Monday, November 18, 2013

The Night Itself by Zoë Marriott

Release Date: Out now!

Publisher: Walker Books

Pages: 368pgs

The Story

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.

The Review

I believe this is my very first book that I've read of Zoë Marriott's work, but even so, I definitely know now why so many other readers have praised her books up over the past year or so. So with her newest book out this year, THE NIGHT ITSELF, and after reading it pretty quickly too, the book itself has certainly got my interest up in her other works that she has out right now and in saying that I'm looking forward to reading more from her in the future and from this particular new series of hers as well.

THE NIGHT ITSELF - while interesting and fairly unique within its own genre - may not have been the most epic of all books that I have ever read, but in my opinion, I still firmly believe that this book is one of the most well-constructed books I have come across lately and the author has definitely set up this book as a wonderful beginning to a new trilogy, which, of course, I can't wait to read more of, especially with learning more about our main characters.Whether it's to do with the well-balacned pacing or with the characters themselves who are both quirky and strong within their own right, but the author should seriously take on all the credit for her Japanese mythology side of things that are presented in this book and how she cleverly combined them with a UK contemporary setting (which was great!). You know, sometimes what I often find in YA books is that mythology and contemporary settings can clash or rather simply not work at all nor seem believable enough for readers (even for fantasy books), but with this particular title it just worked wonders for the author and her readers.

Overall, while I will admit the book did have a couple of problems here and there (including times where there were slower parts in the book or where I thought some scenes weren't getting straight to the point as I would've liked or something along those lines), but on a whole I really enjoyed this book and the characters were pretty awesome as well, not to mention that the overall plot was very strong and energetic for the most part. So in the end those were the main things that kept me reading until the very end and if you love Japanese myths combined with modern day settings and awesome characters, then this is definitely your kind of book for sure!

The Rating
4/5 stars


  1. I have heard so many people rave about Zoe Marriott, I honestly don't know why I haven't read any of her books yet. The Night Itself sounds really good! I'm interested in Japan in general, so learning about the mythology would definitely be cool. I like the sound of the quirky characters too! Great review :).

    1. Thanks Liz. I think you'll love this book. It was a lot of fun to read. :)


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