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Review: The Song Rising by Samantha Shannon

**If you haven’t read The Bone Season or The Mime Order, beware of spoilers!**

The Song Rising, I am very sad to say, has given me serious doubts about how much I’m going to enjoy the rest of this seven book series. The first book had me proclaiming it was my favourite series since Harry Potter, the second disappointed but left me optimistic for the third, and…now…honestly, I’m worried.

The Bone Season gave us original, fantasy/dystopian magic. It was wonderful and everything I never knew I wanted. The Mime Order was a Victorian murder mystery jaunt around London and, though I could appreciate it, it wasn’t to my taste. And now The Song Rising, which just felt like Mission: Impossible in a slightly more futuristic London and everything fell just a little bit flat.

Book #3 picks up where the second left off, with Paige having won the crown of Underqueen and discovered the terrible truth about Jaxon. And then…we just flounder for a few hundred pages.
Paige becoming Underqueen was not a story choice I agreed with, and the way this book panned out with Paige’s queenliness as a theme just did not work for me. I had the same problem with this as I had with The Mime Order: I do not care so much about the world of Scion – I want to see more of the grit of this world, explore the supernatural, the clairvoyant side of things, the Rephaim! I didn’t mind so much with The Mime Order, I think the series needed a book about the politics of Scion and the gangs of criminals that are oppressed by it. But now I’m just getting a exasperated.
Shannon’s core plot, a group of special people vs a government who wants to end them, is nothing new. In my opinion Shannon’s overall plot so far has been fairly weak and it’s the furthest thing from what makes this series so good. There is so much more of a story outside of the political troubles of Scion and the mime order. There are (hopefully) so many more interesting characters than Paige Mahoney and Warden (who I still do not ship, though hard I have tried). When are we going to properly explore ghosts and clairvoyants, Rephaim and emim? When are we going to get some answers to the myriad of questions posed within these three books?

I won’t divulge the plot of The Song Rising but if I’m being honest, it really felt like filler. And if it had been filler about ghosts and clairvoyants then I would not have minded, but it was all a very similar feel to book #2 and I’m bored of it now. Enough. I need progression, otherwise my ratings are just going to keep getting lower and lower.


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  1. I’m about 2/3 of the way through The Song Rising right now, and I loved TBS and TMO, but so far I would say I’m liking this one least. I’m also a little frustrated by the “breaking up” plot point, because it’s not like they had enough of a relationship prior for that to be upsetting for the reader. I’ll see how it ends, but I hope (for me) it gets better!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I agree with you there, and I think the same applies to the whole Underqueen bit. Would have made more sense later on in the series when been with her a bit more or grown more invested maybe.
      I think the ending’s quite good, but im really hoping the next book is more interesting!


    • Yes – I think that’s true, although since the Underqueen bit happened so early it makes me wonder what sort of stuff Shannon has in store for the next books. I felt like TSR has so much action already. It feels like a later book in the series! We’ll see. I have about 50 pages to go, so I expect to finish it today or tomorrow!

      Liked by 1 person


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