The Thorn and the Sinking Stone (Thorn & Dagger, #1) by CJ Dushinski

24846577Book Synopsis:
Expected publication: March 10th 2015 by Entangled Teen
247 pages | goodreads-badge-add-black-38px

Warring families. Forbidden love. And danger they can’t escape…

Daggers. Roses. Cowboys. Boat Men. Survivors of Earth’s Last War, four “families” vie to rule the dreary streets of Rain City through violence and blood. Valencia Hara, Princess of the wealthy Black Roses, is raised in warrior ways with sharpened steel. But she is no ordinary Rose. She is Cursed—tainted with the ability to see seconds into the future…

To avenge his father’s death, Sebastian Leold, of the rival gang Two Daggers, must face off against the Black Princess, he with his dagger, she with her katana sword. Yet a secret from a shared past leaves him unable to kill beautiful Valencia; nor can she kill him. For they once knew each other beyond their blood feud…and they have more secrets in common than they know.

But in a world filled with vengeance and violence, there can be no room for love…

Book Review: 3_Stars73/4

~A kind thank you to NetGalley and Entangled Teen for providing me with a copy of The Thorn and the Sinking
Stone in exchange for an honest review. ~

Four great houses now ruled Rain City, each as different and deadly as the next, but the Black
Roses were the only ones to train in the art of Samurai.
CJ Dushinski | The Thorn and the Sinking Stone

Romeo and Juliet develop powers and meet a dystopian society. That is probably the simplest way that I can explain this one to you dear readers. And quite frankly, it was rather awesome.

Set years into the future four ‘families’ vie to become the leaders of Rain City. There is a death for a death mentality between two of the waring families, who have been killing each other for years in a never ending feud. Valencia is the princess of the Black Roses. She’s been training her whole life to be a warrior, with a kickass samurai sword. But she’s Cursed. She has the ability to see fate lines, which makes her the ultimate weapon. After the murder of the Two Daggers leader, the Daggers seek revenge. In an attempt to finally end the feud between the waring houses Valencia is deemed suitable to fight Sebastian, one of the leaders sons. But the Watchmen don’t take kindly to the waring families constant parade of murder, and when they intervene trouble ensues and romance blooms.

Dushinski weaves together all of my favourite things in a YA novel rather flawlessly. Unrequited love, supernatural powers in a dystopian society …sign me up always! I did find that the world building was slightly lacking, only because the waring families didn’t rule the world but someone did. And the Watchmen worked for them, but I still have no idea who they are…am I missing something obvious?

There is slight insta love, although thank the book heavens that none of the romantic teens say the ‘L’ world. So it’s more like insta like…which I completely understand given the like is in reference to Sebastian. Although I do truly believe their connection has more to do with Valencia’s power to see fate lines, which would make such an awesome twist.

The end of the novel took a really interesting turn. The Cursed aren’t favoured. In fact it is illegal to be a Cursed, to befriend a Cursed, to really be associated with them in all regards. Which isn’t quite a leap of understanding, given the negative connotations associated with ‘cursed’. If you’re caught you end up in prison where they run horrible tests on you until you die. For what reason, it is yet uncertain, but it surely has something to do with whoever is actually running Rain City. And of course if there are circumstances such as these then there is a rebel following, and I look forward to seeing how that pans out in the next novel.

It was a great, fast paced read, with a really great cast of characters. There is humour and love, awesome fighting scenes and just a really great (slightly missing something) world.

Definitely pick the one up!



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