Shadow Frost by Coco Ma — ARC Review

shadow frost by coco ma.jpg
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Summary:

IN THE KINGDOM OF AXARIA, a darkness rises.

Some call it a monster, laying waste to the villagers and their homes.
Some say it is an invulnerable demon summoned from the deepest abysses of the Immortal Realm.
Many soldiers from the royal guard are sent out to hunt it down.

Not one has ever returned.

When Asterin Faelenhart, Princess of Axaria and heir to the throne, discovers that she may hold the key to defeating the mysterious demon terrorizing her kingdom, she vows not to rest until the beast is slain. With the help of her friends and the powers she wields — though has yet to fully understand — Asterin sets out to complete a single task. The task that countless, trained soldiers have failed.

To kill it.

But as they hunt for the demon, they unearth a plot to assassinate the Princess herself instead. Asterin and her companions begin to wonder how much of their lives have been lies, especially when they realize that the center of the web of deceit might very well be themselves. With no one else to turn to, they are forced to decide just how much they are willing to sacrifice to protect the only world they have ever known.

That is, of course… if the demon doesn’t get to them first.

From young author Coco Ma comes a dazzling new tale of adventure, power, and betrayal, weaving together a stunning world of magic with a killer cast in an explosive, unforgettable debut.

Review: 4 Stars

Shadow Frost was an amazing YA fantasy. I had really underestimated this book, and I was shocked to find out that Coco Ma was only 15 when she had written it, but I found myself absolutely loving this book from the very beginning. Shadow Frost had an interesting magic system, characters that grabbed a hold of my heard and a plot that shocked me with its many twists, I am left absolutely inspired by Coco Ma and also so grateful that she pursued publishing so I could read this book.

Asterin is what I would refer to as a warrior princess. She had a bit of a hero complex and she was a really fun character to have at the center of this story. I loved her fierce bravery and how she fought for her friends and her country. There are five other side characters that were focused on, and the third person point of view switched between them. I did get two of them confused in the very beginning, but once I got deeper into the story it became easy to keep them straight in my mind.

I really loved that each character had flashbacks of their life included in the story because it really helped flesh out each of the characters. I felt like I knew each of them by the end of the story. Luna was probably my favorite character besides Asterin, just because she was so loyal, but also because she was so sweet. Quinlan was also one of my favorites because he was so much  fun to read about. On several occasions the banter between him and Asterin made me laugh out loud. I just loved the whole crew of characters in this story. I’m so thrilled to hear that there will be a sequel because I want to read more about these characters.

The plot really amazed me. There was one point in the novel where I hit plot twist after plot twist and I had to keep reading just to find out the truth. I didn’t expect this novel to be so well done, but it was so well rounded. There was the main conflict between good and evil, but the conflicts between the characters really added to the story and were the parts that really got to my heart. The magic system was pretty intricate, but I wish that there was a little more world building because the world had so much potential.

Shame on me for underestimating this book and Coco Ma just because she wrote this when she was really young. I really loved this book and I am so sad that it’s over. I hope that Coco Ma keeps writing because she is a natural story teller. I am thrilled to hear that the sequel has been announced and if Coco Ma writes another series it’s definitely going to be on my wish list as well. I can not wait to return to this world and these characters and I am already counting down until the next book.

Coco Ma Author Photo.jpgAbout the Author:

Coco Ma is a Canadian author and pianist. She wrote her first novel, Shadow Frost, at the age of 15, and since she began playing the piano at the age of five and a half, she has also performed on some of the world’s greatest concert stages and graduated with a pre-college diploma in piano performance from The Juilliard School in New York City. Currently, she studies at Yale University. When she isn’t practicing piano, writing, or studying, you might find her bingeing Netflix or eating cake. Lots of cake.
Follow Coco on Twitter @shadowfrost2019 and Instagram @CakeForCoco or visit her website at Coco-Ma.com!

 

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