Book Review: Rule of Wolves by Leigh Bardugo

Rule of Wolves by Leigh Bardugo was a book that took me by surprise. From the LGBTQ+ representation to the long-awaited Six of Crows and Shadow and Bone crossover, my jaw was glued to the floor.

Rule of Wolves takes place several weeks after the end of the previous book in the King of Scars duology, King of Scars. Nikolai Lantsov, the soon-to-be king of Ravka, is still trying to rebuild his country. Chaos ensues, and war begins. Nikolai and his general, Zoya Nazyalensky, must create weapons tough enough to retaliate against their enemies.


Meanwhile, Nina Zenik, a Ravkan spy, is working with Hanne Brum, the child of a Fjerdan general, to help the Ravkan war effort from inside enemy lines. At the same time, Ehri Kir-Taban, Tamar Kir-Bataar, and Mayu Kir-Kaat all travel to Shu Han to save the country from corruption and save Grisha while they’re at it.

How do you survive a world that keeps taking?

Zoya Nazyalensky

Bardugo definitely made an effort to fix her errors in the Shadow and Bone trilogy with this book. The lack of representation in the trilogy was disappointing. Rule of Wolves is what Shadow and Bone should’ve been—a nose-dive into the cultures of the Grishaverse.

Here, you get a real look into Shu culture whilst learning darker secrets about Fjerda. You get to compare and contrast the two, something that you really couldn’t do in any of the other books since the character perspectives weren’t that different from one another. Since Rule of Wolves includes the perspectives of Nikolai, Zoya, Nina, Mayu, and the Darkling, you get a broader view of Bardugo’s world.

All in all, Rule of Wolves is a book that won’t disappoint if you’re a fan of the Grishaverse, and I’m looking forward to Leigh Bardugo’s next books in the series. You should definitely check it out if you have the chance.

-Shadi H.

Rules of Wolves by Leigh Bardugo can be downloaded for free on Overdrive.

Book Review: Rea and the Blood of the Nectar by Payal Doshi

Rea and the Blood of the Nectar by Payal Doshi follows the life of a 12 year-old girl named Rea. She lives in Darjeeling with her grandma, mother, and twin brother, Rohan. After finding out her brother is missing, Rea makes it her mission to find him—even if it takes her to a world she’s never been to before and she has to face her family’s past.

This book is amazing for a multitude of reasons. First, it’s rich in culture. There may be unknown vocabulary, such as clothing or foods you may not know of, but there is a glossary in the back of the book that provides explanations.

Another thing, the book has maps in the first few pages. A fantasy book isn’t complete without its maps, and I found it endearing that there were even maps of India and Darjeeling to further immerse the reader. Little details like that make the book more accessible for younger readers.

The world-building in this book is also outstanding, another thing very important in fantasy books since they take place outside of our world. When reading about the whimsical world of Astranthia, where Rea is supposed to find her brother, I found myself wanting to explore as well.

Given all these things, Rea and the Blood of the Nectar is a great book for all audiences. If I could, I’d give it 5 out of 5 stars. It’s a feel-good book that includes cultural representation, family love, and a fantasy adventure.

-Shadi H.