Title: Shadowlark (Skylark Trilogy, 2)
Author: Meagan Spooner
Genre: Dystopian, Young Adult
Publisher: Corgi Books (3rd October 2013)
“They only come at night, when the Star fades”
Lark Ainsley escapes the Iron Wood to search for her brother, only to find herself captured and imprisoned in an underground metropolis.
Powerful magic protects the city of Lethe, providing sanctuary from the Empty Ones, monsters who hunger for human flesh.
But this magic comes at a terrible price, and the city lives in fear of their leader Prometheus and this gang of Eagles.
Danger lies in the shadows, and Lark must find the light . . .
Rating: **** (4 stars)
SHADOWLARK is the second book in Meagan Spooner’s SKYLARK TRILOGY. The book continues the story of Lark Ainsley as she continues her journey to locate her brother Basil. Having left the Iron Wood behind she travels with Nix and Tansy to the next place her brother is rumoured to have travelled to upon his escape.
As SHADOWLARK is the second book in the trilogy I approached it with caution, as I have noticed a trend in trilogies – the second book either makes or breaks the trilogy, and I was really hoping that SKYLARK (review) would fall into the former category rather than the latter. Thankfully I was right, SHADOWLARK continues the momentum of SKYLARK and builds on it answering some questions, whilst at the same time leaving enough plot threads to make me want to read the trilogy’s conclusion in LARK ASCENDING which is out later this year (2014).
Going into SHADOWLARK the name of the city – Lethe – and the name of its leader – Prometheus – really intrigued me. As long-time followers of this blog know, Greek mythology is something I occasionally dabble in – I enjoy reading the modern re-tellings – so both the names rang a bell to me. I was curious to see how Spooner would tie these two ideas and their connotations – Lethe is one of the five rivers of Hades, and Prometheus is said to have given fire to humanity and been punished by the gods for it – with the dystopian narrative in her story. I have to say that I think she used it very appropriately, and explained it well within the narrative.
SHADOWLARK continues the plot of SKYLARK, with Lark trying to locate her brother against the odds. Spooner did a really good job continuing this plot arc, and making Lark’s journey seem believable – her brother is several years ahead of her, but Spooner makes the possibility of Lark finding him believable. One of the things I liked most about this book was Lark’s journey through the book to dealing with the revelations in SKYLARK and accepting herself. Spooner also did a brilliant job with the secondary characters.
If you are a fan of dystopian novels and you haven’t tried this trilogy yet, then you should give it a go. Meagan Spooner creates an interesting world – a mixture of dystopian and horror – populated with believable characters. SHADOWLARK is a great addition to the trilogy, and I look forward to seeing how Spooner concludes Lark’s story.