Review // Reign of the Fallen by Sarah Glenn Marsh

Monday, January 29, 2018

Reign of the Fallen by Sarah Glenn Marsh
Reign of the Fallen #1
Publisher: Razorbill
Publication Date: January 23rd, 2018
Rating: 4 Stars
Source: ARC Tour (Thanks Bayy!)
Format: ARC
Pages: 384

Summary (from Goodreads):

Odessa is one of Karthia's master necromancers, catering to the kingdom's ruling Dead. Whenever a noble dies, it's Odessa's job to raise them by retrieving their souls from a dreamy and dangerous shadow world called the Deadlands. But there is a cost to being raised--the Dead must remain shrouded, or risk transforming into zombie-like monsters known as Shades. If even a hint of flesh is exposed, the grotesque transformation will begin.

A dramatic uptick in Shade attacks raises suspicions and fears among Odessa's necromancer community. Soon a crushing loss of one of their own reveals a disturbing conspiracy: someone is intentionally creating Shades by tearing shrouds from the Dead--and training them to attack. Odessa is faced with a terrifying question: What if her necromancer's magic is the weapon that brings Karthia to its knees?

I was super excited to be a part of an ARC tour for REIGN OF THE FALLEN after absolutely loving FEAR THE DROWNING DEEP last year! Fortunately, this book didn't disappoint like a lot of them have been doing lately.

Reign of the Fallen follows Odessa as she navigates the Deadlands and battles terrifying Shades. She is one of the most talented necromancers in Karthia. She has a sixth sense to navigate her way through the ever-changing Deadlands and is the chosen necromancer to repeatedly bring back the King of Karthia.

Something interesting about this book is the fact that it deals a lot with grief and addiction. Odessa is dealing with the loss of someone dear to her and overusing a numbing potion to deal with the grief. I feel like a good chunk of this book deals with this and I've never read anything like it that I can remember and I thought it was interesting.

I loved all the characters in this book. I even liked the "villain" in this book. I could see why they did what they did and felt how they did. I don't necessarily think they were bad and kind of wish they could have gotten what they wanted in a less awful fashion.

Also, I feel like in most kings in books are either evil or just not present and I thought it was interesting that the king of Karthia was present and decent. He was definitely set in his ways (and had been for like 200 years) and the conflict in this book could have been avoided if he would have yielded a bit, but he was an otherwise decent guy!

I liked the romance in this book as well! There's hate to love in this book. Odessa is bisexual and I liked both of the love interests she has in this book! There is also an m/m couple in this book and I really liked them!

I thought the magic system was interesting in this book. The type of magic you can practice is determined by the color of your eyes. Odessa and her fellow necromancers have blue eyes. I don't remember if there was an explanation for why this is or if I missed it because I was just blazing through this book due to a combination of 1) IT'S SO GOOD and 2) I got the book for an ARC Tour and was the lucky one to get it RIGHT during the holidays, but I think it would be interesting to know why type of magic affinity is based on eye color.

If I were going to say I didn't like something about this book, I think I would say the ending. Like, not the ending in general, but how Odessa leaves things at the end?? I don't really want to say much about it because it's the ending and that could be considered spoilery.

Oh! I also wonder why a person seeing even a tiny sliver of the flesh of the Dead turns the Dead person into a Shade? I feel like that's kind of a silly reason for them to turn into Shades.

Overall, I would DEFINITELY recommend this book if you are looking for a darker fantasy or want some awesome necromancers in your life. This book is beautiful inside and out and I think you should pick this one up if you get the chance!

Have you read Reign of the Fallen yet? What did you think of it? Let me know in the comments!


  1. Ooh, so glad to see your review! I am so intrigued by this one, and I am always looking for darker fantasy, so I will definitely be picking it up! I need more necromancy in books, haha. Can't wait to read it, and thanks for sharing your thoughts!

    1. Definitely do pick it up! It was fantastic! I am starting to really like my necromancy books! I hope that there are a lot more of them out/in the works! :)


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