Publication Date: February 4, 2020
Genre: YA Fantasy
Dates Read: January 28-February 1, 2020
Format: NetGalley eARC provided by Publisher
“Set in a kingdom where danger lurks beneath the sea, mermaids seek vengeance with song, and magic is a choice, Adalyn Grace’s All the Stars and Teeth is a thrilling fantasy for fans of Stephanie Garber’s Caraval and Sarah J. Maas’s Throne of Glass series.
She will reign.
As princess of the island kingdom Visidia, Amora Montara has spent her entire life training to be High Animancer—the master of souls. The rest of the realm can choose their magic, but for Amora, it’s never been a choice. To secure her place as heir to the throne, she must prove her mastery of the monarchy’s dangerous soul magic.
When her demonstration goes awry, Amora is forced to flee. She strikes a deal with Bastian, a mysterious pirate: he’ll help her prove she’s fit to rule, if she’ll help him reclaim his stolen magic.
But sailing the kingdom holds more wonder—and more peril—than Amora anticipated. A destructive new magic is on the rise, and if Amora is to conquer it, she’ll need to face legendary monsters, cross paths with vengeful mermaids, and deal with a stow-away she never expected… or risk the fate of Visidia and lose the crown forever.
I am the right choice. The only choice. And I will protect my kingdom.“
I really enjoyed this debut YA Fantasy from Adalyn Grace. Plus a book with Magic, Pirates, and Mermaids? Sign me up! I am all about that!
While I did end up really enjoying this book in the end, I did struggle with the pacing in the beginning as the magic system was being explained and the world was being constructed. I did love this magic system though. That and the characters helped me push through the slow beginning. At around 30-40% or so, it picks up and is just full of action.
I really loved the dynamic between our MCs, Amora, Bastian and Feddick. I found it to be quite a fun sort of round-about way of doing the ever dreaded love triangle. (Not a true love-triangle, because one is unrequited) Vataea is also an awesome side character. She is a mermaid with a grudge, but also loyal. It was really great to see all these characters interact and grow. Amora is a fierce spit-fire female protagonist, and nothing is standing in her way of helping and protecting her kingdom. Bastian is this broody and mysterious pirate, who you can’t help but fall in love with. Him and Amor’s snarky back and forth is fantastic.
I also really liked the concept of this magical kingdom constructed of different islands. I found that it was a unique spin on a caste system and I really enjoyed that.
Overall, I thought this was a highly entertaining read, and look forward to the next book in this series!
*Special thanks to NetGalley, Adalyn Grace and Imprint for the advanced eARC in exchange for my honest thoughts and review*
Content Warning from Author:
Violence and Death: There are 7 main forms of magic in this book. One of the most commonly used ones is violent in nature, requiring blood/skin/bones, or other parts of the body. The methods to obtain these are often violent and sometimes torturous in nature. There’s a blanket statement on this book for on-page graphic violence, blood, and murder.
There are several character deaths throughout the novel. One of these deaths is death by suicide.
There is self injury (fingernails digging into the palms to the point of blood) in chapter 31
There is a brief moment of animal abuse (no animal death) in chapter 29.
A character mentions past attempted sexual assault in chapter 19.
There is a severely toxic relationship that portrays emotional and physical abuse (gripping too tightly/fingers digging into skin) in chapter 29.
There is on page drinking as well of mentions of alcohol throughout the novel.