Shadow and Bone - Leigh Bardugo, Leigh Bardugo As children Alina and Mal were inseparable, orphans and best friends they clung to each other as they grew up. Now they are part of the army getting ready to cross the Fold a mysterious pitch black expanse that is full of flesh eating demons. Along the journey through the Fold to save Mal’s life Alina discovers that she is Grisha and can call the power of the sun. Now she is separated from Mal, her best friend and possibly the boy she loves, for a new life full of privileges to hone her powers and possibly save her country from the fold.While none of this is particularly a new story it was interestingly told. The world is like an alternate version of Russia where the king rules with the help of the Grisha (people with powers to summon elements, heal or build extraordinary contraptions) the Darkling is the head of the Grisha and surrounded by mystery for much of the story it is difficult to tell if he is good or evil. It is a fun story where I really pulled for the main character Alina to come out of her shell and embrace the new power she has. The Darkling was a well thought out charismatic character that even when it was realized that he is the villain he is still so shrouded in mystery that you still can like hating him. The romance aspect was ‘cute’ and although it seemed like there was more passion between Alina and the Darkling the love between Alina and Mal was more of a friendship over time that bloomed into something more. It was subdued but heartfelt. Worth a read if you’ve got some extra time