Saturday, May 21, 2022

Gallant by V.E. Schwab, Manuel Sumberac (Illustrator)

Everything casts a shadow. Even the world we live in. And as with every shadow, there is a place where it must touch. A seam, where the shadow meets its source.

Olivia Prior has grown up in Merilance School for girls, and all she has of her past is her mother’s journal—which seems to unravel into madness. Then, a letter invites Olivia to come home—to Gallant. Yet when Olivia arrives, no one is expecting her. But Olivia is not about to leave the first place that feels like home, it doesn’t matter if her cousin Matthew is hostile or if she sees half-formed ghouls haunting the hallways.

Olivia knows that Gallant is hiding secrets, and she is determined to uncover them. When she crosses a ruined wall at just the right moment, Olivia finds herself in a place that is Gallant—but not. The manor is crumbling, the ghouls are solid, and a mysterious figure rules over all. Now Olivia sees what has unraveled generations of her family, and where her father may have come from.

Olivia has always wanted to belong somewhere, but will she take her place as a Prior, protecting our world against the Master of the House? Or will she take her place beside him?

Hardcover, 334 pagesr
Published March 1, 2022
 by Greenwillow Books
3.5/5 stars

Though I wasn’t a huge fan of The Invisible Life of Addie Larue I wanted to give this author another try.

This book starts off with me connecting right away to Olivia, it wasn’t hard when first introduced to Olivia and learn about her experiences at this place called Merilance. The author vividly put me in that location with its derelict and abandon outbuildings the feeling of her desolation with no friends and uncompassionate caregivers. But her personality shines through in her cunning and smarts. She leaves this place for new adventures and hopefully with family at a place called Gallant. I should add that Olivia cannot speak.

Gallant is where things start to get strange and unsettling. What follows is not what was hoped for or envisioned. It is mysterious with that supernatural element.

When I felt the middle part drag a little I listened to the audiobook for the remainder. The last part was fast paced, which would have been nice for the middle part. I did follow along with the book for the illustrations and extra letters apart from the story.

Marketed as YA it had more of a middle grade feel to it. Thankfully I like MG .

This book was part of my 2022 Reading Off My Shelf Challenge.

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