Sky in the Deep by Adrienne Young

January 08, 2018

It has been several days since I read Sky in the Deep and I'm still wandering around in a smoky fog trying to gather my thoughts. This novel is the first ARC I have ever requested from a publisher and I was blessed/lucky enough to receive an e-ARC from Brittani at St. Martin's Press. Thank you SO much for trusting me!

Seventeen-year-old Eelyn’s world is war. Raised to fight alongside her Aska clansmen in a generations-old blood feud against the Riki, her life is brutal but simple: fight and survive. Until the day she sees the impossible on the battlefield—her brother, fighting with the enemy—the brother she watched die five years ago.Faced with her brother’s betrayal, she must survive the winter in the mountains with the Riki if she wants to make it back to the fjord after the thaw. But when she begins to see herself in the people she’s been taught to hate, the world Eelyn once knew begins to crumble. And after the village is raided by a ruthless clan many believe to be a myth, Eelyn is given no choice but to trust Fiske, her brother’s friend who has tried more than once to kill her. Together, they must end the blood feud between their clans or watch their people be slaughtered. A lush, Viking-age inspired fantasy about loyalty, forgiveness, and the definition of family.

This was my first read for 2018 and let me be completely honest when I say, Sky in the Deep is an amazing/brilliant/gorgeous debut novel from Adrienne Young. (Hey! We share a first name! This may have been partly what drew me to request this book, but there's no telling.) Young is a talented writer and this is not said lightly. I am incredibly picky when it comes to the books I read and own, but I could not put this down. Her writing slides oh so comfortably into the lyrical, despite the gruesome topics of war and bloodshed rife in her novel. I hungrily devoured it in a few hours after receiving it, determined to know Eelyn's fate despite my early morning alarm.  I found myself rereading passages wanting to relish the beautiful and brutal prose of this Viking world Young has created. I never do this. (As in never ever.)

Sky in the Deep is not your typical YA fantasy read and honestly, I probably wouldn't read it if it was. Our main character is fierce, loyal, calculating, and smart! (Oh gosh, I love her so much.) She is broken, but inherently strong, always evolving with her circumstances. There isn't the tried and tired love triangle trope, no excessive vulgar scenes,  and it's worth noting, no cursing. (This is a rant for another day, but just know, I am SO excited there's not random curse words ruining this novel.) This is not a pretty princess story, instead it's violent, heart-rending, and full of sorrow.

Sky in the Deep is not just a novel about Vikings, but rather, a poignant and prolific narrative on how we are connected.

Friendship. Sibling. Mother. Enemy. Brother. Father. Child. Sister.

I honestly don't know if I can put down in words how I feel about this novel with its rich descriptive war scenes that give way to tender heart break, tempting me to shave the side of my head and learn to throw an ax, while also reminding me of the time when my hatred turned to love. I do however, know this is one of my favourite novels I've ever read and I plan to reread it time and time again. (Fun fact, I almost started it over again right after I finished it.) I implore everyone to read this come April 2018 because I honestly need someone to obsess with. PLEASE.

My rating 5/5

(This is not given haphazardly. I have rated literally only three other books 5/5 on Goodreads. I am in LOVE.)

Adrienne Young is brilliant and I cannot wait to have the physical book IN my hands and I look forward to reading so much more from her!

Sky in the Deep will be out on April 24th 2018. 

Synopsis is from Goodreads respectively.

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