Cover Image: The Bone Shard War

The Bone Shard War

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Member Reviews

Thank you, NetGalley, publishers, and Andrea Stewart for gifting me a copy of The Bone Shard War in return for my honest opinion.

3/5 stars

I will admit, I saw the cover and clicked without reading whether or not this was part of a series. It happens to be the last book in a 3 book series so to say I was confused would be an understatement. I ended up not finishing listening to the book due to my confusion. The characters seemed well thought out, and the writing was great, I also enjoyed the narrator. Which is why I didn't give it my usual 1/1.5 for a DNF, but since it was my fault for the confusion I wasn't going to fault the book for that.

If I didn't have so many books to read I would look into this series but at this point, I don't think that will happen. But if I do I will come back and update my review.
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I realized this was not book 1 but 3 so I'm currently reading book 1 in order to get this one. I'm loving book one so ill definitely love this whole series and I cannot wait to get to this last installment.
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Please note that if you don’t have clear memories of who the characters are (beyond the main, like, six from book one), it will take you quite a while to get your bearings.

This was a fitting end to the series. Our main characters are separated but working towards a common goal (against very different odds), so jumping between them kept the momentum going. Unfortunately, because there’s something like 5 main plots to tie up, the antagonists have to wear many hats, which make them seem kind of flighty and inconsistent. (I also really wish I remembered the backstory of one of them because without it their every action lost any semblance of impact; this is a me problem but also had a big effect on my reading experience).

After his kind of blah role in the second book, Jovis really carried the character development in this book. Lin was rather implacable, but that’s in character for her. And Phalue has much more depth than she had at the start of this journey.
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The third and final installment in the Drowning Empire series does not disappoint. The first story was a book club pick, but I was invested in the stories and continued with the following titles. 

This series is a bit weightier and darker than many of the other fantasy series and are more along the lines of Ursula K LeGuin than some of the other currently popular titles. I like that it wasn't a hoard of teenaged protagonists, but were complex characters with complicated lives. The magic systems and world building was thorough and well planned. 

Natalie Naudus and Emily Woo Zeller are two of my favorite narrators, so to have them both on the same title was a delight!
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An epic and satisfying conclusion to this great fantasy series! Full of magic, adventure, romance and intrigue. I especially loved the narration by one of my favs, Natalie Naudus and can't wait to read what Andrea Stewart comes up with next! Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for an early audio copy in exchange for my honest review!
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This is the third and final book in this series and it was one of the rare series where the books keep getting better. I enjoyed book 1, loved book 2 but I am dying at how good book 3 was. I really want to re read them all because I want to go through the story again with a better understanding of the world. 

I made the mistake of listening at work and honestly it took everything in my power to not fall apart at the end. I think Andrea Stewart just became an auto buy author and I cant wait to see when she does next.
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I really liked this trilogy, however I do feel like book three could’ve been a little shorter. It started sounding redundant. However, over all the series was amazing. This was the first multi-pov series I read and at first I had a hard time focusing but then it all just clicked together. It’s like three different stories that converge into one. 

The animal companions were partly my favorite.  Jo is and his animal companion had the best relationship and you could tell they cared for each other deeply. 

I would recommend this series to anyone looking for a high fantasy, animal companion, without the grim dark aspect!
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Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for giving me access to this Audiobook. This was a mostly satisfying end to a really great series. lt was probably my least favorite of the three because I really liked Jonas from the previous books and was rooting for him in this one and that’s all I’m going to say about that. The non-humans stole the show again, and were by far my favorite characters. I thought the mystery of the islands sinking was really done well and overall she tied this series up well. I look forward to reading anything else Andrea Stewart writes. Also, the narration was really well done, but honestly Emily Woo Zeller could have done the whole series and it would have been perfect too.
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I loved Bone Shard Daughter for it's magic system, cool characters, and magical companions. Unfortunately for me, this last one took a turn away from all that into more politics and romance. I wasn't a huge fan of this focus shift and the romance felt forced to me. i will try more from this author, but not a win for me in the end.
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Thank your for the opportunity of reviewing this book.
I'm so happy for the finale of this series, it's didn't disappoint, we have our slow-flame couples finally get together, and I specially love that this series focuses so much on side characters, that nobody seems lost in an epic fantasy plot.
I needed to re-read the first 2 books to understand better, as we have a lot of conflicts and different information coming but it made up for the finale. amazing series.
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Wow! I will miss these characters so much. This series really grew on me. So much growth from all the characters throughout the series. The world building and writing is amazing. 
I found the beginning of this third book to be frustrating. Towards the middle and the end of the book I really started to enjoy it. I absolutely adore Mephi and Jovis together. I will forever think about them. Jovis and Lin are the slow burn of all slow burn. I fell in love with each character. 
If you love a good fantasy book and want to escape the real world for a little while then I highly recommend this series to you!
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I always dread the final book in a fantasy series because I worry the ending won’t give what I want it to give. The Bone Shard War did not disappoint and ended the series with a bang. I listened to the audiobook and the narrators were fantastic. If you read the the Bone Shard Daughter and the Bone Shard Emperor, you will be delighted with the final installment. And if you haven’t started the trilogy, you should. It has the most unique magic system that lends to such an interesting plot.
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"She was coming to realize that memories were fickle things, shifting with the light and the angle." ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆ When I got the notification that I received an arc for the ending of this beautiful series, I couldn't believe it. The Bone Shard Daughter was one of my favorite unexpected loves from 2021 and I have been following its growth ever since. The Bone Shard Emperor only expanded my love, and I found that The Bone Shard War quickly became a most anticipated read for this year. Being able to read it early feels like a gift. It was all I wanted it to be. Tragic and heart breaking. Full of so many different kinds of grief and loss. A lesson on how to go about life without your partner next to you. I love that this series focuses so much on side characters, that nobody seems lost in an epic fantasy plot. Whether it be our main character Lin, or our favorite creature Mekhi, we know their story inside and out. I continued to be in awe of the bone shard magic, and loved that so many unanswered questions from book one get answers here. What incredible writing to not forgot such small details over such a large expanse of time! I do have to admit that I was a little lost at times simply because with a two year gap in the plot, the first half of this book was a lot of going back in forth in time. It didn't impact my experience as much as I thought, though, because by the end I was flipping pages faster than I could read waiting to find out how it all concludes. I love Lin. I think she is one of the best written female characters I've ever read. From the questioning daughter in the first book, to the powerful ruling emperor she becomes, I have never known someone so genuine. Among the years of her life she needs to figure herself out, she's also taking care of an empire and a people who don't necessarily want her. It's unbelievably endearing and exciting. I already can't wait to read this series through again from start to finish. This has such five star potential, and I can't wait to see if it gets there. If you haven't read The Drowning Empire books yet, now is the perfect time to start!! This beauty comes out on April 18, and I know she can't wait to spill her secrets to you.
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I voluntary read and reviewed an Advanced Copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own. 

Oh did this take me too long and it wasn't just me getting distracted by other things. Usually when I write reviews I start with the positive parts but here i have so little to say and I truly hate saying this, trust me.

Well here we go, the book is too long. I cant be on 96% and still have almost an hour left of the audiobook. The chapters were too big and it was mostly repetitiveness (I hope I spelled that right). Sail to an island, something happens, they barely escape, reach to sore to someting else happening and again barely escape and sail to another island. Very much like the endless sea this whole situation felt endless.

Most of the characters became too nothing for me to even try to write something but two of them stood out for the wrong reasons. Renamis entire personality is that she is an orphan and grew up on the streets. She makes sure to either think about it or mention it in every chapter she has. Even when she becomes relatable I find her annoying. And Ayesh, I could go on without her. She has no meaning besides giving Renami a POV and maybe be something else besides the orphan who grew up on the streets.

Jovis used to be my favourite but meh.

Well for the positive the writing is very consistent and it has a fairly good and fair ending which is the last maybe 20% of the book which isnt much, The best thing are Mephi and Thrana and that is all I choose to remember from this book.

Thank you to NetGalley, Orbit, Hachette Audio  and the author for providing me with the copy.
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Thank you to the publishers, author and NetGalley for the free copy of this audio book.

I enjoyed listening to this series. Good world building and complex characters, I'm glad I took the time to go back and listen to the other 2 in the series. The narrators were good as well!
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The final instalment in the Drowning Empire series was not entirely what I was expecting based on other reviews I’ve seen and I think I find myself amongst the majority in that I enjoyed it more than book 2 (and yet still less than book 1). 

The Bone Shard War picks up 2 years after the conclusion of book 2 and straight off the hat that was A Choice™️. All sense of building urgency felt absent and we almost had to relearn the characters as many had gone through quite drastic changes. Aspects of these changes worked but I think overall this negatively impacted the pacing of this book and the series overall.

The characters themselves annoyed me much more in this book and much less at the same time. I appreciated Stewart’s efforts to add complexity to the motives and emotional responses of characters, especially Jovis, but a lot of it felt forced and inconsistent with OG character narratives. I do think that was the point and was intentionally done to show how trauma/PTSD can impact a person but again, it just felt clunky.

As noted above, the pacing of this book was a mess from the start. The time jump really threw me off initially and then every time it felt like I found a rhythm again there was this 2-steps-forward-3-steps-back situation where a POV change would jump the timeline around. Not only did this make for confusing, halting progress, it also meant that there was so much repetition. We saw the same event from different people who had almost the same through train/response (with a few key characters swapped) and it just kept happening.

Following on from this, I also had some issues with the feeling that this book lacked a final edit. Do not mistake me, Stewart’s writing was again enjoyable to read and this was a cohesive storyline, but I think it could have been 100-150 pages shorter and have lost nothing. Also there was just some awkward phrasing moments - “more extra bread” being the one example I noted.

Finally, the plot of this book got so convoluted but not for any real reason. We had one Big Bad for book 2 who then became 3 in book 3 but then on of those 3 big bads kinda disappeared about 50% through book 3 and another changed sides and it was just confusing. Also there as so much back and forth from the characters regarding which side they were on it gave me whiplash. No conflict was resolved through cleverness or tactics or even magic really, it mostly just came down to “nah I’m with them now”.

I’ve complained about this a lot and I think that’s reflective of my experience with this as a series. I loved the Bone Shard Daughter so freaking much and I had such high hopes for the rest of this series. It was original and had really cool characters and a great setting and insane magic and really cool world building. And whilst all of that didn’t totally disappear in books 2 & 3, it still felt like they took the brightness all the way down. The characters went from being super cool and a bit non-traditional to feeling like Fantasy Character 13-A, ripped straight from some manual. The plot seemed to have been bent to fit a conclusion that became steadily less likely the further in we got. The magic system became so much more stereotypical and somehow less well explained. 

I will say that I did enjoy the end of this book. It wasn’t enough to redeem the series, that ship sailed with book 2. But it was a satisfying enough conclusion that it made up for some of the bad time I had. Do I recommend this series? I don’t know anymore. Book 1 was outstandingly good but it went downhill from there.  I would have to say maybe, with the understanding that the end is a bit weak, simply because everyone should get to enjoy Mephi (who, shockingly, was the single standout in book 3). 

Thank you NetGalley for the audiobook of The Bone Shard War. I was granted a late proof and had already purchased the physical copy but had a good time listening to it via audiobook. My review is obviously quite unbiased.
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Let me start by saying I loved this series. I loved Lin and watching her come into her own and become the ruler she was meant to be. I loved that she made so many allies and friends along the way and learned what it meant to truly put her people first. And possibly fall in love.

Each book kept getting better. This third book was by far my favorite. We learned so much about the characters and creatures and what was really happening with the islands of the empire. And I did not at all expect what we found out! 

My ONLY complaint is that these books are SO SIMILAR to 𝑻𝒉𝒆 𝑩𝒐𝒏𝒆 𝑾𝒊𝒕𝒄𝒉 series by Run Chupeco. 😬 Like, as I read the first two books specifically, it was so hard not to think about The Bone Witch series. I also loved that series, so it was really easy to see the similarities.

There are some differences as well, especially in the last book, but I almost expected them to be written by the same author or as a spinoff.

The magic systems, characters, and some creatures are similar in style. Like TBW creates creatures with a type of necromancy, and this series creates them by carving into bone, and it's a rare thing. Also, both series use weird yet basic names for some of the characters like  Tea, Fox, Leaf, Sand, etc... They both have dark characters  that can use these magics looking for revenge for being cast out by the deceitful royal family.

The biggest difference I saw with the two series was that this series had a "special" creature that played a huge role in what's happening with the islands and bonds with some of the characters giving them certain powers. I loved that part!

This is not a bash on the series, just something I noticed that kida bothered me as I also loved the other series and found them so similar.
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I found this trilogy a series of diminishing returns...started off really good and gradually declined as the series continued.  I was happy to no longer have the love triangle that was being hinted at in the second book, but things seemed to be tied up just a bit too neatly in the end.  I think the book could use another once over on editing as there are some things that seemed be be inconsistent in parts with the sizes of the Ossalen. Also- me being persnickety- HORNS are NOT the same as bone!  Horns are made of keratin like fingernails and hair. ANTLERS are made of bone.
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This is one of my new favourite fantasy series. The characters are so interesting, good representation, the relationships, the politics and a unique magic system that I haven’t seen before. I want more books. The narrators are really good. 

My only critique is that some parts of the books feels slow, the pacing is going back and forth and I wanted to jump and skip pages sometimes, and this goes for all three books. The trilogy would be five stars if this wasn’t the case.

However, want to reread them immediately because I miss the characters already.
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First off, I've enjoyed this trilogy immensely.  I read the first book, did a combination of reading/listening to audiobook for book 2, and listened to the audiobook for book 3.  This book picks up roughly two years past the end of The Bone Shard Emperor, so I was not expecting that time jump. It was a good and bittersweet end to the trilogy.  There were some parts of the characters' stories I felt were just kind of...put there for no real reason.  Just...oh they're doing this now after having shown no aptitude or even hints at wanting to do this. Without giving away spoilers, I felt like it shouldn't have taken Jovis two years to come up with a workaround.  

Overall, I really enjoyed this series as a whole and would definitely recommend.
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