Luce Price has always felt different. Shadows seem to haunt her every move. For years she’s felt completely alone in her own nightmare of darkness and now the shadows have emerged into a truly formidable force. After a tragic incident concerning Luce and the shadows takes place, Luce is sent to Sword and Cross, a reform school. Without her best friends and her family, Luce has never felt more isolated. Yet, a ray of light still remains. She meets two enigmatic boys, and feels an uncanny connection to one of them: Daniel Griggori. Unfortunately, he seems to go out of his way to avoid her. Desperate to uncover the secrets Daniel hides from her, Luce will stop at nothing to find out.
I loved that the author kept the reader in suspense, practically throughout the whole book. I was constantly trying to discover the secrets just as Luce was, and like her I mostly came up empty handed. I also enjoyed the depth the author gave to her characters. Each main character as well as the many side characters were fully developed; there was also a good mix of quirky, serious, and scheming characters, which added to the book. There were multiple times I wanted to groan in frustration, just as Luce did, because I felt I could really understand her. The unknown past of Daniel Grigori was definitely the most compelling aspect of the novel. The cover was breathtaking. Similar to the plot of the story, it was rather gloomy and mysterious. Luce’s dark hair enframes the cover and her head is slightly turned so that her face is hidden. Behind her is a despondent forest. I would recommend the novel to readers who love fantasy romance novels and suspense. I would give the book a rating of four, because it was definitely better than most, but I felt that the vocabulary and description used could have been more diverse and elaborate. As a whole though, the novel was utterly captivating.