Review: This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab || Soft Boys and Monstrous Girls

This Savage Song

Monsters of Verity #1

Victoria Schwab

this savage song ve schwab

There’s no such thing as safe in a city at war, a city overrun with monsters. In this dark urban fantasy from author Victoria Schwab, a young woman and a young man must choose whether to become heroes or villains—and friends or enemies—with the future of their home at stake. The first of two books.

Kate Harker and August Flynn are the heirs to a divided city—a city where the violence has begun to breed actual monsters. All Kate wants is to be as ruthless as her father, who lets the monsters roam free and makes the humans pay for his protection. All August wants is to be human, as good-hearted as his own father, to play a bigger role in protecting the innocent—but he’s one of the monsters. One who can steal a soul with a simple strain of music. When the chance arises to keep an eye on Kate, who’s just been kicked out of her sixth boarding school and returned home, August jumps at it. But Kate discovers August’s secret, and after a failed assassination attempt the pair must flee for their lives.

Publisher: Greenwillow Books

Published: July 5th 2016

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Trigger Warning

Gore, Violence, Murder, Death, Mass Shooting, Blood, Torture


“I live in a world where shadows have teeth. It’s not a particularly relaxing environment.” 

This may be a predisposed review with me being a big Schwab fan, but is it any kind of surprise that I loved this?

The plot was a little weak— we’re following August and Kate on the run after a failed assassination attempt in a closed off V-City. So of course, I’m going to be drawn to the characters and their interactions. But, I can’t say the world wasn’t interesting— it unquestionably was; it was a bit of a character study in a way?

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“You wanted to feel alive, right? It doesn’t matter if you’re monster or human. Living hurts.” 

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Because if monsters are created from people’s sins, whose to judge if what you did was truly evil? Are there exceptions? And with August who is a monster desperate to be a human and Kate who is a human doing monstrous things for survival, it leads to some self-reflection and I was all the way here for it.

Now, unpopular opinion— I liked Kate more than I liked August. I’m here for soft boys and all, but I’m even more here for ambitious girls and Kate definitely was. Both of their backstories were heartbreaking-— August being created from a school shooting and Kate losing her mother leading to her being deaf in one ear and having to harden herself, but something about Kate drew me in. However, their hate-to-friend relationship was great. I mean, I may be biased, but some of the best friendships happen while you’re on the run, right?

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Corsai, Corsai, tooth and claw,

Shadow and bone will eat you raw.

Malchai, Malchai, sharp and sly,

Smile and bite and drink you dry.

Sunai, Sunai, eyes like coal,

Sing you a song and steal your soul.

Monsters, monsters, big and small,

They’re gonna come and eat you all!” 

I mention often how much I love the villains Schwab creates and these are no different. In a city full of monsters, we have Callum Harker, a human who lets the monsters run free and runs the city through fear alone. I wish we would have gotten more back story on him— how he got into power, what he was like before this, things like that.

Yet even though he was the main big bad, it was Sloane, his Malchai was the one who truly caught my interest. He just gives off this vibe that things aren’t as they seem, people you think are in control really aren’t and though he’s under a humans thumb, you should still keep an eye on him. I loved it.

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The ending definitely left me with so many predictions for book two. It leaves off on a cliffhanger, but there’s definitely more to explore and things surely aren’t resolved yet.

But of course, I’ll be first in line to get into books two again, what’s new?

13 thoughts on “Review: This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab || Soft Boys and Monstrous Girls”

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