ARC Review! Shadow Frost by Coco Ma

When Asterin Faelenhart, Princess of Axaria and heir to the throne, discovers that she may hold the key to defeating the mysterious demon terrorizing her kingdom, she vows not to rest until the beast is slain. With the help of her friends and the powers she wields — though has yet to fully understand — Asterin sets out to complete a single task. The task that countless, trained soldiers have failed. 

To kill it. 

But as they hunt for the demon, they unearth a plot to assassinate the Princess herself instead. Asterin and her companions begin to wonder how much of their lives have been lies, especially when they realize that the center of the web of deceit might very well be themselves. With no one else to turn to, they are forced to decide just how much they are willing to sacrifice to protect the only world they have ever known. 

That is, of course… if the demon doesn’t get to them first.

This was such a fun book to read! I flew through the pages, and was amazed when I found out the author was only 15 when she wrote it.

Princess Asterin is the only heir to to Axarian throne, has been raised not only to be able to rule but also to be able to fight for her country. When Asterin learns there is a monster wreaking havoc on her kingdom, she begs her mother to allow her and a select few of her guards to find the monster and defeat it. Along with her maid, guardian, the captain of her guard and two warriors sent from a neighbouring kingdom, Asterin travels through her kingdom in search of the monster, but no one is prepared for the truth behind the attacks, least of all Asterin.

Asterin was a really fun character, I thoroughly enjoyed following her on her journey. She is a typical teenage girl in some ways and old beyond her years in others. Loyal, head strong and brimming with potential, she has no idea how much strength she possesses, not just in her magic but also in the group of friends that surround her.There was only one part of the book that I truly didn’t like her in, I wont spoil it but I felt that what happened was majorly out of character for her. That being said, I am all for a good crew/gang and I loved reading the interactions between this group of characters. They reminded me so much of me and my friends growing up ( minus me being a princess and you know… mortal danger.)

I was wary when I started reading this that it would turn into a love triangle story line but I was pleasantly surprised with how it turned out. There are a multitude of relationships shown through this book from friendship, hidden romance, m/m and the sweet enticement of first love to name a few. I wouldn’t say the romance features heavily, but it is prevalent throughout the book. It is by no means steamy and there are no sex scenes, which is understandable when you take in the authors age when she wrote it.

I’m still slightly in awe at realising the author wrote this book at 15. The descriptions she uses are beautifully written and I found myself flying through the pages eager to follow Asterin and her gang on their journey. The only minus point I have is that the middle part of the book seemed to drag slightly, whereas the end seemed slightly rushed. I also felt there were parts of the book where characters did an almost 360 based on their previous actions and ideals, this threw me a little bit and made me have to re-read a few pages just to check I had read it right.

This book is a 4/5 for me. There were plenty of twists and turns, some I saw coming and some that thew me for a loop! But I definitely ended this book entertained and slightly in love with a couple of the characters. I will warn any adult readers who enjoy YA that this is written for a much younger audience stretching almost to some MG books I read. This however, didn’t effect my allover love for this book, I would still highly recommend it and will definitely be picking up the sequel when it is released.


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