Author: Melinda Salisbury
Age/genre: Young Adult fantasy
Published by: Scholastic
Publication date: 01/03/18
My rating: ★★★★★
A people cowed by grief and darkness.
A cut-throat race for power and victory.
A girl with everything and nothing to lose…
Sorrow all but rules the Court of Tears, in a land gripped by perpetual grief, forever mourning her brother who died just days before Sorrow was born. By day she governs in place of her father, by night she seeks secret solace in the arms of the boy she’s loved since childhood. But when her brother is seemingly found alive, and intent on taking control, Sorrow has to choose whether to step aside for a stranger who might not be who he claims to be, or embark on a power struggle for a position she never really wanted.
I received a copy from Scholastic in exchange for an honest review.
You’re always in for a great when a new Mel Salisbury book drops and State of Sorrow is no exception, you can feel the magic seeping from the pages. Its the first in what promises to be an exceptional duology. We meet Sorrow Ventaxis. Daughter of the Rhannish chancellor, who reduced his country to a place of misery after the death of his son Mael. Rhannon is now at a standstill, in a never-ending state of mourning. Beauty, art and anything remotely happy had been stripped away from everyone, regardless of status. Since the death of her grandmother Rhannon is mostly ruled by Sorrow, while her father is lost in his grief. On the eighteenth anniversary of Mael’s death and the day the Jedenvadt plan to depose Sorrow’s father, a boy Vespus Corrigon claims is the Rhannish lost heir returns. His return sets in motion a messy, cut-throat election where for the first time in the history of Rhannon two names preside on the ballot papers. I don’t want to say more here because of spoilers.
Sorrow, for that is all she brings us.
I was hooked from the start, instantly lost in the beautiful world of Laethea. I’ve always said no one does worldbuilding like Mel and I stand by it, this time she has truly outdone herself. The kingdoms of Laethea and their cultures are beautifully vivid and well written, with inspiration from legend folklore woven into the story. I love the characters, don’t even get me started on how badass Sorrow is. She’s my absolute favourite and it’s State for the protagonist to be my favourite. Sorrow refuses to sit down and be told what to spend used as a puppet, which I love. Always thinks of her people and what is right for them, striving to be a better chancellor than her father. I’m also a little bit in love with Rasmus Corrigon, you’ll see why when you read it. State of Sorrow is beautifully dark, full of magic, twists, politics and ulterior motives that will leave you reeling.
I don’t think there’s anything I can say that will do this book the justice it deserves, all I can say is State of Sorrow is quite simply, stunning. I can’t recommend it enough. I’m impatiently waiting for the the second book, next year is so far away!