Review: This Savage Song, Victoria Schwab

There are no spoilers in this review.

Let me set things straight before getting into this review: This Savage Song is a book out of my comfort zone. Like, really out, there and far away. I have been getting more and more into fantasy books, different books I ended up loving, these past few years, but This Savage Song was still a massive step out of the usual way I go, with books.
Why, you ask? There are monsters. Like, really bad monsters. If I’m being completely honest here, I’m kind of a wuss. Everything indicated that this book was not for me, yet… I have read the Shades of Magic series by Schwab and was impressed and in awe with her qualities as a writer and world-builder. Also, I asked Kat which books I should buy a couple weeks ago and she told me to get this book. I didn’t know, at first, but then I told myself okay. let’s try.
I did RIGHT. I ended up enjoying this book about monsters. Like, really enjoying it.
Alright, story-time over, let’s get into this review now, shall we.

AN INCREDIBLE WORLD-BUILDING

πŸ’­

β€œHe wasn’t made of flesh and bone, or starlight.
He was made of darkness.”

This Savage Song is set into a city divided in two, where monsters, actual, real monsters, live. People don’t go out after dark. People are scared, and so am I while reading this book. Yet I can’t stop. In this city divided in two, where a man named Haker makes people pay for his protection from the monsters on one side, and where another man named Flynn rules the other side of the city… well, everything is weird and scary and here to make you feel on edge, right from the very beginning of the book.

β€œGood and bad were weak words. Monsters didn’t care about intentions or ideals. The facts were simple. The South was chaos. The North was order. It was an order bought and paid for with blood and fear, but order all the same.”

I am not here to tell the story you’re going to read in the synopsis, but here to talk about the incredible world-building and talent of the author. I was surprised and amazed by her skills in the Shades of Magic series, and I found that again in This Savage Song: an ability to create a three-dimensional world, with rules and incredible details, making this book a vivid read that clearly immerse you right in the heart of this messy, freaky, violent world. The details put both into the world, landscapes and rules of it all, the past of the city, the history behind the conflict, but as well inside the characters’ minds and back-stories, is fantastic. I can say without a doubt that Schwab is one of the authors I admire the most for that: her abilities, not to write books, but worlds you immerse yourself into. Worlds you are so into that you find yourself a bit dazed once you get out of it. She makes you feel everything.

TWO GREAT MAIN CHARACTERS – ONE I TRY TO LOVE, ONE I WANT TO HUG

πŸ’­

Told from a dual POV, This Savage Song takes us into the minds and hearts of both characters opposite of each other in this city at war. Kate, daughter of Harker and August, son of Flynn (sort of). All she wants is to make her father proud and gain his respect. All he wants is to be human, feel human, be something he is not, but he is a monster.

β€œI live in a world where shadows have teeth. It’s not a particularly relaxing environment.”

As the story goes on, we get to know both characters, get details on who they are, why they do what they do, their back stories and so on, making us slowly fall in love with them. I had a bit of a hard time loving Kate, it took me a little while to grow attached to her, but eventually I understood her and wanted her to be okay, even if at times… I dreamed of slapping her. She struggled to be who she wanted to be for her father and what she really is, inside. I loved that internal struggle.

β€œIt was a cruel trick of the universe, thought August, that he only felt human after doing something monstrous.”

August is precious, in a way that I wanted to hug him right from the start, even if he is a monster. All he wants is to escape who he is, but sometimes that just can’t happen and he broke my heart. I JUST LOVE HIM OKAY.

A HEART-POUNDING, ORIGINAL (AND A BIT CRAZY) RIDE

πŸ’­

This Savage Song was a heart-pounding, fast-paced read – once you get into the story and the first part. I don’t know if all of Schwab’s books work this way, but I found myself feeling the same way as I did in the beginning of ADSOM: it was a bit slow to get into. But it only serves the story well, in the end, because this time taken at the beginning perfectly sets up the world we are in, only to allow ourselves to get more immersed into it right after-wards.

There was fight, there was blood, there were moments where I wanted to close my eyes and moments I didn’t enjoy reading – yes, still out of my comfort zone a bit, all of these bloody monsters – …. yet, I surprised myself by enjoying this story a whole lot. The originality of the plot, the way I grew attached to the characters, rooted for them and wanted them to be okay. AND THE PLOT TWISTS AND BAD GUYS and I shall put no spoilers here but there is someone I LOATHE okay.

OVERALL

πŸ’­

If you like Schwab’s work, aren’t afraid of a dark, urban fantasy story and monsters, I’d heavily recommend this one. It was a wild ride and I’m definitely going to read the sequel – hiding under a blanket, in case something bad happens to my babies. Especially August.

Final rating:Β  4 drops!

Trigger warnings: violence, murder, attempted murder, torture.


Victoria Schwab, This Savage Song, Β Published by Greenwillow Books, July 5th, 2017.

goodreads-badge-add-plus-fad3b68d35050280ea55d50f17c654b5

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 villainsβ€”and friends or enemiesβ€”with the future of their home at stake. The first of two books.

Kate Harker and August Flynn are the heirs to a divided cityβ€”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 innocentβ€”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.

Did you read This Savage Song? Do you want to?

Did you read any other books by Victoria Schwab? Which one is your favorite? Let me know in comments!

Posted by

Book blogger, travel blogger, writer. πŸ“š |🌍 | πŸ’ž Writing & Communications Graduate. French. Living on love, wanderlust and ya books.

74 thoughts on “Review: This Savage Song, Victoria Schwab

  1. As I have said and will continue to say, I love when you read books that I recommended and end up liking/loving them. My love for August is among the strongest to any fictional character out there and I will tell you now that it won’t be easy to read Our Dark Duet. Our baby has changed with time and circumstance. I wish I could just get him out of that environment.
    Great review, Marie! And I love the quotes you picked to accentuate your talking points ❀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I really didn’t think I would love that one as much as I did. I’m so happy – thank you again for the recommendation! I’ll ask you for more in the new year, ahah, for now I’m a bit overwhelmed with books πŸ˜›

      You are making me so worried about Our Dark Duet, ahah. I just want August to be okay 😦
      Thank you so, so much!! ❀ ❀

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Hahaha you are always welcome to ask for recommendations, but I have been so bad with reading lately that I am not sure how much I can offer up. I will always try though.
        And I am not saying that August isn’t okay, I am saying he is … a bit different.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. It’s not getting better? You have managed to get back into reading lately, though ❀ so that's good already!! πŸ™‚
        Okay … well I'll be ready for that ahah, or try to be!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Such a lovely review, as always, Marie!! ❀ I’m glad you enjoyed it as I’m interested in reading it soon. I won’t be able to do it until I finish the ADSOM series. But the prospect of reading something with monsters makes me really happy. Fantasy is somewhat out of my comfort zone too, but it’s always nice to find beautiful books in this genre!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh thank you so much!! ❀ I can't wait for you to finish the ADSOM series, first, it was such a great series and that ending was SO good as well πŸ™‚
      It is so great whenever we can fall in love with books we don't expect to really love. such a great feeling!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I haven’t read anything by Victoria Schwab, but I’m planning to in 2018. I’ve only heard good things about her books! So glad to hear the world-building is great in this one! That’s my big thing with fantasy books, the world-building needs to be incredible.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh this is such great news, I hope you will love her books! Do you know which one you will read first? πŸ™‚
      I don’t think that Schwab will disappoint you, then – I find her world-building really, really fascinating and incredible. There are just so many details, without slowing down anything in the book or being info-dumpy. It makes me feel so immersed in her stories πŸ™‚
      thank you so much for stopping by, Angela!! ❀

      Like

      1. Oh okay, I understand :/ well, the only thing I’d advice would be to wait a little while and…if you really have this feeling you should try it out, DO IT! Maybe this will be a book you’ll end up loving πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

  4. I wish I had enjoyed this book as much as you did but the monsters kind of fell flat for me. I don’t know, I was looking something scary, at least an ohmygosh moment but that didn’t happen. Also, the slow pace kind of put me off too but overall, I did enjoy the duology.
    Great review Marie! ❀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ohh I understand your feelings. To be honest, I was glad it wasn’t too.. well, it didn’t go into horror too badly, I wouldn’t have handled it too well hahaha.
      Thank you so much, Poulami!! ❀

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Yess Queen V. E. Schwab strikes again. I cannot wait to read this book (hopefully it’ll come in the mail this year…hopefully…sighhhhh) because it sounds so cool and original?? Also everybody has been raving about it.
    Have I ever told you how much I love your reviews? Because I dooo they are so good. You explain things so well and I aspire to get to your level of “putting emotion into words”…I usually just resume to CAPSLOCK and/or keyboard smashing.
    Happy Holidays (I am getting sappy and rambly) ❀!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I hope you will get this book soon and read it so we can talk about it together. Especially talk about AUGUST HE IS SO PRECIOUS you will love him ❀
      Ohhhhh wow, thank you so, so much! I feel like most of the time I'm not making any sense, but I'm doing my best to talk about everything I enjoyed in the book ahah. that's way too sweet, thank you!! and yay for ALL CAPS, way to convey all the feels as well!! ❀
      thank you and happy holidays to you too!! ❀

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I loved the Monsters of Verity duology. The world was so intense and the characters were so vividly written. Even though I loved the story, I don’t know if I would be able to watch it if it was made into a movie because of all the gore, and monsters. A couple times when I was reading all I could think was β€œthis would definitely be a rated R movie” haha.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hahhaha oh same here! I would NOT watch this as a movie, at all, I could never handle it haha. As a book, I managed even if I was a bit scared of that, too. I loved the charcters, yes! They were just SO great ❀ I can't wait to read the second book. thank you so much!! ❀

      Like

  7. I’m still yet to read a book by Victoria Schwab but this review gets me really excited to, perhaps in 2018! Would you suggest this series first or the Shades of Magic series? Lovely review Marie, so glad you enjoyed this one! Fantasies with amazing world-building always end up as my faves πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. OH yay! This makes me so happy πŸ™‚
      I would definitely recommend the Shades of Magic series, because I preferred it and I heard that it was a great way to start on Schwab’s books, as well πŸ™‚ I can’t wait for you to read her books πŸ˜€
      thank you so much! xx

      Like

  8. I just finished this the other day and was not impressed 😦

    I think I’ve discovered that Schwab’s writing style isn’t my personal cup of tea because I find it hard to get into her stories (though I really did enjoy ADSOM #1, its sequel, not so much). I’m glad you enjoyed this though! I’m definitely in the minority for this one!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh no, I’m sorry to hear this :/ I understand where you are coming from, though. Her stories – well, the ones I read, so that one and ADSOM – always take a bit of time to kick-off, there are tons of chapters used to set everything up and it can be hard to get into it this way :/ I know I had a hard time getting into ADSOM, but I ended up loving it.
      thank you so much! xx

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Oh god, Marie, if you were scared by this one, you’re going to be TERRIFIED for ODD!! πŸ˜‚ It was so much darker than TSS (but I loved it so much more. even though IT RUINED ME). And YESSS August is such a sweet precious cinnamon roll! I love him so much and he just needs to be protected. ❀ And I totally agree!! It always takes me a bit to get into Schwab's books — but once you do, you're completely immersed. (Altho I was easily sucked into ODD from the very start!) Great review! ❀

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Oh I am so glad you loved this book Marie, especially given it’s so far out of your comfort zone. Then again V.E. Schwab is an incredible author and I know you enjoyed her Shades of Magic series so maybe it’s not surprising you ended up loving this one. πŸ˜€
    I agree the world building is incredible, it’s something I’ve loved about all of Schwab’s books. She always builds up her worlds so well but I still have so any questions about the cities she creates. Also August is one of my favourite characters ever, I loved how he tried so hard not to be a monster, he just wanted to be normal and I thought his story was kind of heartbreaking but in the best way possible you know? πŸ™‚
    I’ll be looking forwards to seeing what you think of the sequel for this book for sure, and great review as well. πŸ˜€ ❀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have a feeling Schwab could write entire books, city guides and all for all the world she builds and it still would be fascinating. It’s crazy, but I love it. She is SO talented for that.
      OH YES that’s exactly it. August’s story was heartbreaking, but I loved it so, so much – I think his condition and the fact he so not wanted to be a monster, made me warm up to him and love him even more ❀
      thank you so much!! ❀

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh she definitely could, in fact I would love to see a city guide for Red London because imagine how much there would be to explore in a London with magic! πŸ˜€
        He was incredible, and hopefully you’ll love his character even more in Our Dark Duet! πŸ™‚
        That’s all right. ❀

        Liked by 1 person

  11. I liked this much more then A Darker Shade of Magic. Actually, I liked Kate much more then August. She reminded me of myself and some kind of things that are reflected in my own life. Even if slightly different.
    The second book wasn’t the same, no big impressione, but I hope that maybe the author wil write a second series in this universe

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh I’m glad to hear you enjoyed this book πŸ™‚ It’s always great whenever you find a character that you can relate to, and remind me of yourself in a way, always helps to get immersed into the story ❀
      I take it that you loved the first book a bit more than Our Dark Duet? πŸ™‚
      thank you so much for your sweet comment! xx

      Liked by 1 person

  12. I’m so, so glad you enjoyed this – it’s one of the top books on my Christmas wishlist! πŸ˜‚ I’ve only read A Darker Shade of Magic (which I LOVED), and I really want to read all Schwab’s books now! I’m a total wuss as well, so let’s hope I won’t get too scared reading this. XD

    Lovely review!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha well I am a wuss too and I handled this one okay, so… I think you’re good to go! πŸ˜‚ and I’m always here if you need support while reading haha. I hope you will love it πŸ™‚
      thank you so much!! xx

      Like

  13. I’m so glad you enjoyed this book! I unfortunately, seem to be a bit of a black sheep with this book. I tried, I really tried to get into the book. The worldbuilding and characters seemed great and considering all of the raving reviews I had heard I really wanted to like it. It just wasn’t for me though. I spent a couple weeks actually trying to force myself to read it, and something in the writing style just didn’t agree with me. I was so sad after dnf it because I physically could not get through the book. Seeing all of the glowing reviews makes me wonder if maybe I missed something, or needed to just finish the book and so I’m thinking of picking it back up again but in the craziness of the new year, we’ll see. Great review like always!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh I’m sorry to hear that, Amelie! Maybe the author’s writing style isn’t for you? Did you try and read her most popular series, ADSOM? Maybe you could enjoy it better πŸ™‚
      Also, don’t feel bad about it all, we all are black sheeps about some books and… world would be boring if we weren’t there with our different taste and opinion πŸ™‚
      Thank you so much!! xx

      Liked by 1 person

      1. After thinking about it, I think the writing style isn’t for me, but because I haven’t tried her other series I don’t know if it was just a book, or time and place problem. So I’m hoping to try to re-read This Savage Song and read ADSOM. Thank you!!

        Liked by 1 person

  14. I HONESTLY DON’T KNOW WHY THIS SAVAGE SONG is so disappointing for everyone? I’m like, AM I THE ONLY ONE WHO ACTUALLY LOVED IT?! So it really nice to see that you enjoyed! And i think books out of your comfort zone are good from time to time because you discover some really great books. Kate is so much more loveable in the next book and August changes so much AND I CRY MARIE. Oh god, I don’t know if you are ready for Our Dark Duet. IT’S FABULOUS

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, I have seen that it’s been disappointing for SO many people and honestly, I’m not sure why. I found the talent of the author for world-building and character-crafting again in this and it was FANTASTIC πŸ™‚
      I’ll be ready for Our Dark Duet, then… and all the changes and I’m scareeeeeeed for August, SO MUCH hahaha.
      thank you so much!! xx

      Like

  15. Wonderful review, Marie! 😊
    I’m a Schwab fan myself so I’ve had this one on my TBR since forever hahaha
    Your review only made me want to read it more! The fact that it was something out of your comfort zone and you still ended up enjoying it so much speaks volumes of the author’s talent. I’ve always thought her world building was one of the best I’d ever encounter and I have yet to meet anyone who thinks otherwise.
    I love the whole Romeo and Juliet/Beauty and the Beast vibe of it as well (I’m a sucker for tragic love stories). Can’t wait to try it!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh thank you so much, Sophie!! ❀ Yes, the author is just SO TALENTED when it comes to world-building, I am amazed and always so… into the books she writes, I forget everything around me while I read. I can't wait for you to rea that one, hope you will love it πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  16. Hi Marie ❀ Love your review of this book, and I am so, so glad that you enjoyed it. I felt similarly in that I also fell in love with August quickly while it took me a while longer to warm up to Kate. And yes, I find that VE Schwab's books tend to be slow to start! (Our Dark Duet as well) Hope that you will enjoy the sequel as well!

    Liked by 1 person

  17. I’m so glad to see that you liked this book! πŸ˜€ It makes me even more exited to pick it up in the future! (I seriously need to finish the Shades of Magic series first.)
    Victoria Schwab is a master at world building, she always manages to create something unique and exiting. I can’t wait to experience the world of this duology. Amazing review Marie! πŸ™‚ ❀

    Liked by 1 person

  18. We rated this book exactly the same and basically I share a lot of similar thoughts to you on this one. I have yet to read the sequel as well. I loved the world building and I especially loved August ❀ It was a bit harder to get with Kate but I can see it happening for me in the sequel if things keep progressing the way they do. Great review x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. OH I’m happy to hear you’ve been feeling the same way! πŸ™‚
      This book was really great, August was my favorite, I want to hug him haha ❀ I can't wait to read the sequel, hope we will both enjoy it πŸ™‚
      Thank you so much! ❀ ❀

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.