The Shadow and Bone series by Leigh Bardugo is an entrancing series of books that has recently been adapted to a Netflix series. Readers are drawn to its captivating setting, mystical plotline, and romantic tension, and the series has gained a ton of loyal readers.
Alina grew up as an orphan with her friend Mal in Russia. While out on The Fold, she rescues Mal from monsters who prey on humans, unexpectedly drawing on her unknown power. When it is discovered that she is a Sun Summoner, she is taken by the Darkling, the leader of the Grisha people, to the city capital.
Although her power could ultimately save the Grisha people from evil forces that threaten their society, Alina receives word that the Darkling has ulterior motives for Alina. In order to survive, she must push aside her growing feelings for the Darkling and flee.
The sequence of books follows Alina’s journey as the Sun Summoner, detailing her dangerous yet captivating dance with the Darkling as powers shift and dangers await her at every turn.
If you’re one of the many readers who are a tad obsessed with Alina and the Darkling and you’re on the search for read-alikes, read on. We’ve compiled the best list to satisfy your craving for more stories similar to Alina’s. The recommendations below feature strong heroines, fantastical worlds, epic journeys, and a dash of romance.
Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo
If you’re a fan of Shadow and Bone, Bardugo’s duology, Six of Crows should be next on your TBR list. Set in the same Grisha world as Shadow and Bone, the series follows criminal Kaz Brekker.
Kaz has agreed to a dangerous task: rescue the inventor of a drug while keeping the dangerous substance he created secret. As Kaz and his companions attempt the impossible, they risk everything for wealth.
A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas
In the first book of this series, Feyre is held captive in the magical land of Pyrithian as punishment for killing a faerie wolf. As she adapts to her surroundings and begins to fall for the Fae, she becomes aware of undercurrents that something evil is lurking in the land.
Sarah J. Maas is a queen in YA fantasy, and her readers are loyal for good reason. For a captivating plot, elements of high fantasy, and romantic tension between the lead characters, be sure to pick up A Court of Thorns and Roses.
Graceling by Kristin Cashore
Katsa has been born a Graceling, with her unparalleled power to kill. With her uncle in power, Katsa is commanded to kill innocent citizens, often defying his orders and instead saving them.
As more of her power is revealed to her and she falls for Prince Po, mysteries and secrets unravel and threaten to destroy her and the kingdoms. An enthralling series of novels with deep and entrancing characters, the Graceling trilogy will surely become one of your favorites.
The Cruel Prince by Holly Black
Holly Black is the queen of fantasy, and The Cruel Prince, the first installment of The Folk of the Air series, is a seriously devious and enchanting tale. Meet Jude: her parents were murdered when she was a child by the Faerie, who then brought her and her sisters to live in their court.
Fast forward over a decade later and all she wants is to belong in the court. Yet Faeries hate humans, especially Prince Cardan. If Jude wants to be recognized as one of the Court, she must follow her heart, risk upsetting Prince Cardan, and eventually save her sisters and the entire Court from demise.
Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard
When Mare lands a job working in the Silver Palace among the ruling class, she uncovers a special power within herself. The Silvers are terrified that Mare’s power has the potential to disrupt the status quo and devise a plan to beguile the commoners and claim her as their own.
Yet secretly, Mare has allied with the Red Guard to take down the Silvers, a delicate and dangerous dance that has the potential to change or even end her life.
From Blood and Ash by Jennifer L. Armentrout
As Maiden, Poppy has only ever had one purpose in life: to wait for her Ascension when she rises to power. Poppy’s life is turned upside down when Hawke is assigned to be her protector, and Poppy’s heart and kingdom are both at risk of being forever changed.
For a steamy, beautiful novel featuring a fierce heroine, be sure to add the entire Blood and Ash series to your TBR.
Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi
For a powerful, award-winning stand-alone novel that features magic and a strong heroine, Tomi Adeyemi’s Children of Blood and Bone. Prior to the events of the book, King Saran turned off the magic of the diviners and subsequently killed them.
When his daughter, Princess Amari, recovers a scroll that activates the diviners’ power, she joins up with Tzain and his magical sister Zélie to recover artifacts that will rekindle the connection between the gods and the diviners, and ultimately return magic to the land.
Hot on their heels are Princess Amari’s brother and his crew, who hope to recover the scroll and return order to the land. Filled with adventure, Yoruba culture, romantic tension, and West African mythology, this incredible work will take your breath away.
Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers
For a heart-thumping historical fantasy series, pick up Grave Mercy, the first in the His Fair Assassins series. When Ismae escapes an ill-fated future of an arranged marriage, she ends up at a convent where the nuns are assassins.
After she is trained to be an assassin and a handmaiden to Death, her adventures lead her to Gavriel, who steals her heart, but who is also her next target.
Silver Phoenix by Cindy Pon
Cindy Pon has written some incredible science fiction and fantasy books, among them being the Kingdom of Xia series.
Despite having brought shame to her family, Ai Ling is relieved to not be betrothed to anyone. But when she sets off on a journey to find her father, she encounters demons, monsters, and Chen Yong, who saves her from death and sparks something in her heart.
Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor
Charou lives in the mysterious city of Prague, running errands for the chimera who raised her and never fully knowing where she belongs. When seraph Akiva, who is known for killing chimeras, lays eyes on her, the two are instantly entwined and a battle between good and evil is unleashed.
Enchanting and mysterious descriptions will draw you as a reader into the story, and the mystical plot line will entrance you. Do yourself a favor and pick up the entire series.
Cinder by Marissa Meyer
The Lunar Chronicles, with its first installment of Cinder, is a wild hybrid of fairytale and science fiction. Cinder is a cyborg whose path serendipitously crosses with Prince Kai. Shortly after meeting, the two are launched into an adventure to save Earth from the oncoming invasion of the Lunar people and plague.
The Crown’s Game by Evelyn Skye
When you pick up The Crown’s Game, the first in Skye’s series, prepare for a magical ride filled with romance and betrayal. When the tsar requires the services of an enchanter, a competition between Nikolai and Vika begins. Both possess magic of very different natures, and both understand the terms of the competition: one enchanter will win and the other will die.
As the two compete, their feelings towards each other deepen and the heir to the throne, who is also Nikolai’s best friend, gets involved.
We Rule the Night by Claire Eliza Bartlett
A stand-alone novel featuring strong heroines who endure impossible feats, We Rule the Night focuses on Revna and Linné. The girls join other female aviators in a flight unit who are tasked with conducting bombings on their enemy The Elda. Using their magic, and trying to push aside their differences, the girls are placed in dangerous and life-threatening situations.
Through the White Wood by Jessica Leake
Set in lush and beautiful Russia, this stand alone novel from Jessica Leake will captivate you. After being banished to Prince Sasha’s palace when she lost her ability to control her power to freeze, Katya at first fears the prince.
As she learns that his power of summoning fire is similar to hers, the two spark a romance. When they must work together to save the world, Katya fears that their powers will not be enough.
Beasts of the Frozen Sun by Jill Criswell
For a beautiful, forbidden romance, layered with gods and war, dive into the Frozen Sun Saga. When Lira meets Reyker, she knows that he is from the land she’s been warned about. Yet she tends to him and the two tumble into a web of feelings for each other.
When Lira’s life is at stake and her love for Reyker swirls up trouble in the form of a war, she must embark on a battle to save all she loves.
Realm Breaker by Victoria Aveyard
When Corayne learns that she belongs to a magical lineage, she joins a motley crew of companions who help her awaken her magic. She is whisked away on an adventure to help save the land from evil forces.
Drawing comparisons to Lord of the Rings, this epic journey and intricate world-building sets Aveyard apart, converting legions of readers to loyal followers. Do yourself a favor and stock up on the entire series so you can seamlessly tear your way through each book.
Seventh Sun by Lani Forbes
Prince Ahkin and Mayana are the match that the Chicome people need: Ahkin’s blood controls the sun, while Mayana’s blood controls the water. When Prince Ahkin must choose a bride and Mayana is one of the young women presented to him, they realize the fate of their people rests upon their shoulders, and they must act swiftly as a comet and the sun threaten their world.
A rich novel full of passion, magic, and destiny, readers who loved Shadow and Bone will luxuriate in The Age of the Seventh Sun series.
The Shadows Between Us by Tricia Levenseller
For a villainous protagonist who is as seductive as she is devious, pick up The Shadows Between Us. Alessandra is finally going to take what she thinks she deserves. Her way in? By marrying The Shadow King and taking his power after she kills him.
But she isn’t the only one with their sights set on killing the King, and as she tries to protect him just long enough to become his wife, her intentions become clouded by her growing feelings for him.
The Queen’s Assassin by Melissa de la Cruz
The first in a duology, The Queen’s Assassin pairs the magic from Shadow and Bone with a love story. When Cal, who is the Queen’s Assassin and has been trained to kill, meets Shadow, an apprentice with hopes of joining the ranks of the Guild, the two have an instant attraction.
As they uncover dark truths about their land, the two must work together to survive and prevent war from unfolding across the land.
Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake
For a wild ride, full of magic, betrayal, and sibling rivalry, pick up the Three Dark Crowns series. In the first book, sisters Mirabella, Katharine, and Arsinoe have just turned sixteen…and only one of them will become queen. Forced to use their magic to fight to the death, the last surviving sister will be crowned.
How many books are in the Shadow and Bone series?
There are 4 books in Leigh Bardugo’s Shadow and Bone series.
What other books has Leigh Bardugo written?
Leigh Bardugo has written several other books including The Language of Thorns, Siege and Storm, and The Lives of Saints, among others.
Do I need to read the Six of Crows duology before the Shadow and Bone series?
No, but it is recommended to read the Shadow and Bone series before the Six of Crows series to fully understand the Grishaverse.
Authors with similar writing styles to Leigh Bardugo include Sarah J. Maas, Holly Black, and Laini Taylor.
Is the Shadow and Bone Netflix series similar to the books?
Yes, the Netflix series is very similar to the book series, but changes the timeline between the Shadow and Bone series and the Six of Crows series.
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