Title: All the Stars and the Teeth
Author: Adalyn Grace
Pub. Date: February 4th 2020
Genre: YA Fantasy
Pages: 384 Pages
*ARC provided by Publisher in exchange for an honest review*
Honestly! the YA Fantasy I’ve been picking up lately has truly been keeping my internal flame for the genre. I just knew All the Stars and the Teeth was a MUST read for me once I heard mention of Pirates & Mermaids cause they happen to be my fave types of fictional characters. I was NOT expecting to love it as much as I did despite it featuring one hell of a unlikeable female MC yet here we are *shoulder shrug* haha! we get this expansive world where kingdoms are separated by the magic practiced by its inhabitants and only 1 magic per Kingdom is allowed. Our MC Amora is soon to be put to the test in order to obtain the title of High Animancer. In this world, a royal title is not inherited but instead the “heir” must prove their worth in claiming the crown. We meet Amora as she prepares for the big demonstration of magic she is to show her people that will in turn solidify her ascension to the throne after her father. Things go ALL the way wrong which then sets off a series of events that place Amora aboard a ship with Bastian, a sassy easy on the eyes Pirate. However, things get further complicated when Ferrick the man she’s been betrothed to also hops on said ship.
Having had her demonstration of magic go terribly wrong, Amora fears she will be killed by her people. She makes a run for it in hopes of making a comeback to convince her people she is worthy of another chance. What Amora doesn’t anticipate is uncovering some unsavory truths about the state of her kingdom & its affairs. Truths about her magic that go back in time to the very beginning & challenge all she’s been made to believe. We see her embark on this sort of adventure that humbles her & redefines what it means to be a good leader. She sees first hand the state of the other lands within her kingdom which ends up having a sobering effect.
Although the adventure itself is A+ as is the magic system, I’ve always been a reader who loves a great cast of characters. Amora may have started off as hella unlikeable but by the end of this story I grew to have a deep admiration for her.She is fiercely protective of her kingdom & confident without a doubt that she is the right person for the job. Bastion & Ferrick may be complete opposites but I found something to love in each of them. While Bastion may have won me over with his quick witted responses, Ferrick with his gentlemanly ways also wiggled his way into my heart. Ferrick is a Suntosan which means he has healing capabilities & seeing his magic at play was pretty cool. Our Mermaid Vatea joins the crew in the latter half of the book but GODDESS she is! her song will call to the hearts of any within earshot & her ruthlessness is never something she shies away from. LOVED seeing Amora find a true friend in Vatea & could only hope we get more from bad a** character *fingers crossed* The character development, I felt was done well across the board.
Lastly, I have to mention how Adalyn Grace seriously nailed pretty gruesome imagery when it came to Amora’s Soul Magic. Our MC’s magic deals with soul binding which means she obtains body parts as a method of binding. These scenes aren’t for theft of heart but personally I felt it really did up the magic system. The duality of magic (light & dark) is always at play in the background which I found SUPER interesting. The inclusion of curses & elemental magic as well really brought this world to life & gave it a rich feel. There were times while I was reading I couldn’t help but think of Avatar the Last Airbender in the sense of world building & that’s a VERY good thing for this Avatar fan. The way we leave off in this adventure has me truly anticipating any news of the sequel, I will be patiently awaiting its arrival 🖤
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