There Will Come a Darkness

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 02 Sep 2019

Member Reviews

With five different points of view, a plot that brings them all together, and nearly five hundred pages, There Will Come a Darkness is certainly ambitious and it’s enough to throw my mind and heart all over the place before the end. I’m going to attempt to be as concise as possible because I’m not trying to write an essay, but there are a few things that I wanted to talk about. 

As a reader, I can’t resist a book with multiple POVs, but I feel like the balance only works if I’m equally invested, in one way or another, in each character’s perspective. This book gave us Ephyra, Anton, Jude, Hassan, and Beru. We’ve all got that one character in these kinds of narratives that just doesn’t hold up to the rest, but in my case, I found myself losing interest in two of the five characters and wanting more of the one character that got significantly less page time and it threw my reading of the book off balance. My main concern and interest quickly became the relationships between Ephyra, Beru, and Anton, and I felt like Jude and Hassan’s perspectives started to highlight the two main issues I was having with the novel as a whole: the plot and the villain.

One of the things that raised a red flag for me early on regarding the Hierophant and the Witnesses is how strikingly similar they are to Amon and the Equalists from the first season of The Legend of Korra. It wasn’t something I was ever able to ignore and it was the one spot in this novel that took me out of the narrative. Despite the heinous actions of the Witnesses, we never see the Hierophant until the end of the novel and so I never once felt afraid of him or his influence. In the long stretch of time it takes for him to show up on page, the novel is full of frequent betrayals that absolutely exhausted me as a reader. It felt like there was a betrayal at every single turn and that made me feel like the stakes existed for these characters only at an individual level, because by the time they all came together to face the Hierophant and his threat was directly at their doorstep, I couldn’t help but feel like it was the easiest thing they’d faced yet. 

None of this is to say that There Will Come a Darkness did everything wrong. I loved the way the world-building centered itself so often around food, family, and traditions, which made everything come alive for me in a way that felt refreshing and confident. It’s evident from the first page that Pool knows this world intimately and I trusted her to guide me through it, even if some of her decisions didn’t land the way I’d have liked them to. The characters were all complex and compelling in their own ways—even those that faltered for me—and I think the relationships and their nuances were what really drove this novel to have the promise that it has. Between the Graced and their powers, the mythology, and the character relationships, Pool did a lot right here, despite my problems, and I'm looking forward to seeing what the sequel brings to the table.
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For me, this fantasy felt so generic and typical of a novel that was quickly thrown together. The characters were cookie cutters, with no real characteristics that made them stand out from each other. The worldbuilding could have been so much more, but felt sloppy and no well planned. The dialogue was dry and heavy. I really did not enjoy ll the different points of view, especially since the characters' voices were practically indistinguishable from each other. They all sounded like each other, so I never got to really know anyone. It was a big disappointment.
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Character-driven with an ensemble cast (my favorite), the shocking twists and turns will stay with you long after you’ve finished this fantasy. This debut was included in my list for The Young Folks, "25 Spooky, Witchy and Overall Fantastic Books of Halloween."
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I suppose I am ending 2019 with what feels like a return to my roots – a fantasy young adult book with hints of apocalypse. There Will Come A Darkness is Katy Rose Pool’s debut and boy does it slap. It’s a long book and quite the journey from beginning to end. I am glad I read and will happily be back for book two.

There Will Be A Darkness follows five main characters who each get focused chapters. Hassan is a prince in exile. Ephyra lives with her sister Beru and has a strange and terrible Grace. Beru, FYI, is very sick. Anton is very good at card games and is running from his Grace. Jude is the Keeper Of The Word and in search of the Prophet. He also has to reconcile his heart and his duty. You see, in Pool’s world, some people have extraordinary gifts called Graces – this means some people can create wondrous inventions. Some people have amazing reflexes and strength. Some people can scry. Others have the power to heal. Meanwhile, there’s a cult called the witnesses who are lead by the Hierophant who want to wipe out the Graced. And man, this book gets INTENSE.

At times, yes the book does feel a little over long. It’s worth persevering through. I found that each character’s motivations were complex and interesting. There’s a whole lot of action. Also, we get snippets of romance. But honestly, the best piece of the whole book lies in the world building and the character growth for SOME characters. Not all, but some. So, add this to your list if you’re here for a big meaty book and some solid adventures.
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I feel like most of this book is nothing more than world-building and setting up the rest of the series. There is so much repetitiveness while Pool builds that world, plus there is so much of it. The action does not really kick in until well past the halfway point. It is a creative world though, wherein those with magic or the Graces are not the villains. The whole bad versus good element of the story is spectacularly gray, as is the dynamic between the religious and the nonbelievers. I did like the story once it finally started and am intrigued by how each character’s role will unfold and change along with the prophecy. Still, it could use a little less predictability and a lot less repetition to make it truly great.
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I had heard amazing things about this book,  so I was very excited to read it. Unfortunately, for me, this book did not really grab my attention until about the last 25%. I felt most of the book was too slow and I had difficulty sticking with it. 

I felt there were too many POVs, which made the story seem to drag too much. I did not much care for the character of Hassan, whose POV felt drawn out and boring. Beru didn't seem to actually DO much, but at least her chapters were short. Jude's POV annoyed me because they seemed way too drawn out, and I fail to understand how he could have been named (and accepted) the role he did simply by virtue of his birth. He was clearly not cut out for the role. However, I appreciated a couple snippets of his towards the end. 

I loved reading Anton's chapters and Ephyra's chapters, although I felt we did not get enough of Ephyra. But I guess this tends to happen when there are so many other POVs. Some of the more interesting ones get less page time in order to fit in the backstories of the ones we don't care much about. There were also a couple characters I felt were placeholders and didn't really contribute to the story (i.e., the story could have been told without them entirely... like Hector). 

The last 25% of the book really picked up the pace, though, and had I only been rating based on that, this would easily have been a 4 star read. However, I had to average with the first 75% which I felt was very slow.

I greatly enjoyed the romantic tension between some of the characters. I am mostly interested in the Anton/Jude dynamic and I will be picking up Book 2 mainly just to see what happens with them. I really want to know more about their connection and whether this becomes a romantic relation, something else, or what.

I'm also curious as to the true identity of Mrs. Tappan. I feel like she probably has a bigger role to play, even though we only saw her I think 2 times in the book.
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I really enjoyed a great many things about this book. Characters were fleshed out and the plot was well spaced. Some of the secondary storylines could've used a bit more page space but all in all an enjoyable read!
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If you love darker stories set in a YA Fantasy world, you may want to pick this one up next! 

In this story we follow multiple characters as they venture though a unique, magical world. They are all diverse and eventually come together bringing down the darkness. This is a densely character-driven plot, so if you aren't a fan of these types of stories, you may want to set it aside. 

Like with most multiple-POV stories, there were a few that weren't as exciting to read, so I did find moments were I was mostly skimming through until I can get to the more interesting POVs. 

Overall, I gave this one 4 out of 5 stars. It's definitely a world full of dark corners and dense content, so if you love reading these vibes, pick it up!
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I received a digital copy of this book from Netgalley for an honest review.

This book just wasn't for me.  Even with 5 different characters to read about I was bored with the story lines.  I just didn't find any of the characters that interesting and nothing seemed to happen to advance the plots.  There was too much flirting between characters and not enough of anything else to hold my interest.
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I enjoyed this book and the characters.  There was plenty of action but at points the story felt like it was dragging a bit but that might be because of the number of character points of view.  Overall a solid book one of the series and I will be looking forward to picking up book two when I can.
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The book automatically made me think about Zelda just a little bit with the prophets and the characters. The character design in this book is and was exquisite. I enjoyed reading all the descriptions, development, and love put into the characters from the very beginning. Many of the characters have found their way in the world that is so important to that character that I can’t help but love them. The way the POVs are written in this book is great and easier to follow then many POV books—I get very confused with those quite often. Here, I really enjoyed reading it that way and felt that it was done in a simple but complex way.

There are many themes and ideas that come into this novel such as love, heartache, self-respect, loss, and more. I really loved delving into the lives of the different characters as I am a character writer myself and truly enjoy developing all sorts of different characters. The characters in this book caught my attention so much and I believe that students would be able to connect to the different characters as well (there is someone for everyone). This can be utilized for many grades and many different groups of people—it would be a great book club book.

I enjoyed the magical aspects that this book had in it as it created a very unique way of magic that I enjoyed immensely. There is a lot of backstory that can help you understand what is happening cover to cover. I would suggest this book for a book club or even independent reading as it is not a difficult read and definitely has the high interest aspect to it that all students can get with.
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Seriously wow this was fantastic. The alternating POV, the worldbuilding, everything just worked! And somehow managed to play with cliches and tropes without being predictable and boring, instead this was a completely fresh story that I can't wait to get more out of. I especially loved how we were able to really follow the story of these characters and develop such unique attachments to them, especially as some we found out later will probably be breaking our hearts!

Great first entry into what is sure to be an outstanding series.
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This book was the beautiful epic fantasy that I need. There is a complicated magic system, five main characters with intertwining stories, and a looming darkness throughout the story. The story is told from the point of view of each of the five main characters, so it jumps in and out of each of their lives as they all become intertwined. There is Ephyra, the assassin (that I mentioned above is my favorite). She has the power to heal or kill with her touch and she has been taking the lives of others in order to keep her sister, Beru, alive. Beru is Ephyra's moral compass, keeping her from killing innocent people while also taking care of the two of them in their travels. Anton is the gambler. A boy with a dark past that he continues to run from and a magic ability that he tries hard to forget. Hassan is the prince in hiding. His home has been overrun by religious zealots, determined to eradicate magic and all those who possess magical abilities, so he has escaped to live with his aunt. Finally Jude is the protector, the Keeper of the Word, sworn to protect the Prophet. He has lived his whole life preparing for this role.

All of these characters are beautiful and flawed and I love them all so much. Though the actual book is pretty hefty, weighing in at almost 500 pages, I still flew through it because I just had to see what happens as the darkness creeps in. If you're looking for a fantasy read that keeps you engaged with a wide cast of characters, definitely pick this one up!
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I DNF'd this book because I found it difficult to keep up with all of the characters. Each chapter seemed to be a new character. It was just too much. Three POV's seems to be my limit.

I will not be posting a review on Goodreads or Amazon. I only post reviews of books I recommend.
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There Will Come a Darkness by Katy Rose Pool is so well written. The magic system is unique. I really enjoyed how Pool put everything together. I would like to start with the magic because I think it helps put everything together. First off there are people in this world that have special abilities. People that have these abilities are considered to be graced.

The Four Bodily Graces:

- The Grace of Heart - Enhances strength, agility, speed, and senses (Elite Fighters)
- The Grace of Blood - Gives and takes energy to heal or harm (Healers)
- The Grace of Mind - Creates objects imbued with unique properties (Alchemists and Artificers)
- The Grace of Sight - Senses and located living beings (Scryers)

This world that we dive into seems to be a very religious one. The world believes in prophets that guide people. There is a Hierophant that is convinced that Graces are unnatural and that anyone that has a grace should be removed from positions of power. The problem with this is most of the world’s rulers are people that come from families who have been graced. The people that follow the Hierophant that are trying to remove the graces from power are called the Witnesses. These Witness groups attack kingdoms to overthrow the rulers. The goal is to kill the graced. Basically the Witnesses are groups of zeolites. This is the background of what is going on in this world.

The Characters with a point of view:

- Ephyra (The Pale Hand): The Grace of Blood

Ephyra is devoted to her younger sister Beru. All Ephyra is trying to accomplish is to heal her sister. Even if that means causing harm to others. Ephyra is able to steal a person’s Esha (spirit) and put it into her sister to make her live longer. When she does this, it leaves a pale hand on their skin, which is how Ephyra got the nickname The Pale Hand.

- Jude (Captain of The Order of the Last Light)

Jude is definitely an interesting characters to me. He struggles between his duty as captain and trying to be a good friend to his childhood best friend. Once of the biggest things I see in Jude’s character is he doesn’t think he is enough. His first priority is to protect the last prophet.

- Hassan (The Prince)

Hassan is the Prince of Herat. When there was an attack on his kingdom he escaped to go live with his aunt. All he really wants is to return home and save his kingdom from the Witnesses.

- Anton: The Grace of Sight

Anton was bullied by his older brother who was born without grace. Anton believes that is his brother is chasing him down to kill him so Anton stays on the move. He is constantly moving cities and not staying anywhere for long. Since Anton was bullied so bad by his brother, that he refuses to use his grace even if it allows him to sense the esha’s around him.

- Beru

Beru is Ephyra’s little sister. She was brought back to life after falling extremely ill by Ephyra’s grace. In order for Beru to stay alive, Ephyra has to continue to give Beru other people’s Esha. Basically this resurrects Beru every time. Beru’s only concern is her sister. She is afraid that Ephyra is going to lose herself to the darkness.

The Story:

Having five different characters tell this story was a lot. There were a few times that I felt completely lost. We get to know each of the major five characters quite well. We learn that there is a last prophet and a prophecy. This prophecy states there will come a darkness and the last prophet will lead the people to peace. There are five key players (our characters anyone?) that will bring about this darkness.

I really felt that book one was like the prologue for this whole series. Not a whole lot happened in the book but we were given so much information. I am actually slightly hoping that this will be more than a three book series because I feel like there is too many things that need to happen for there to only be two more books. Now don’t get me wrong, I thought this book was great. I just think that it set us up for the series vs actually being the first book in the series.

This cast of characters is great. I am looking forward to getting to know them better with the next book. I would really like to see a plot driven by action and not just telling us who the key players are. I definitely think this will be a series to watch.
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Lets just say that after reading an advance copy of this book, I STILL preordered it. It's THAT good. The world building and the magic system were TOP NOTCH and so unique. I loved it so much. I'm also a huge fan of multiple points of view and this author blew that out of the park. I can't wait for the next book in the series!!
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If you’re looking for an alluring, eye-catching, jaw-dropping, and absolutely stunning piece of YA Fantasy, you’ve found the right book to buy.

There Will Come a Darkness began and ended with two large ‘BANG’s. It started out agonizingly addictive, and it ended clenching our emotions.

Having over two POVs can be a bit scary for some people, and if not dealt with properly, can quickly become the ruination of a book. However, Pool did not disappoint, and she made sure that we, her readers, would fall in love with her novel. The point of having that many POVs was for deeper grasps of and better understanding for these specific characters, as well as glamorizing the plot.

The character development in this book was absolutely phenomenal. We were given characters who were both strong and sensitive, both unfaltering and fragile. It’s always important that, when having more than two MCs, you are strengthening the need for those characters throughout the book. And I can definitely assure you that that was well done.

If I could give a hug to Pool, I would. Her writing style is addictive and alluring, and this novel decimated what it means to be YA Fantasy. For that, I rate it 5 stars.
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So I am actually surprised by how easy this one was to read and how much I enjoyed it! For whatever reason, I had the impression this was going to be a very involved and in depth high fantasy that would be kind of slow and hard to get through. Those books are often works of art, but don't tend to be something I reach for when I'm on the edge of a slump like I was when I read this. Luckily, I was totally wrong! This is such a great and vibrant fantasy world and I loved it, but something about the writing style made it so engaging and easy to read that I flew through it! There were a few things that I could have predicted but there were times my mouth literally dropped open because the twist was something I hadn't been expecting. I'm definitely looking forward to the next one.⁠⠀
Plus, this cover is just GORGEOUS!!
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I was looking forward to reading this story based on the high praise from other authors I follow on social media - and their recommendation was right on the mark! I truly loved this book, from its pacing, characters, world-building, and riveting plot. In fact, this story was featured in our school’s book club this month and was greatly appreciated by students AND staff alike.
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This one took me a while because I was mostly reading on lunch breaks, but I'm so intrigued by the concept! Ephyra and Anton in particular stand out as favorite characters, but all of them are so fascinating and complex, and I loved seeing how their stories came together. I think this one is going to be a hit with fantasy fans, and I'll definitely be picking up the sequel when it comes out (in FOREVER because this was an ARC - thank you NetGalley! - sobs that I have to wait)!
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