Sky in the Deep. Adrienne Young. Young Adult/Fantasy. 2018. 352 pages. 3 stars.
“I was the ice on the river. The snow clinging onto the mountainside.”
I received an Advanced Reader’s Copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
OND ELDR. BREATHE FIRE.
Raised to be a warrior, seventeen-year-old Eelyn fights alongside her Aska clansmen in an ancient rivalry against the Riki clan. Her life is brutal but simple: fight and survive. Until the day she sees the impossible on the battlefield—her brother, fighting with the enemy—the brother she watched die five years ago.
Faced with her brother’s betrayal, she must survive the winter in the mountains with the Riki, in a village where every neighbor is an enemy, every battle scar possibly one she delivered. But when the Riki village is raided by a ruthless clan thought to be a legend, Eelyn is even more desperate to get back to her beloved family.
She is given no choice but to trust Fiske, her brother’s friend, who sees her as a threat. They must do the impossible: unite the clans to fight together, or risk being slaughtered one by one. Driven by a love for her clan and her growing love for Fiske, Eelyn must confront her own definition of loyalty and family while daring to put her faith in the people she’s spent her life hating.
I’ve been getting bored with the usual YA fantasy stories and tropes that we’ve been seeing lately, so I was super excited when I chanced upon a book about vikings!!! I was imagining many scenes that look like this:
But sadly, I didn’t really get to experience a lot of that. The scenes did happen, technically, but I felt like I wasn’t immersed in them. It wasn’t like The Hunger Games, where I my heart was racing,
and I felt like I could be the one stabbed at any time. I felt like I was watching the scenes the entire time, and I feel like this is why I wasn’t super satisfied after finishing the book.
Sky in the Deep is a fairly simple book. The plot, characters, and writing style were all simple. This makes the book very easy to read, but I also think that this is why I can only give it 3 stars. The premise was sooooo good, and I kept thinking of all the possibilities while I was reading. It’s not all the time where you get to be immersed in a book set in the cold and the fjords with VIKINGS!!! Sadly, I feel like I wasn’t really satisfied in that aspect.
However, I have to give the author mad props for not being afraid to include blood in the fight scenes.
It was surprising to see a sentence saying that the main character pulled another person’s eye out, but it was also refreshing to see an author who wasn’t holding back in that aspect. It’s because of that, the book felt more mature.
Overall, I’d recommend this book to those who want a different setting in their typical YA books. I’ve seen many 5 star reviews, so I’m pretty sure that there will be many people who will enjoy this more than me. However, it’s going to be 3 stars from me.