The Shadow of What Was Lost by James Islington
(The Licanius Trilogy #1)
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It has been twenty years since the end of the war. The dictatorial Augurs – once thought of almost as gods – were overthrown and wiped out during the conflict, their much-feared powers mysteriously failing them. Those who had ruled under them, men and women with a lesser ability known as the Gift, avoided the Augurs’ fate only by submitting themselves to the rebellion’s Four Tenets. A representation of these laws is now written into the flesh of any who use the Gift, forcing those so marked into absolute obedience.
As a student of the Gifted, Davian suffers the consequences of a war fought – and lost – before he was born. Despised by most beyond the school walls, he and those around him are all but prisoners as they attempt to learn control of the Gift. Worse, as Davian struggles with his lessons, he knows that there is further to fall if he cannot pass his final tests.
But when Davian discovers he has the ability to wield the forbidden power of the Augurs, he sets into motion a chain of events that will change everything. To the north, an ancient enemy long thought defeated begins to stir. And to the west, a young man whose fate is intertwined with Davian’s wakes up in the forest, covered in blood and with no memory of who he is…
What I thought
This is one of my favorite books that I have read this year. This book was so good I did not believe that it was a debut novel at first.
I had not heard of this book until Audible sent me an email because the audiobook was for sale. I did not purchase the audiobook, but something about the synopsis got me and I just had to pick it up a few days later. Funny enough I picked it up on a weekend and the next week I was asked if I wanted to join the July buddy read for it. It’s like I was meant to pick up this book now. Once I started reading it I could not put it down. Really I had to leave the book at home so I wouldn’t be tempted to read it at work.
This book has multiple POVs and I want to say as of now that our main cast is: Davian, Caeden, Wirr, and Ash. Each of the characters has major roles that are playing out in this story. I am not sure how popular/unpopular this opinion might be but my favorite right now is Ash. There have been hints dropped that make me feel like she is going to have a much larger role in future books.
This story has a rich history and a magic system that is fairly easy to understand. This does have the “chosen one” trope but is the chosen one who we are led to think it is? I have my own opinion on how this may play out but we will see.
Has anyone else read this book? Let’s talk about it in the comments below!
My Rating: /5