Thank you so much to Netgalley and the publisher for giving me an ARC in exchange for an honest review
Overall: 5/5 Stars
Plot and Themes: 5/5
Awesomeness Factor: 5/5
Review in a Nutshell: Have you ever felt like a book was made for you? That is how I feel about Down Comes the Night.
[Related: We Free the Stars by Hafsah Faizal – I Don’t Know How To Move On (Sands of Arawiya #2 Review)]
// Content Warning: Violence, Death, Torture, Gore, Drugging Someone, War Themes, Murder, Kidnapping/Abduction, Medical Procedures //
Release Date: 3/2/2021
Publisher: Wednesday Books
Page Count: 400
Down Comes the Night is a gothic YA fantasy following Wren, a powerful healer in the Queen’s Guard who is dismissed after she makes a decision the Queen deems “reckless”. But when she receives a letter from a Lord of a neighboring kingdom, she travels to his estate to heal his servant from a mysterious illness. But when she gets there, she discovers the servant is actually her kingdom’s most renowned enemy.
Writing & Setting
While this book is technically a fantasy standalone, it reads like a historical novel. Down Comes the Night has an atmospheric feel to it, ominous and foreboding. However, there’s still humor and levity within the darker tone. The world itself is beautifully crafted, with each kingdom complex and unique. I was absolutely fascinated with the magic system and would love more books in this world exploring it even further.
Even though I would love more books (or even just one more chapter… please?), Down Comes the Night works well as a standalone. All major plot points are perfectly wrapped up (without feeling too perfect, of course).
The plot itself is gripping and addictive, with the pacing perfectly fitting for the tone of the book. It starts slightly slower-paced but picks up towards the end as the stakes get higher and higher.
The romance and character development come first and foremost, but there’s also a great mystery unfolding as well. It’s not the most shocking, but there are still small twists thrown here and there that add to it.
The characters are what make this book special.
Wren is our central protagonist, and I loved her journey. In a world of YA fantasy books with unapologetically ruthless and fierce female protagonists, Wren’s empathy and kindness stands out. There’s a lot of discussion over whether her emotions make her weak, and if her empathy is a detriment, and I was so happy to see that. This book is dedicated to the “girls who feel too much” and I feel like it has such an important message.
But Wren isn’t the only one with a great journey. Hal is her enemy, a ruthless killer, or so Wren thinks. I absolutely adored him. I don’t want to say too much, because it’s best if you read it and find out for yourself, but I really enjoyed his character.
We also have some great side characters, all of them complex and with their own development.
Also, our main character is bi!! And the main romance in this book? Absolutely amazing. I loved their dynamic, and how they grew together. The angst, the fluff, the banter? Iconic.
Pros- great themes, amazing world, fantastic characters
Cons- can we please just get like, one more chapter? Please? I just love these characters
Overall- 5/5 stars.
Down Comes the Night is an unforgettable debut that I know I will be going back to reread again and again.
If You Liked Down Comes the Night, I’d Recommend:
- Wicked Saints (Something Dark and Holy #1) by Emily A. Duncan [Review]
- Echo North by Joanna Ruth Meyer [Review]
What is a book you read that felt like it was made for you?