The Shadow and Bone series is an adaptation of the Grishaverse, a bestselling young adult fantasy series of novels by Leigh Bardugo based loosely on Tsarist Russia.
The stories centres on a teenage orphan named Alina, who works as a mapmaker on the front lines for a perpetually war-torn country called Ravka. In the heat of battle, she discovers unexpectedly that she belongs to the Grisha. On the other side is the crows down from the dregs. Thugs, thieves, assassins and saints. They are at war now, and it will take more than magic to survive.
I settled to watch this on Friday after work with my siblings. My sister knowing the full story having heard me tell it a couple of times and my brother indulging me to see why my head has been buried in the Grisha books all year. Yes, really it’s like I’ve lived in the Grishaverse all year going from one book to the other.
The first episode was a bit of a drag and I looked anxiously to my siblings hoping I hadn’t disappointed them and reduced their expectations of my reviews when next I suggest something.
But it picked up as the series progressed. And let me say I didn’t hold back on the spoilers. I just couldn’t help it. So here I was explaining who is who, where is where and wondering how the whole series would turn out. I did enjoy it eventually and I am definitely looking forward to the next seasons.
I did enjoy the inclusion of Milo the goat. I love animals.
My favourite characters were Jesper and Nina. Jesper has always been a favourite from the books and I enjoyed Nina’s character in the show compared to the books she was really an enjoyable watch.
Ben Barnes as the darkling was so satisfying I’m this close to joining team Darklina after watching the show. Interesting. I am still rooting for Malina because I love a best friend to lovers trope more than anyone else, even though I doubt I am becoming lovers with my best friend anytime soon. It is best to just leave that in the books.
I loved the crows in the books and I guess this is Alina’s story but I wished some of their book qualities were brought to life, first of all, they felt incomplete, and their planning wasn’t as exciting as I had read in the books. Kaz I guess is a tough actor to act and understand without knowing the inner workings of his head, I wish their stories had been fleshed out more and we got to see the crows as major characters in the story. I know their story had to be made up a bit because the books were written after the activities of Shadow and Bone so I am looking forward to how their story would be fleshed out, I want to see Kaz Brekker as the big bad guy more of that please, and less of him getting beat up.
Also, the darkling I hope is more villainous in the coming stories. He was feared in the books and in the series what was happening mal facing him and people not shuddering at the mention of his name. I need a big bad villain, please. More power, more scheming, more shadows.
As for Alina, everything was perfect. Her acting, growth story, it was perfect. Mal in the show is definitely a new character haha not entirely but yeah different. They bought him a new personality but it’s alright I like it.
Overall this was a great series, I am usually sceptical with book to movie or series adaptation but this was a very good one I liked how the crows were combined with their story and I am looking forward to the rest of the crows coming together. Also, remember that this is YA adaptation so I think the execution was well played out.
The setting, plot, outfits, acting, script, story and everything was well done maybe with the exception of the sun power I wished it looked better but I guess imagination will always be better than real life.