"Shadow and Bone"
Written by: Leigh Bardugo
This is a pretty unique contribution to the YA/Fantasy genre. I wouldn't say the writing is amazing, but it's certainly not terrible. I enjoyed reading it. The world created by Bardugo is pretty complex (complete with LOTR style maps and categories of beings that are new and hard to keep up with at first). It seems to have very heavy Russian influences---geography, clothing style, language, etc. It's almost like an alternate history for Russia/Eastern Europe---one that takes place in a time that must have been long ago, yet has an added magical element that takes it into the fantasy realm.
I'm interested to see where the trilogy goes from here. The story of book one was interesting and I can see what the overarching conflict of the series will be, but as a stand alone it was a bit anti-climactic and obvious to me. I am also wondering if it will get optioned for a movie and become the next big thing in YA entertainment.