Published by DoubleDay Canada on April 8th 2014
Genres: Fantasy, YA
In the Forest of the Dead, where the empire’s worst criminals are exiled, twin sisters Moria and Ashyn are charged with a dangerous task. For they are the Keeper and the Seeker, and each year they must quiet the enraged souls of the damned.
Only this year, the souls will not be quieted.
Ambushed and separated by an ancient evil, the sisters’ journey to find each other sends them far from the only home they’ve ever known. Accompanied by a stubborn imperial guard and a dashing condemned thief, the girls cross a once-empty wasteland, now filled with reawakened monsters of legend, as they travel to warn the emperor. But a terrible secret awaits them at court—one that will alter the balance of their world forever.
I read Sea of Shadows around three weeks ago and it’s still hard writing the review. This book was just SO GOOD! The book revolves around Ashyn and Moria, a pair of twin sisters that have duties as The Seeker and The Keeper. The Seeker, Ashyn, is responsible for going into the Forest of the Dead and calming the spirits that roam free while The Keeper, Moria, protects her. In the book, this is a very sacred ritual and it must be done properly but when a terrible tragedy occurs, they have to travel far from home and to places they’ve never gone before to fix it. Epic, right?!
I honestly loved the world-building. It was unique and not too complex which was easy to follow along with. The writing was just done exceptionally and I could really visualize what was happening. The plot was easy to understand as well and I actually knew what was happening which I sometimes can’t do with fantasy novels. There were a lot of plot twists and stuff I didn’t see coming but I have to say that the beginning of Sea of Shadows was terribly slow. It takes a while to get really into it but it is so worth it! IN addition, there are so many fantasy elements in the story. There are old myths that are interesting to read and the creatures in the novel are just epic! I also enjoyed reading about The Seeking process and more about the twins’ life as a Seeker and Keeper. The world-building was just fascinating!
The characters in Sea of Shadows are as awesome as the world-building. I liked that Moria and Ashyn had their own personalities and weren’t just more than a pair of identical twins (which happens often).I loved that Moria was kick-ass while Ashyn was a little more naive and innocent. It was interesting to see how two people so different could care for each other so much. The secondary characters in the novel were equally great. Ronan was a little devious but I loved reading about him as well and Gavril was annoying (at first) but I quickly warmed up to him. And that brings me to the romance. While the romance is not heavily emphasized, I shipped so many characters together and GAHHH I was finding everything adorable!
Overall, I really enjoyed Sea of Shadows. The beginning of the novel was a little slow and I did have to warm up to some of the secondary characters but I really enjoyed the novel. The main characters were awesome and I just adored the fantasy elements! I highly recommend Sea of Shadows if you are looking for a great new fantasy series!