Title: Mask of Shadows
Author: Linsey Miller
Genre: YA Fantasy
Publication Date: August 29, 2017
My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
I Needed to Win.
They Needed to Die.
Sallot Leon is a thief, and a good one at that. But gender fluid Sal wants nothing more than to escape the drudgery of life as a highway robber and get closer to the upper-class—and the nobles who destroyed their home.
When Sal steals a flyer for an audition to become a member of The Left Hand—the Queen’s personal assassins, named after the rings she wears—Sal jumps at the chance to infiltrate the court and get revenge.
But the audition is a fight to the death filled with clever circus acrobats, lethal apothecaries, and vicious ex-soldiers. A childhood as a common criminal hardly prepared Sal for the trials. And as Sal succeeds in the competition, and wins the heart of Elise, an intriguing scribe at court, they start to dream of a new life and a different future, but one that Sal can have only if they survive.
I’m going to start this off by saying that the main criticism for this book is that it’s basically The Hunger Games or Throne of Glass, which honestly scared the crap out of me because I.. *whispers* didn’t like The Hunger Games or Throne of Glass. I’m happy to announce that this book is everything that I wanted both of those books to be, and I loved it. There are 100% elements of both books, but done a bit better in my opinion. Now, before you get the pitchforks and torches out, let me explain myself.
My main issue with the aforementioned books was the writing and the pace. I found the writing to be dull and the pace to be slow. However, in Mask of Shadows, the pace was much quicker and the writing was very easy to read and flowed extremely well. Once I started reading, I couldn’t stop until I was done.
Sal is a great character to read about, and being inside their head was a pleasure. Sal is a lover and a fighter, and it was great to read about a badass character that wasn’t all muscle and hard edges. They knew themselves very well, and knew what they wanted even better. Sal’s determination and inner strength was admirable, and their sense of humor was on point.
I absolutely cannot wait to continue on with this series. I give this book 4 out of 5 stars.