Publisher: Random House Children's Books
It was like a nightmare, but there was no waking up. When the night began, Nora had two best friends and an embarrassingly storybook one true love. When it ended, she had nothing but blood on her hands and an echoing scream that stopped only when the tranquilizers pierced her veins and left her in the merciful dark. But the next morning, it was all still true: Chris was dead. His girlfriend Adriane, Nora's best friend, was catatonic. And Max, Nora's sweet, smart, soft-spoken Prince Charming, was gone. He was also—according to the police, according to her parents, according to everyone—a murderer. Desperate to prove his innocence, Nora follows the trail of blood, no matter where it leads. It ultimately brings her to the ancient streets of Prague, where she is drawn into a dark web of secret societies and shadowy conspirators, all driven by a mad desire to possess something that might not even exist. For buried in a centuries-old manuscript is the secret to ultimate knowledge and communion with the divine; it is said that he who controls the Lumen Dei controls the world. Unbeknownst to her, Nora now holds the crucial key to unlocking its secrets. Her night of blood is just one piece in a puzzle that spans continents and centuries. Solving it may be the only way she can save her own life.
What I thoughtThe premise for this book left me dying to get my hands on it. And it did not disappoint! After I had finished it, I was left in a book stupor, my mind going through everything that I had just read. It's pretty early in the year, but this is definitely going to be on my top 5 read this year. What I was impressed with was the planning and detail that went into this book. I read a lot and I've read a lot of books that don't engage the mind or the imagination as well as this does. It reeled me in and didn't let go, even when the book was done. And, to be honest, I loved the fact that I couldn't stop thinking about it when it was all over.
So much happens in this book. It's dark and not always pleasant. I loved Nora. She suffers quite a bit in this but she doesn't wilt under pressure. There are times when she wants to but doesn't. I connected to her right away and was able to feel her grief and pain the whole journey. I was left guessing at what would happen next with Nora. And through Nora, I even connected with Elizabeth Weston. I really loved the treasure hunt that the characters were on. The story unfolds in such a way to throw everything that you thought you knew for fact out the window. Sometimes it's really easy to figure out where a book is going. Every time I thought I had it all figured out, there was a twist or turn that left all my theories in the dust.
After finishing this and reading the Afterword, I have this sudden desire to see the city in which a good portion of this book takes place. I felt as if I was really there, along side the characters. This book definitely needs to be added to your wishlist. The Book of Blood and Shadow has everything that a book could want to entertain and literally left me breathless.
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