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Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Review: The Grisha Novellas by Leigh Bardugo

Publisher: Macmillan
Published: June 2012-April 2014
Pages: 107
Source: Bought
Rating: 4 Stars



The Witch of Duva:
There was a time when the woods near Duva ate girls...or so the story goes. But it’s just possible that the danger may be a little bit closer to home.

The Too-Clever Fox:
In Ravka, just because you avoid one trap, it doesn't mean you'll escape the next.

Little Knife:
In this third Ravkan folk tale from Leigh Bardugo, a beautiful girl finds that what her father wants for her and what she wants for herself are two different things.

When I reviewed The Assassin's Blade, a series of novellas from the Throne of Glass Series by Sarah J. Maas, I talked about how THIS was how a novella should be done. Because more often than not, novellas just strike me as being so superfluous and inessential to the series at large, and the reason that the Throne of Glass novellas resonated with me was because they are completely relevant and significant to the overall series story.

Well, I may need to eat my own words here because there are other instances in which I feel like novellas are worthwhile besides just being an essential part of the series story. Case in point: these Ravkan folktales that Leigh Bardugo published that have nothing to do with Alina Starkov's story in Shadow and Bone, but are all relevant to the Grishaverse and the Ravkan culture that we got to experience in Shadow and Bone.

The little hints of Ravkan and Grisha culture that we got to see in Shadow and Bone were my favourite parts of Leigh Bardugo's skilled world building. The best high fantasy stories to me are the ones that seem like they really could be legitimate worlds with an added magical flair, and having an author go that extra mile to think of unique folktales for that world is really special.

And as with folktales in our own world, they all come with their own morals, which is always interesting to decipher. So if you are a fan of The Grisha Trilogy by Leigh Bardugo and if you enjoyed similar pretend-folktales like The Tales of Beedle the Bard by J.K. Rowling, then be sure to check out these Grisha novellas by Leigh Bardugo.

Previously, my reviews of Shadow and Bone, Siege and Storm, and Ruin and Rising.

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24 comments :

  1. I *SO* need to get going on the Grisha trilogy. It's shameful. I think those and the Graceling series are my biggest source of shame as an avid reader and fantasy lover XD I'm glad to see that the novellas are totally worthwhile, despite taking a different approach than the ToG novellas took. I'm all for any kind of extra information on a beloved fantasy world! Gods know that I never would have passed up Tales of Beedle the Bard ;)

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    1. Oh you DO!! But it's not shameful. It's just that I know you'll love them! And then you can read these novellas :)

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  2. I NEED TO READ THESE AYLEE! I agree, the Assassin's Blade novellas were exceedingly well done and are what sold me on Celaena when Throne of Glass was a bit of a letdown for me, and now I couldn't love that series more. So glad to hear that these novellas, despite not relating to Alina directly, are equally successful. Can't wait to read!

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    1. Yay! Hurray for worthwhile novellas :)

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  3. I still need to read Ruin and Rising, Aylee! I need to be sure that Sturmhound is safe and very much present in the book. He definitely made me like Siege and Storm more.

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    1. Ooh, you should get to it! Don't be afraid!

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  4. Yay :D Awesome review Aylee. <3 I'm so happy you loved these novellas. I did too :) They are aaawesome. And yess. I love how they are sort of a part of the trilogy :) Either way, they are awesome. And I'm so glad you liked them too :)

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  5. The culture woven into this one sounds great-- I haven't read any of this series yet but I def want to

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  6. I haven't read this series, but it is on my list of things I need to get to soon. I'm glad you felt these novellas were worthwhile to read. I tend to ignore more novellas or short stories. haah

    -Lauren

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    1. Me too because they usually seem so pointless. But these ones and def worthwhile!

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  7. I am so bad at reading novellas. I loved the Grisha series but never read these short stories. So glad you enjoyed them! They sound really awesome and magical - and I of course loved The Tales of Beedle the Bard, so I think I'm going to have to read these at some point. Thanks for the review! :)

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    1. I guess I am bad at them too because I don't see the point of them for the most part. Whenever I come across one that seems worth reading, I always share on the blog :)

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  8. I didn't even know Bardugo had published novellas! Apparently I'm living under a rock. I'll of course be checking these out now. Thanks Aylee!

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    1. haha, well they weren't widely publicized.

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  9. I haven't read any of the Grisha novellas yet, but based on your raving review, maybe I should. It sounds like it would be nice refresher of the world, even if we don't get to see the characters.

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    1. Yeah, definitely. Maybe a good refresher for her new Grisha series!

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  10. I didn't realise what these were were novellas, but how interesting! I'm planning to read Shadow and Bone before Winter's out, and am so excited about that, but the fact that these are three novellas that are folk tales and build on the world is so, so clever. I'm not generally a fan of novellas- I loved The Assassin's Blade but that was the first time I'd really, really felt like I was entirely immersed in the world with enough time- but if I like the series I'll definitely be reading these. x

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    1. Ooh great idea, The Grisha series would be a great one to tide you over until Winter! And yes, I for sure feel the same as you about novellas, but never fear where these novella folktales are concerned!

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  11. You had me at The Tales of Beetle the Bard! The author's books have been sitting on my TBR since ages, and I will get to them soon. I'm so glad to know that the novellas aren't just adding up to nothing, but deliver in the most necessary sense. Lovely review, Aylee!

    Sarika @ The Readdicts

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    1. Hee, I figured I would catch many people's attention with a mention of The Tales of Beedle the Bard! Thanks, Sarika :)

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  12. "Because more often than not, novellas just strike me as being so superfluous and inessential to the series at large" - I've found that to be the case as well (except for Maas' novellas - they are incredible and add so much to the books/characters). Glad to hear that Bardugo's are excellent too! I'll have to check them out.

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  13. First of all, I loved Throne of Glass and I totally forgot about the novellas! Now I have to read them. Thanks for reminding me. :) And second I agree with the comparison to Tales of Beedle the Bard. They both were new folk/fairy tales that were unique and fun and beautiful. they really added to the world building and the world was one of my favorite things about Shadow and Bone (and Harry Potter, too :)

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