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Give the Dark My Love

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When seventeen-year-old Nedra Brysstain leaves her home in the rural, northern territories of Lunar Island to attend the prestigious Yugen Academy, she has only one goal in mind: learn the trade of medicinal alchemy. A scholarship student matriculating with the children of Lunar Island's wealthiest and most powerful families, Nedra doesn't quite fit in with the other kids When seventeen-year-old Nedra Brysstain leaves her home in the rural, northern territories of Lunar Island to attend the prestigious Yugen Academy, she has only one goal in mind: learn the trade of medicinal alchemy. A scholarship student matriculating with the children of Lunar Island's wealthiest and most powerful families, Nedra doesn't quite fit in with the other kids at Yugen, who all look down on her. All, except for Greggori "Grey" Astor. Grey is immediately taken by the brilliant and stubborn Nedra, who he notices is especially invested in her studies. And that's for a good reason: a deadly plague has been sweeping through the North, and it's making its way toward the cities. With her family's life--and the lives of all of Lunar Island's citizens--on the line, Nedra is determined to find a cure for the plague. Grey and Nedra continue to grow closer, but as the sickness spreads and the body count rises, Nedra becomes desperate to find a cure. Soon, she finds herself diving into alchemy's most dangerous corners--and when she turns to the most forbidden practice of all, necromancy, even Grey might not be able to pull her from the darkness.


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When seventeen-year-old Nedra Brysstain leaves her home in the rural, northern territories of Lunar Island to attend the prestigious Yugen Academy, she has only one goal in mind: learn the trade of medicinal alchemy. A scholarship student matriculating with the children of Lunar Island's wealthiest and most powerful families, Nedra doesn't quite fit in with the other kids When seventeen-year-old Nedra Brysstain leaves her home in the rural, northern territories of Lunar Island to attend the prestigious Yugen Academy, she has only one goal in mind: learn the trade of medicinal alchemy. A scholarship student matriculating with the children of Lunar Island's wealthiest and most powerful families, Nedra doesn't quite fit in with the other kids at Yugen, who all look down on her. All, except for Greggori "Grey" Astor. Grey is immediately taken by the brilliant and stubborn Nedra, who he notices is especially invested in her studies. And that's for a good reason: a deadly plague has been sweeping through the North, and it's making its way toward the cities. With her family's life--and the lives of all of Lunar Island's citizens--on the line, Nedra is determined to find a cure for the plague. Grey and Nedra continue to grow closer, but as the sickness spreads and the body count rises, Nedra becomes desperate to find a cure. Soon, she finds herself diving into alchemy's most dangerous corners--and when she turns to the most forbidden practice of all, necromancy, even Grey might not be able to pull her from the darkness.

30 review for Give the Dark My Love

  1. 4 out of 5

    Emily May

    “If you do this, Nedra, if you choose necromancy . . . I will not follow you into that darkness.” “Oh, Grey,” I said, shifting my bag on my shoulder. “What do you know of darkness?” Well. This book's darkness certainly creeps up on you. In the best kind of way. While reading the first half of Give the Dark My Love, I thought it was a decent YA fantasy. It checked a number of boxes that appeal to me - "magic" alchemy school with mysterious tutors, political intrigue, some diversity (view spoiler)[ “If you do this, Nedra, if you choose necromancy . . . I will not follow you into that darkness.” “Oh, Grey,” I said, shifting my bag on my shoulder. “What do you know of darkness?” Well. This book's darkness certainly creeps up on you. In the best kind of way. While reading the first half of Give the Dark My Love, I thought it was a decent YA fantasy. It checked a number of boxes that appeal to me - "magic" alchemy school with mysterious tutors, political intrigue, some diversity (view spoiler)[at least of sexuality, but race is unclear (hide spoiler)] , and a heroine I could like. The romance did nothing for me, but then it rarely does. This first half features Nedra Brysstain - a poor country girl from the northern territories of Lunar Island - receiving a scholarship to attend Yugen Academy, a prestigious school that trains students in the science of medicinal alchemy. Most of the other students look down on the scholarship student, except for Greggori "Grey" Astor. Romance blooms alongside Nedra's growing alchemy skills. But Nedra is most interested in the plague that is spreading through Lunar Island. Her search for a cure is buoyed by her volunteering at a local hospital and seeing the horrific painful results of the disease. Behind the plague is a world of intricate politics - where it seems almost everyone is out for themselves and may even be using the plague to further their own political ambitions. It's quite fun, but it isn't until around the halfway point that this book goes from "fun" to nail-bitingly horrific. If you're the right kind of person, that will be a good thing. I couldn’t be a human in this moment. I had to be an alchemist. An alchemist sees the skin that must be sliced apart. The arteries that must be tied off. The bone that must be sawed through. An alchemist knows to hold the arm down so it doesn’t wiggle too much. Just a warning, though: it gets very dark. There are some gory bits in the first half and yet that doesn't really prepare you for what's to come. The story takes a very emotional and disturbing turn, but I can't deny it-- I was on the edge of my seat, wide-eyed and racing through the pages to find out what happens. The ending wraps up this chapter but it still left me excited (and a little terrified) to see what happens in the sequel. Those who regularly seek out dark reads should love this; everyone else proceed with caution. CW: graphic violence; graphic surgery; animal cruelty (view spoiler)[It's sort of necessary, I guess(?) More like animal testing. (hide spoiler)] ; grief/loss. Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Youtube

  2. 4 out of 5

    Elise (TheBookishActress)

    “If you do this, Nedra, if you choose necromancy… I cannot follow you into that darkness.” “Oh, Grey,” I said, shifting my bag onto my shoulder. “What do you know of darkness?” This book looked like a generic, if fun, YA fantasy that just happened to have this really nice and intriguing cover. And then it turned out to be a story about a wonderfully crafted antiheroine falling into darkness in the face of relentless oppression, and then Really Doing That, and I was just shook. If you liked her “If you do this, Nedra, if you choose necromancy… I cannot follow you into that darkness.” “Oh, Grey,” I said, shifting my bag onto my shoulder. “What do you know of darkness?” This book looked like a generic, if fun, YA fantasy that just happened to have this really nice and intriguing cover. And then it turned out to be a story about a wonderfully crafted antiheroine falling into darkness in the face of relentless oppression, and then Really Doing That, and I was just shook. If you liked hero-to-villain arcs in books like The Young Elites and The Grisha Trilogy and want more of that nice slide to evil, you should be reading this. Actually...I have a feeling it might be even more hardcore later on. How about I promo this book to you with one anecdote: (view spoiler)[at one point, a man shows up to Nedra trying to bring his wife back, and it’s revealed that he was the one who murdered her, and Nedra is like “fuck that” and allows her army of the dead to murder him while walking off. (hide spoiler)] Because I think about that a lot. Okay, okay. Give the Dark My Love is an antiheroine origin story, but more importantly, it’s a book about losing your people and the grief of that - the horror of losing the people who have defined your humanity. I mean, if you want to be sad for 300 hours, you will be over Nedra’s relationships with the people around her. Grey and Nedra’s romance is a sweet touch, perfectly geared to make you sad. I really loved Nedra’s family; there’s this one scene where she switches places with her sister to fool her mother, and it’s one of the most adorable and sweet things I’ve ever read. Ernesta in general is a great character, a delight in every page she’s in [and also canonically bi? which I love?] Master Ostrum is a great side character and ambiguous-support for Nedra and it’s fantastic. Which only makes it more upsetting when her family is involved in the conflict. “I love you, Nedra, but...” I didn't realize until that moment how the but cancelled out the love. Love could not exist when it came with conditions. As the book goes on, Nedra is left feeling alone, unsupported, forced to do everything herself… and is driven to levels of unspeakable morals. And despite his best efforts, Grey’s refusal to allow her to be happy with her dark side drives them apart as well. The ending wasn’t unpredictable, but it was cool as fuck. I will admit, I struggled with Grey’s point of view. It’s not the worst – he’s a compelling enough character. It’s just so clear that despite his not-insignificant impact on the narrative and its depiction of poverty, this book is not his story. In a book that is in every other way Nedra’s book, where Grey fills the role of a compelling love interest and no more, it feels odd and somewhat distracting to get his POV. Oh, speaking of Grey, here’s another thing I absolutely adored: the fact that this book is, at its core, a story about the repression of lower classes. In this world, the north of Lunar Island has been left behind the economy of the wealthier south. So when a new plague spreads in the north, richer southerners assume it’s a disease based off the dirtiness of the north. Not that this is a parallel to the real world or anything, but… this is a fantastic parallel to the real world. It’s just overall a very strong book about necromancy and antiheroine-ism. The world doesn’t always give you fairness and sometimes, you need to wrest it back. Spirits don’t always want to come back. And even the villains have a point. Also, can I just say… it really fucking goes there. Nedra is such a queen. The last hundred pages changed me as a person, obviously. But I also… there’s this one section in this book that I can’t stop thinking about because it was so deeply fucked up, and then the narrative just kept fucking describing everything. You’ll know what I mean when you get there. Anyway, I absolutely loved this, and I cannot wait to get to book two - look out for my review here! Blog | Goodreads | Twitter | Instagram | Youtube

  3. 4 out of 5

    Chelsea Humphrey

    "I love you as certain dark things are to be loved, in secret, between the shadow and the soul." -Pablo Neruda, Sonnet XVII This book is dark, heavy, and irreverent... and I love it. It is a book about necromancy, sure, but at heart it was an exposition on grief. Give The Dark My Love is one to add to my favorite books featuring an anti-hero and I think those who enjoy this type of unsettling novel will really take to it. At times it felt lyrical, and even poetic, but the writing is never so lofty "I love you as certain dark things are to be loved, in secret, between the shadow and the soul." -Pablo Neruda, Sonnet XVII This book is dark, heavy, and irreverent... and I love it. It is a book about necromancy, sure, but at heart it was an exposition on grief. Give The Dark My Love is one to add to my favorite books featuring an anti-hero and I think those who enjoy this type of unsettling novel will really take to it. At times it felt lyrical, and even poetic, but the writing is never so lofty that it feels exclusive; it's the type of writing that is easy to devour by any level of reader and consumed like a smooth drink. It goes down quick and you don't realize how hard it's hit you until you turn the last page and ponder for a bit. I saw death itself. It was a feral thing, made of smoke and shadow. It was hollow and empty. And hungry. This is a rare sort of novel where the plot takes a backseat to the atmospheric, slow building characterization without becoming stale and bland. It's definitely a slow burn, and there are few action scenes as this is more a chronicle of one girl's descent into the dark when she finds she cannot cope with the overwhelming amount of grief she's experienced in such a short life. The story had all the plot devices I love in a YA fantasy: political intrigue, magic veiled as science, the all too realistic struggle of a scholarship student amongst a sea of privileged, spoiled brats. It was the type of story I was able to get lost in, as I truly felt a part of Lunar Island and Yugen Academy every time I picked the book up. I feel like there will be a very specific target audience for this novel, as it is so dark and heavy, but for those who choose this type of read on a regular basis, I think you'll be pleased. The ending wasn't a painful cliffhanger (we do receive some closure to most of the questions pertaining to the plot of this book), but it did leave me aching for the next book to find out how the rest of the story wraps up. Highly recommended to those looking for a different kind of fantasy novel that isn't overwhelmingly romantic or riddled with cliches. *I received a review copy via the publisher.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Kai

    Give the Dark My Love more like Give the Devil my Soul, My Sanity and A Shit-ton of Zombies. “A good book will give you answers to questions you didn’t know you had. A great book will give you questions to answers you thought you knew.” Phew, that was morbid. In the best way. Don't let this picturesque cover fool you. This book is dark. And when I say that, I mean do-not-snack-while-reading dark. You better buy some thick skin at Walmart first. I must say that this book piqued my interest but somehow Give the Dark My Love more like Give the Devil my Soul, My Sanity and A Shit-ton of Zombies. “A good book will give you answers to questions you didn’t know you had. A great book will give you questions to answers you thought you knew.” Phew, that was morbid. In the best way. Don't let this picturesque cover fool you. This book is dark. And when I say that, I mean do-not-snack-while-reading dark. You better buy some thick skin at Walmart first. I must say that this book piqued my interest but somehow failed to captivate me at first. It took me a few chapters to really get into it but then I could not stop reading. I read whenever I found a spare minute. Now, the book is not perfect. I think the pacing is too fast, and the plot would have been sufficient for two books. It would have given the author a chance to develop the characters and especially their relationships. A great many revelations and minor plot twist have been put in one novel, and I think it would have seemed more realistic if the events had had more time to unfold. It felt a little forced at times. I liked that romance played a role in this book but never overpowered the main plot. This is not a story about star-crossed lovers but about death and sacrifice. The death part is quite gruesome by the way. The descriptions are very detailed, there are a lot of dead bodies, reawakened dead bodies and, well, necromancy. I great detail. Do not take this lightly. I am pretty sure this book will be banned from a lot of libraries. Which is a shame because it tells the story of a young, determined woman who will stop at nothing to fulfil her dreams, no matter how many obstacles people will put in her way. She is passionate, loves her family and does not shut her eyes and ears to injustice and neglect. I must admit that the ending was slightly predictable. I saw it coming. Again, more time (and pages) would have improved this story a lot. After so many things happened in the first book, I have no idea what the sequel will be about. But I will make sure to read it. Find more of my books on Instagram

  5. 5 out of 5

    Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin

    That was pretty good. And it went to some dark places! Lovely cover as well! Happy Reading! Mel 🖤🐺🐾

  6. 5 out of 5

    Carrie

    Give the Dark My Love by Beth Revis is the first book in the new young adult fantasy series by the same title. The content of this series is on the darker side with dealing with things like a plague and necromancy but I’d also warn of animal harm (rats) for those that would be bothered. Nedra Brysstain is from the poorer area of Lunar Island in the northern territory but all of her life she’s wanted nothing other than to study medical alchemy. When signs of a new disease starts hitting the north Give the Dark My Love by Beth Revis is the first book in the new young adult fantasy series by the same title. The content of this series is on the darker side with dealing with things like a plague and necromancy but I’d also warn of animal harm (rats) for those that would be bothered. Nedra Brysstain is from the poorer area of Lunar Island in the northern territory but all of her life she’s wanted nothing other than to study medical alchemy. When signs of a new disease starts hitting the north Nedra becomes even more determined to help and when an anonymous benefactor supplies a scholarship to the prestigious Yugen Academy Nedra promises her family she will return. When Nedra arrives she doesn’t quite fit in at the academy but Greggori “Grey” Astor does become her only friend. Grey had been the top of the class before Nedra came along and before long the two are working closely together under their master studying to find a cure for the plague that has also begun to overcome the city. Give the Dark My Love was one of those books that once I sat down and begun to read I just didn’t want to put it down. As I mentioned there is a bit of animal harm in the way alchemy is portrayed in this story and I wasn’t a huge fan of it although I understood the concept the author came up with but that really is the only reason I’m rating at 4.5 stars instead of 5. The rest of the story was rather intense and then the end… oh my, pretzel twisting time so yes, this is one I’d recommend checking out and will look forward to seeing what happens next. I received an advance copy from the publisher via Penguin’s First to Read. For more reviews please visit https://carriesbookreviews.com/

  7. 5 out of 5

    Nina

    *Thanks again to Penguin Random House for sending me an ARC of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.* Nedra Brysstain is a seventeen-year-old girl from the northern territories of the Lunar Island. She likes her life up there but as a deadly plague starts spreading through the North, Nedra decides to leave her home to learn the trade of medicinal alchemy at the prestigious Yugen Academy. Nedra is determined to find a cure for the plague but as the disease begins spreading fas *Thanks again to Penguin Random House for sending me an ARC of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.* Nedra Brysstain is a seventeen-year-old girl from the northern territories of the Lunar Island. She likes her life up there but as a deadly plague starts spreading through the North, Nedra decides to leave her home to learn the trade of medicinal alchemy at the prestigious Yugen Academy. Nedra is determined to find a cure for the plague but as the disease begins spreading faster and faster, she becomes desperate to find the needed cure and suddenly finds herself diving into alchemy’s most dangerous corners and ultimately turns to the most forbidden practice of all, necromancy. I’d never read anything by Beth Revis prior to starting this novel but the synopsis of it sounded extremely interesting which is why I originally requested an ARC of the book. And the first 60% of “Give the Dark my Love” were indeed great and I would’ve easily given this book at least four stars if it had continued being that good which unfortunately wasn’t the case. At first I was really interested in the story especially because I have only read about two or three books about necromancy in my life and so it was very cool to learn more about the topic. The plot during the first half was also very interesting and I pretty much flew through the chapters because I always needed to know what would happen next. But around the 60% mark, the plot became really slow and I began not really enjoying this book anymore because many scenes just really dragged on. As for the characters, they were all pretty interesting and I actually liked all of them. Either because they were just very likable, or because they just fit the story very well. But it was the main character, Nedra, who ended up acting in a way that made me enjoy the last 40% of “Give the Dark my Love” a lot less than the beginning of it. She was very likable and interesting at first, but at some point she just began doing things that often made me roll my eyes or shake my head. Especially between the 70% and 90% mark of the novel, I felt like she was often being quite unreasonable which suddenly turned her into a character that I began disliking. Furthermore, during the first three or four chapters, I also had a bit of a problem with Beth Revis’s writing style but thankfully, it either got better in the subsequent chapters or I just got used to it quite quickly. Overall, this was still definitely a book I mostly enjoyed reading which is why I’m giving it three out of five stars. As I’ve said, the first half was definitely a lot better than the second half and made me want to read the entire series. But the second half just kind of “destroyed” the story for me and I unfortunately have to say that I probably won’t be picking up the sequel once it comes out next year. instagram || my blog || twitter

  8. 5 out of 5

    Cinda

    Breaking Bad meets The Walking Dead in this twisty thriller.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Jodi Meadows

    That got dark.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Julie

    DO NOT MISS THIS BOOK! This is necromancy fantasy at its finest and its heroine has one of the best descending character arcs I've seen. My official review: "GIVE THE DARK MY LOVE asks: How far will we venture into darkness for the ones we love? In the face of a deadly plague, Nedra's journey from compassionate medical student to ruthless revolutionary is stunning and shocking to behold." - Julie C. Dao, author of FOREST OF A THOUSAND LANTERNS

  11. 5 out of 5

    Cindy ✩☽ Savage Queen ♔

    3/19/18 Hmm...I'm actually feeling this cover and the title is still one of my favs --- Ooo necromancy sounds interesting...

  12. 4 out of 5

    Chelsea

    This book is bleak and dismal and pushes moral ambiguity a bit. So basically this is my kind of book. Main plot points that suck me in: takes place in a school of alchemy, a plague sweeping the nation, necromancy, pretty graphic medical lessons, seemingly strong moral values that get flipped on their heads. Well, apparently I like reading about all the dark and gritty stuff that most people stay away from. But if that seems like your jam, definitely check this book out. It’s a slow burn plot of This book is bleak and dismal and pushes moral ambiguity a bit. So basically this is my kind of book. Main plot points that suck me in: takes place in a school of alchemy, a plague sweeping the nation, necromancy, pretty graphic medical lessons, seemingly strong moral values that get flipped on their heads. Well, apparently I like reading about all the dark and gritty stuff that most people stay away from. But if that seems like your jam, definitely check this book out. It’s a slow burn plot of life, death, morals, politics, and medicine. Highly recommend to you sickos like me who love that stuff.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Jessica Khoury

    Nedra shines as an innocent, hopeful girl who dreams of helping her people as a healer and alchemist, but who instead finds herself on a dark and forbidden path that will cost her her innocence and so much more. Watching Nedra's descent into darkness was truly thrilling; THIS is how you write an anti-hero. Brava!

  14. 5 out of 5

    Chelsea ❤Peril Please❤

    *ARC Provided by Penguin Teen and Razorbill for an honest review* DNF This book was just too....Trigger happy for me. As much as I ADORE this author, I chose not to finish this because of how many things bothered me. I don't mind dark, but sometimes an author can get too dark, and that's what happened here. :( For more of my reviews, please visit:

  15. 5 out of 5

    Angelica

    When I saw that this book was written by Beth Revis I knew that I had to get my hands on it. For those of you new to the YA book world, Beth Revis is the author of Across the Universe, a sci-fi, young adult space opera that came out in 2011. Basically, that means that I've been looking forward to more of Revis' writing. Now, here we are with Give the Dark my Love. And while no, I did not love it, I think certainly was worth the wait! I don't know what it says about me but I do love a good villain When I saw that this book was written by Beth Revis I knew that I had to get my hands on it. For those of you new to the YA book world, Beth Revis is the author of Across the Universe, a sci-fi, young adult space opera that came out in 2011. Basically, that means that I've been looking forward to more of Revis' writing. Now, here we are with Give the Dark my Love. And while no, I did not love it, I think certainly was worth the wait! I don't know what it says about me but I do love a good villain story. Stories in which we see someone slowly descend into darkness. Seeing the subtle changes in a person, their goodness tearing down, their light slowly fading until they are but a shadow of their former selves and only darkness remains. And you know what? This book delivered that perfectly. I really enjoyed the character of Nedra and watching her slow turn towards the dark side. She was fiercely determined and not the type of heroine to lose herself to the obvious inta-love that was trying to make its way onto the page. Sadly, Nedra alone couldn't make me love it. When Rendz and I discussed the novel we agreed on the fact that Gray was kind of useless. He wasn't a bad character, per se. He was just sort of 'there'. In a way, I liked that Gray's role was nonintrusive because it gave Nedra space to develop without being hampered down by a love interest. And I am glad that this book put romance on the back burner. Still, if a character has a role such as Gray's, he should still be seen as important to the moving of the story. And Gray, for the majority of the book, was not! Even his POV  felt like it lacked a true connection and relevance to the advancement of the plot! I also don't really enjoy routines in books. When a character follows certain routines in a novel I tend to get bored. I understand that the character has job to do in finding the cure and going to the hospital and all, I just don't want to see it quite so often. The last thing that did not help the book was the mood I was in while reading it. I took a few weeks off from blogging and reading in general when I picked this up and ended up leaving it behind for a few days. Is it possible that I might have enjoyed it more had I read it at another time? Possibly. The world may never know. Still, you might want to take that into account when deciding whether or not to read it. Overall, I enjoyed it. I thought it was an interesting read with an interesting main character. I did generally enjoy the writing and did enjoy the ending as well. I'm really looking forward to book two next year! Also, just so you know before going into it, this book is a very, very light fantasy. One might even call it paranormal than a full-on fantasy novel. It does also share some horror elements perhaps. I've seen several people complain about the lack of fantasy so I thought I'd warn you!

  16. 4 out of 5

    Shelflove

    Wow wow wow this book really was incredible. This book is not about romance, unlike the title suggests. This book is about succumbing to the darkness. I absolutely loved watching Nedra’s journey and how, in her quest for good, she becomes enamored by darkness.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Joshua Gabriel (조수아)

    Was this what necromancy was? Raising the bodies but losing the souls? What point was there in that? Beth Revis was one of the authors who made me appreciate science fiction. I really enjoyed reading the Across the Universe trilogy when I was in college, and I was excited to read more of her work. She published a contemporary novel a year or so ago, but my waning interest in the genre failed to persuade me to pick it up. So when I learned that she was delving into fantasy, my favorite genre of al Was this what necromancy was? Raising the bodies but losing the souls? What point was there in that? Beth Revis was one of the authors who made me appreciate science fiction. I really enjoyed reading the Across the Universe trilogy when I was in college, and I was excited to read more of her work. She published a contemporary novel a year or so ago, but my waning interest in the genre failed to persuade me to pick it up. So when I learned that she was delving into fantasy, my favorite genre of all time, I was thrilled. Although Give the Dark My Love had a predominantly fantastical story, it reminded me of Train to Busan, a popular Korean horror movie. (Just recalling all those zombies still makes me want to cover my neck.) Nedra, the female protagonist, was an alchemist who practiced necromancy. After being bombarded with tragedies, she gained the ability to "resurrect" and control the dead. Nedra was a benevolent character at the beginning, but in the end, she was more like an anti-hero. Basically, this book perfectly illustrated how good girls could go bad. Nedra's academic life was fascinating for me. I loved how she trumped the boys in Yugen Academy with her intelligence, proving that her scholarship didn't mean that she was a mere charity case. In a way, Nedra was similar to Hermione Granger, bookish and always willing to share her knowledge with others. With that in mind, you shouldn't be surprised that I liked her a lot; I will always have a soft spot for my fellow nerds. However, my feelings changed a bit as she gradually succumbed to the dark side. I didn't dislike her, exactly, but I was perturbed by her regression (as intentional as it was). As for Grey, the love interest, he was pretty unremarkable. He showed signs of infatuation early on just because he thought that Nedra was "different." So cliche, right? I bet he would fall in love with anyone who wasn't typical. Also, I felt jaded about how he didn't want to be anything like his controlling father (another surprise there). Looking on the bright side, I liked how he became Nedra's moral compass. Because of him, I have hope for her redemption. The climax was the best part of the novel. I had no idea who was the real culprit behind the plague/curse killing off the lower class. It came to the point that I suspected Grey himself. Hahaha. Silly me. I shouldn't have expected the worse of him. When the big reveal happened, I was stupefied. In fact, I had to reread it because I couldn't process the revelation immediately. Kudos to the author's excellent plotting! All in all, Give the Dark My Love was equally saddening and entertaining. The unique magic system and political intrigue counterbalanced all the grief and bloodshed. I highly recommend it to readers searching for an insightful anti-hero story.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Solomon ~ TheBookishKing

    There is a line in where the main character says "not papa, not papa." And I immediately thought about Johnny Johnny and I have officially reached the Lowest Point in my life. But anyways, that ending was freaking dope just the whole beginning and middle I hated beyond words.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Annemieke / A Dance with Books

    3,5 stars Thank you to netgalley and the publisher for the review copy in exchange for an honest review Sometimes a book leaves you conflicted. Give the Dark My Love is one of those. On the one hand I enjoyed reading it, but on the other hand I have a lot of bits and pieces that didn’t work for me. Let me start with the writing itself which was good. The prologue gave us a taste of what was to come and then it build itself up slowly, becoming an atmospheric horror book. However I did find the b 3,5 stars Thank you to netgalley and the publisher for the review copy in exchange for an honest review Sometimes a book leaves you conflicted. Give the Dark My Love is one of those. On the one hand I enjoyed reading it, but on the other hand I have a lot of bits and pieces that didn’t work for me. Let me start with the writing itself which was good. The prologue gave us a taste of what was to come and then it build itself up slowly, becoming an atmospheric horror book. However I did find the build-up lacking. This has to do with details. Nedra is trying to find a cure with her mentor and for a good portion of this book she works in the hospital or works in the labs with him. But there are never any specifics on what they do in the lab to find a cure. It is just kind of left up in the air. It made the leap they made towards the origin and cure of the plague somewhat unbelievable. I don’t think the explanation was on board for it either. And there are other specifics surrounding this plague that bother me. The ending with it was just convenient to me. Another element was that this book was told in dual point of view. For the majority of the book we get Nedra’s point of view. But every now and then Grey, her love interest, pops in with a point of view. Honestly his chapters were pointless up to the end and even then something else could have been done with the information he provided. His point of view was there to offer us more insight on the politics but that unfortunately failed. There was not nearly enough on it to give us a good feel for the revolution behind the scenes. Or why Lunar Island so desperately wants to become apart from the emperor. I get it had it been the poor, but this revolution wasn’t coming from them. Having said that I still enjoyed this book though. The prologue made me so happy I decided to give this a chance because I liked the necromancy. I liked how it took something from the necromancer. That portion was just really well done for me. Nedra was an interesting person who fought for what she wanted. She never really gave way to all the distractions surrounding her (like the instalove) and kept her nose pointed in the direction of wanting to find a cure for the plague, about learning all she could about it. Too much even so. The decisions she made were morally gray, asking us if she wasn’t becoming a villain in herself. Grey on the other hand was the perfect poster boy and it made him so incredibly bland. He never really managed to properly stand up for Nedra (not that she needed it) or truly support her. I am very interested in seeing how this continues in a next installment. While there is no cliffhanger and the base of this plot has come to an end, I am very curious to see where Nedra goes next.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Lisa (Remarkablylisa)

    MY RATING: 3/5 STARS I received an arc from Penguin Random House Canada in exchange for a honest review. When I first saw this book, I expected a high fantasy tale infused with an intoxicating love that would sure leave me to be gripping the pages. Instead, I was left with an insta-love story involving a strong heroine that later turned out to be the villain and at least 200 pages of her going back and forth to treat patients at the hospital with little to no supernatural powers. So, to say that t MY RATING: 3/5 STARS I received an arc from Penguin Random House Canada in exchange for a honest review. When I first saw this book, I expected a high fantasy tale infused with an intoxicating love that would sure leave me to be gripping the pages. Instead, I was left with an insta-love story involving a strong heroine that later turned out to be the villain and at least 200 pages of her going back and forth to treat patients at the hospital with little to no supernatural powers. So, to say that this was high fantasy would be an understatement. It's more of a paranormal story featuring necromancy and rituals. Our main character, Nedra, really wanted to be a alchemist. She wanted to find a cure to treat the ongoing plague that has spread across parts of the country. People were dying all around her. A sickness that ate away limbs, seeped through the veins, and claimed hearts and brains of many innocent. Nedra was an extremely dedicated character. She devoted most of her time while at the prestigious school to help alleviate the pain of those who were suffering through what she learned during lessons. Like I said earlier, it was 200 pages of it. 200 pages involving her getting verbally abused by her elitist classmates and her going back and forth to hospitals getting abused by delusional patients. It was interesting because I knew there had to be something more to the story. The more and more Nedra studies to find a cure, the more she studies necromancy--something very illegal and will lead to execution. When the closest members in her family fall ill, she became so absorbed into finding a way to save them that she tampers with life and death. Nedra also has a love interest who was named Grey. It was told in dual perspectives but 95% of the book was Nedra. And to be honest, Grey didn't need any more extra pages. He was just not that interesting and nor did he have a complex background as Nedra. Grey was more of an perfect character that just existed to look pretty. His problems were following the footsteps his father laid out for him while Nedra went out and actually tried to fix the problem. He was cute but boring in the end. I also didn't appreciate the fact that it involved a very obvious insta-love. In the end, I had to force myself to finish the last 100 pages of the book. It was just getting frustrating that nothing happened or the thing that I knew was going to happen would only happen so very close to the end which left an unsatisfying ending. The book would have been better if it focused more on the plot-twist rather than bedside nursing lol. MY RECOMMENDATION: Skip it. The book is too thick and bland to sit there for a day to read

  21. 4 out of 5

    Fae Crate

    Beth has always been a favorite author of mine and this hasn't stopped the love. Very interesting to read from the accused bad guy for once! A beautiful and unique read!

  22. 5 out of 5

    Sara

    Questo è il libro perfetto per tutti coloro che amano leggere di antieroi. Nesta, la protagonista è una ragazza di un villaggio povero che riesce ad accedere alla più prestigiosa scuola di alchemia medica del paese grazie alla borsa di studio di un benefattore misterioso. L'unico scopo della sua vita è infatti trovare la causa/cura per la strana epidemia che sta decimando la popolazione e che si manifesta con necrosi delle estremità e in seguito morte imminente. Il libro intero parla della sua s Questo è il libro perfetto per tutti coloro che amano leggere di antieroi. Nesta, la protagonista è una ragazza di un villaggio povero che riesce ad accedere alla più prestigiosa scuola di alchemia medica del paese grazie alla borsa di studio di un benefattore misterioso. L'unico scopo della sua vita è infatti trovare la causa/cura per la strana epidemia che sta decimando la popolazione e che si manifesta con necrosi delle estremità e in seguito morte imminente. Il libro intero parla della sua storia, di come certi avvenimenti spingano l'essere umano ad abbandonare i limiti autoimposti. Mi è piaciuto moltissimo proprio perché da studentessa di una branca medica spesso mi chiedo quali barriere (etiche e non) sarei disposta a oltrepassare se ciò significasse salvare chi amo o se sarei disposta a sacrificare i pochi per salvare molti. Nesta si fa le mie stessa domande, ma nel suo caso la vita la costringe a scoprire le risposte. In realtà la storia parla di necromanzia e alchemia, entrambi argomenti interessanti! L'unico difetto sono i capitoli dal punto di vista di Gray, abbastanza noiosi, e il romance completamente inutile. Non vedo l'ora di leggere il prossimo libro! Il livello di inglese è medio/basso.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Rebecca

    You would think given the title, I would have been prepared for a heavy read. However, my continuous thought throughout this book was: "This book is so morbid.." Despite the bleakness, I thought it was a fantastic read. The first chapter had me riveted and hooked on the storyline. After that, the flow of the book slows and like Nedra, I was slowly immersed into this intense world. The balance between action and character development is well balanced. Most fantasies shy away from first person POV You would think given the title, I would have been prepared for a heavy read. However, my continuous thought throughout this book was: "This book is so morbid.." Despite the bleakness, I thought it was a fantastic read. The first chapter had me riveted and hooked on the storyline. After that, the flow of the book slows and like Nedra, I was slowly immersed into this intense world. The balance between action and character development is well balanced. Most fantasies shy away from first person POVS, but I enjoyed having Grey and Nedra as the narrators. Often times, the gruesome plot is difficult, but the characters themselves had me invested in the story. The ending is explosive and left me staring at my iPad for ten minutes. I cannot wait for for the follow-up to this duet. If you like darker YA/fantasy, this is one I'd definitely recommend. Thank you to Penguin's First to Read for my advanced review copy.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Rachael

    1) i loved rebel rising so much that i am immediately intrigued by beth revis' work 2) this cover and title are amazing 3) story sounds interesting and i looooove alchemy as a plot point, yaaassss

  25. 4 out of 5

    Kristen

    This one had a rocky start for me but I think it was due to my reading mood. I put it aside and came back to it and finished it in a sitting! It kept me flipping pages and trying to guess what would happen next. I loved the set up for the ending and can’t wait for a book 2!!

  26. 4 out of 5

    Christy

    4.5 stars!

  27. 4 out of 5

    Dania

    Wow wow wow Incredible. This book is not about romance, unlike the title suggests. This book is about succumbing to the darkness. I absolutely loved watching Nedra’s journey and how, in her quest for good, she becomes enamored by darkness.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Joleen (starlightbooktales)

    3.5 RTC

  29. 4 out of 5

    Katelin

    ACTUAL: 4.25/5 * received an ARC from the publisher exchange for an honest review * This book really surprised me. After beginning rather slow, the action picked up, the darkness crept in, and Nedra's character truly began to shine. The characters in this novel really impressed me, I found Nedra's development throughout the novel to be engaging, and it became clear where - and who, her priorities lied with. Her strong family loyalties and desire for saving the poor village members that raised her ACTUAL: 4.25/5 * received an ARC from the publisher exchange for an honest review * This book really surprised me. After beginning rather slow, the action picked up, the darkness crept in, and Nedra's character truly began to shine. The characters in this novel really impressed me, I found Nedra's development throughout the novel to be engaging, and it became clear where - and who, her priorities lied with. Her strong family loyalties and desire for saving the poor village members that raised her led to her ultimate demise - or to the rise of the undead. The unique twists and turns really intrigued me, and I was hooked until the last page. I liked the rotating POV's, it made it easier to understand Nedra's and Grey's thoughts and feel their pain. There are some extremely dark elements in this novel, and I personally found them to be a bit too much. However, I am sure that readers who adore bold and dark tales will enjoy this novel very much. I am very excited to read the next in the series.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Destiny | myhoneyreads

    4/5 stars Synopsis: Ernesta leaves home to study at a prestigious school, hoping to cure a sickness blackening the lands and killing the people. While there, she discovers the truth of this disease, and takes a turn for the worst. This was a great fantasy. Funny, sweet, interesting, and full of plot twists, it was just everything I liked in a book. The downward character arc was fantastic and I loved this aspect of the book. Very good read. I definitely recommend. *free copy provided by Penguin’s F 4/5 stars Synopsis: Ernesta leaves home to study at a prestigious school, hoping to cure a sickness blackening the lands and killing the people. While there, she discovers the truth of this disease, and takes a turn for the worst. This was a great fantasy. Funny, sweet, interesting, and full of plot twists, it was just everything I liked in a book. The downward character arc was fantastic and I loved this aspect of the book. Very good read. I definitely recommend. *free copy provided by Penguin’s First To Read program*

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