A review by corabookworm
A Day of Fallen Night by Samantha Shannon

adventurous challenging dark emotional hopeful inspiring tense
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated


Initial Reaction

While a bit complicated at times, this book was much easier to follow than Prioryof the Orange Tree, which made it EVEN better. The characters had so much depth—I felt for, related to, and loved every one of thema—and the story itself was perfectly constructed over hundreds of pages and multiple POVs. The court intrigue in the first half was perfectly balanced with the action and drama of the second, and constant conflict made this book a page turner despite the length. If you like high fantasy (books like Game of Thrones, Realm Breaker, etc.), I cannot recommend this series enough times. The complex characters and spectacularly intricate worldbuilding are absolute perfection. 

Full Reveiw
After reading (and loving) Priory of the Orange Tree, I had high expectations for this book. It surpassed every single one. 

A Day of Fallen Night is a vibrant, complex novel brimming with Samantha Shannon’s signature, intricate worldbuilding and diverse, well-developed characters. The story follows Gloiran, a young princess of Inys, Tanuva, a sister of the Priory, Wulf, a warrior from the North, and Dumai, a newly discovered heir to the East. All of their lives are suddenly and dramatically changed by the eruption of the Dreadmount and the new threats it brings.

While I adored the characters of Priory, the cast of ADOFN was even better. I felt for, related to, and adored every POV character, and their various partners and friends were delightful as well. Glorian is my soulmate, and Tanuva’s perspective as an older character with more experience was absolutely fascinating. All the romance was beautifully constructed, between the loving, established relationships and the ones that developed over the course of the story (my favorite, of course, were the wonderful enemies-to-lovers sapphics <3). And the amount of queer rep! Ahh!

The story itself was also fantastic. The overlapping plotlines wove into an brilliant mix of tense political intrigue, page-turning action, and romance. It was especially cool getting to make connections to things mentioned/featured in Priory, and see how the world changed over time. And every bit of this book, from the politics to the dragons to the swordfighting (what a beautiful combination!), was written incredibly well.

I was awestruck by the talent Samantha Shannon displayed in this book. If you enjoy high fantasy books like Game of Thrones or Lord of the Rings, with large casts and expansive worldbuilding, you will love this one. <3