Howdy people! I welcome Suresh Patel to my blog today as he treats us to a book review of Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo. I first interacted with Suresh on instagram for my December 2019 book love. In his own words, ” I am a fantasy nerd who reads other genres to remain sane. I am a Computer science engineer working as a low-key content writer so that I can read and write more.”
Title: Ninth House
Genre: Young Adult / Fantasy Fiction
Author: Leigh Bardugo
“We all have spaces we keep blank.”
“People didn’t need magic to be terrible to each other.”
“There were always excuses for why girls died.”
― Leigh Bardugo, Ninth House
I had read 4 classics back to back and had to pick up a light read. A reader friend of mine suggested me to read this one. And I knew Leigh Bardugo’s work first hand because I had read the ‘Six of Crows’. And being a fantasy nerd, I didn’t think twice before starting the read.
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The book is the story about Galaxy Stern aka Alex, found amid a brutal crime scene; an LA teen who gets a chance to ‘LIVE’ for once instead of surviving after having a near-death experience. A possibility of Life at YALE University. Maybe not all butterflies and rainbows, but who has never seen anything other than drugs, abuse, and failures; she takes the opportunity. And it’s not like she has anyone left her in LA except her mother. And also because she can finally get the answers of all the things only she can see and sense: Ghosts or as the people who need her because of this gift called ‘The Grays’.
Set in the settings of YALE University, Leigh has articulately injected different fantasy elements like magic, secret societies, shapeshifters and demons throughout the books. Alex joins the university and under her handsome mentor ‘Darlington’, learns more about magic so that she can keep a lookout on the societies which is her job. Juggling between her regular life and the secret life, she keeps tabs on the rituals by members of the societies. To not let them interfere with normal humans!
Although the start is slow, the novel gets more engaging as it progresses to the middle, when a ‘Tara Hutchins’ is killed right after Darlington goes missing. Alex takes the job to unravel the mysteries behind both the incidents which are hushed by the nine secret societies.
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Lasting Impression on me:
Where do you go when the world fucks you left and right! And it’s not just about mundane difficulties one faces; abuse, rape, and trauma are the real ones. Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo is for the survivors out here in the real fighting the real battles.
Leigh wrote a believing story and it’s the girl who doesn’t fit with the normal that hits me. I know this is a very common theme but I loved it nonetheless. Leigh doesn’t hold back in pointing out the crimes against women and how rich and white people abuse their powers magic or no magic. Her take on mental health issues like PTSD, anxiety, and depression brings out the best of the book.
The premise, story and the way the book heals are really impressive. This is the first book of the new series and Leigh’s first take on Adult Fantasy. This book has also been awarded as the Goodreads best fantasy book of the year. Whooo!
I am giving Ninth House 4 stars out of 5.
The reason it falls short of 5 stars is that Leigh didn’t give justice to some of the scenes in the book. Some of the events taking place had so much potential to impact the readers but she failed to do so. And this book should have been a lot shorter. You can just skip paragraphs sometimes and it wouldn’t affect the plot. It looked like they are just there to increase the pages.
Loved this review and would like to have an honest review of your book by me; please drop me a mail on email@example.com with :
- A sample section of the book (about 25 pages)
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Please note that I would require a physical copy of the book for the review and will take 100% advance of the fee.
You can read about My Bookish Hits & Misses of 2019 here