Book Of Night

Holly Black

Adult Dark Fantasy

In Charlie Hall’s world, shadows can be altered, for entertainment and cosmetic preferences—but also to increase power and influence. You can alter someone’s feelings—and memories—but manipulating shadows has a cost, with the potential to take hours or days from your life. Your shadow holds all the parts of you that you want to keep hidden—a second self, standing just to your left, walking behind you into lit rooms. And sometimes, it has a life of its own.

Charlie is a low-level con artist, working as a bartender while trying to distance herself from the powerful and dangerous underground world of shadow trading. She gets by doing odd jobs for her patrons and the naive new money in her town at the edge of the Berkshires. But when a terrible figure from her past returns, Charlie’s present life is thrown into chaos, and her future seems at best, unclear—and at worst, non-existent. Determined to survive, Charlie throws herself into a maelstrom of secrets and murder, setting her against a cast of doppelgängers, mercurial billionaires, shadow thieves, and her own sister—all desperate to control the magic of the shadows.

Holly Black makes her adult debut with Book of Night, a modern dark fantasy of shadowy thieves and secret societies.

-Excerpt taken from Goodreads.

Check Goodreads to see the book’s ratings.

My Opinion

4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5) Charlie lives in a world where shadow magic is very real. She’s a small con-artist that earns just enough money to get by. When a darkness shows up from her past, her future is in jeopardy.

This book is getting very mixed ratings. People are either loving it or hating it. I actually think Black did a great job venturing into adult fantasy and keeping a great pace within the story while creating a unique world. Charlie is a very flawed character who you couldn’t help but root for. The world of shadows could be dangerous and violent and she skimmed the surface just trying to keep Posey, her sister, safe.

Initially, it was hard for me to view this world. There were referrals to Tik Tok, Ramen noodles, cell phones and more. So the modern world is inundated with these shadows. If I remember correctly, the shadows were introduced first which made my mind immediately go to a fantasy world. Then, when I realized it was a modern world with shadow magic thrown in, my brain had a hard time adjusting. Minus this, I felt like the world was well done. It was dark and mysterious with just a hint of creepy. A lot about the shadows were unknown so that added an extra element of excitement.

I thought it was a fun and unique read, I’ll definitely read book 2 if there is one!

General content summary: F words: 19, language, body of a man killed gruesomely (details of wounds), alcohol, child physical abuse, previous shooting, f/f relationship, vape, intimacy (few details), physical violence, burglary, murders (some details), absent mother, drugs and rehab, child endangerment. 

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