Genre: Urban Fantasy
Recommend it? Sunshine Star
Synopsis: When fifteen year old Mio Yamato furtively sneaks the katana – an ancestral Japanese sword – out of its hiding place in her parent’s attic to help liven up her Christmas party costume, she has no idea of the darkness she is about to unleash on modern day London, or the family secrets that she is going to uncover.
The paralysing paranoia that descends on her before she gets to her friend’s party is her first clue. The vivid and terrifying visions that nearly get her killed are a pretty good warning too.
The giant nine-tailed cat demon that comes after the sword and tries to rip her throat out? Overkill.
Seconds away from becoming kitty-food, Mio is saved by Shinobu, a mysterious warrior boy. But it’s already too late. Mio has ruptured the veil between the mortal realm and the Underworld, and now the gods and monsters of ancient Japan stalk the streets of London, searching for her and the sword.
With the help of her best friend Jack, a fox spirit named Hikaru – and the devoted protection of the betwitchingly familiar Shinobu – Mio attempts to discover the true nature of the sword and its connection to the Yamato family. Because if she doesn’t learn how to control the katana’s incredible powers, she’s in danger of being overwhelmed by them. And if she can’t keep the sword safe from the terrible creatures who want it for their own, she’ll lose not only her own life… but the love of a lifetime.
A slightly different review: I could try and write a coherent review explaining how amazing this book is but let’s be honest – when it comes to me and Zöe Marriott books all I really do is gush for ages and try to find as many words meaning ‘wonderful’ as possible.
Here are some examples: amazing, awe-inspiring, awesome, brilliant, cool, excellent, fabulous, fantastic, incredible, magnificent, marvellous, outstanding, beautiful and so on…
In the spirit of total honesty I will say that I was worried about reading The Night Itself. It’s the first book in a trilogy (I avoid these), there were whispers of ‘insta-love’ (gah!) so I had the book a week before I turned to the first page. My theory was to read a little and see if I’d like it. Halfway through chapter 1 I remembered that I didn’t have to stand in the hall and actually sat down to continue. The book was finished the same night.
I loved The Night Itself. There was nothing in it I would change, which is wonderful and scary because how is the next book going to live up to that? I had those thoughts with Frostfire & Shadows on the Moon but that turned out amazing, so maybe I’m over-thinking this.
Trust me when I say The Night Itself is SO worth reading.
And because I loved Jack & Hikaru so much;