block out feelings. But, you know, Luna knows a thing or two about towers.
~ Some truly awful stuff goes down, and Luna ends up traveling with Fowler, who is looking for the Isle of Allu, which is rumored to be free of Dwellers- creatures which emerged from underground after the eclipse. I totally pictured them as the inbred cave beasties from the movie The Descent:
~ Because Luna is all tough heroine and Fowler is all wounded anti-hero, the two of them have some snappy fights, which only emphasizes their chemistry. Their relationship was one of my favorite things in the book, but I did like that they have strong identities outside of their coupledom. Also, sometimes an almost kiss is way sexier than actual sex.
~ I had mixed feelings about the book, which is why it’s only a 3 and a 1/2 review rather than a 4 or 5. There were some scenes that reminded me strongly of scenes from movies (Avatar in a few places, The Princess Bride in another, Tangled too), so each time this happened, I would get pulled out from the story a bit. Not that there isn’t plenty of Jordan’s own creative magic- there is, and that’s what is going to keep me reading this series. That plus, the cliffhanger ending. The wait might kill me.
Luna- our heroine, has spent her whole life living in a tower and in the darkness.
Fowler- our hero, tries to be aloof, but underneath that rough exterior is a puppy dog heart.
Perla- the sweet caregiver who rescued Luna at the start of the Eclipse and has helped raise her.
Sivo- the other caregiver to Luna, a strong hunter and protector.
Chancellor Cullan- now King, after the brutal deaths of Luna’s parents, he will stop at nothing to keep the throne.
Madoc and Dagne- a brother/sister duo whom Fowler gets stuck with.
Bethan- someone Fowler couldn’t save.
Henley- Commander and a vicious soldier whom Fowler knows.
Gunner and Anselm- two woodsmen, hunting for heads.
Glagos- sheriff of Ortley.
Mirelya- old woman who takes in Fowler and Luna.
Digger- a tree wolf.
The backstory with Bethan, and the sudden death of another character… and the reason behind it… the book is a wee bit violent, which is of course the stuff Midnight Book Girls like me eat for breakfast. 😉
Stop the Clock:
Reign of Shadows is definitely a fantasy YA book that does a good job of mixing fairytale with monsters and terror and adventure. Sophie Jordan dishes up some surprises along the way that will leave you wanting to know what happens next!
Reign of Shadows gets a Midnight Book rating of: