A Shadow Bright and Burning by Jessica Cluess


A Shadow Bright and Burning by Jessica Cluess

Published: September 20th 2016 by Random House Publishing BFYR

I am Henrietta Howel. The first female sorcerer. The prophesied one. Or am I?

Henrietta Howel can burst into flames. When she is brought to London to train with Her Majesty’s sorcerers, she meets her fellow sorcerer trainees, young men eager to test her powers and her heart. One will challenge her. One will fight for her. One will betray her. As Henrietta discovers the secrets hiding behind the glamour of sorcerer life, she begins to doubt that she’s the true prophesied one. With battle looming, how much will she risk to save the city–and the one she loves?

I have had this book on my TBR since this fist time that I laid eyes on it on another blog somewhere. I absolutely loved the cover and the story sounded really amazing! Whilst I did enjoy myself reading this book, I definitely felt like the book lacked that extra something something that would have set it apart from everything else and would have really made the book great.

I like Henrietta. She was definitely a fire cracker, despite the kind of society that she lived in. I loved the fact that she always stood up for what she believed in, even if it went against the norms of society. She was fiercely loyal and protected those who needed it most – and didn’t differentiate between blood. I did feel sorry for her in the sense that everyone wanted something from her and she was constantly being forced to give give give – it was understandable that she snapped the way that she did!

I really did like all of the boys… until true colours started appearing. I think despite Blackwood’s standoffishness, I think he was my favourite one out of all of them and he was definitely the truest one out of all of them! I was not expecting what happened (I don’t want to say too much) and I hated the fact that one of them did what they did! I’m also just going to say Agrippa… I feel like anyone who has read the book will know what i am talking about! For those of you who haven’t – tough cookies!

Sooooo…. The romance bit of this book (which, admittedly, wasn’t a very big part of the plot) was a bit hmmmm. There is Rook (who, by the way, I not too sure of because of his… condition) who I definitely do not ship. For me, because I know that Henrietta and Rook grew up together, I don’t feel that romantic spark between them? For me, he was more like the brother – one that you would always protect and he you, without things ever getting romantic or awkward! Magnus, again, best friend material – sorry, but you have been officially #friendzoned! Especially after what happened after they all went to the theatre! For me, my ultimate ship in this series has to be Blackwood and Henrietta! I am hoping that this is what happens in the series and I will be seriously miffed if it doesn’t!

Also, can we just mention the plot twist galore and the ending? This, for me, was where the book got really exciting! The book was fun, but it was really missing something most of the way through… until we got the the plot twist! I am sure you who have read already know what I am talking about! I absolutely loved it and from there on in, it got heated and battle like and I swallowed it all up whole! I absolutely loved the ending, and it has definitely pushed me into wanting the second book that tick quicker!

All in all, I enjoyed myself reading this book, but I definitely feel like it needed something more throughout the book for it to be set apart from its counterparts in the fantasy genre. I am still looking forward to book two, though (which, by the way, has the MOST AMAZING COVER!!!!!). I gave this book 3.5/5 stars.

7 thoughts on “A Shadow Bright and Burning by Jessica Cluess

  1. Kat Impossible says:

    It’s interesting that you so decidedly ship her with Blackwood, because I actually think they might be related in some way, but who knows? I also thought that the series was missing that special umpf, but I will continue it. I like the villains, they are kind of fascinating.

    • lry93 says:

      When I read the thing about the ivy, that was my first thought as well, but I’m sticking to my ship… unless they do turn out to be related in some way! 😂😂 but I reckon there might be another reason as to why she has the ivy as well

  2. Beth (Reading Every Night) says:

    Great review for this book Lauren. 🙂 I have A Shadow Bright and Burning on my to-read list and have had since just before it was released. I can’t believe I still haven’t gotten around to it yet but I’ll definitely be moving it up my to-read list thanks to your review. It sounds like an amazing book and I’m already intrigued by the plot twist you mentioned! 😀

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