I was lucky enough to win a physical ARC of Down Comes the Night from Allison in one of her giveaways (which I’m still screaming about!) and received a digital ARC from Wednesday Books through NetGalley. This is one of my most anticipated reads for 2021 and I absolutely loved it. If you’re a fan of enemies-to-lovers, only one bed trope, and some strange, but awesome magic – then keep reading!
I was given a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. This has not impacted my review and all thoughts and feelings are my own.
Down Comes the Night by Allison Saft
Release Date: March 2, 2021
Publisher: Wednesday Books
Genre: YA Fantasy
He saw the darkness in her magic. She saw the magic in his darkness.
Wren Southerland’s reckless use of magic has cost her everything: she’s been dismissed from the Queen’s Guard and separated from her best friend—the girl she loves. So when a letter arrives from a reclusive lord, asking Wren to come to his estate, Colwick Hall, to cure his servant from a mysterious illness, she seizes her chance to redeem herself.
The mansion is crumbling, icy winds haunt the caved-in halls, and her eccentric host forbids her from leaving her room after dark. Worse, Wren’s patient isn’t a servant at all but Hal Cavendish, the infamous Reaper of Vesria and her kingdom’s sworn enemy. Hal also came to Colwick Hall for redemption, but the secrets in the estate may lead to both of their deaths.
With sinister forces at work, Wren and Hal realize they’ll have to join together if they have any hope of saving their kingdoms. But as Wren circles closer to the nefarious truth behind Hal’s illness, they realize they have no escape from the monsters within the mansion. All they have is each other, and a startling desire that could be their downfall.
Allison Saft’s Down Comes the Night is a snow-drenched romantic fantasy that keeps you racing through the pages long into the night.
Love makes monsters of us all.
When I got the email that I won a copy of this book, I audibly gasped. This is one of my most anticipated reads for this year and to see that I was getting a physical ARC left me speechless. I often say that I’m not lucky or I have no luck, but I was feeling lucky that day when I found out I won. And finally getting a copy of that book in my hands was so exciting.
And this book did not disappoint.
I have always been a fan of gothic fantasties and really began to fall in love with the genre more after Wicked Saints. The first thing that caught my eye in this book was the fact that our main character, Wren, is bisexual. She is in love with her commanding officer, Una, who likes to pretend that she’s blind to Wren’s feelings. Una’s tough shell is no deterrent for Wren though, who desperately wants to take things to the next level with her, even if she knows it’s wrong. My one problem with the beginning though is that Wren feels pretty one dimensional here. She’s the love sick puppy who wants to stay by Una’s side, even if it means doing the thing she hates the most – hurting people.
Once Wren makes it out of the city and towards Lowry’s manor though, we see her personality begin to shine. Upon taking the risk to abandon her post at the abbey and do what she thinks is right for her country, Wren becomes a deserter, a fighter, and a patriot at the same time. No longer is she waiting around for orders from Una, she’s making her own decisions and doing what she believes is right. Until she comes face to face with Hal Cavendish, her country’s number one sworn enemy. Yet, instead of immediately running back to Una like we think she’s going to do, she decides to stay to treat him, so she can bring him in herself.
Once Hal is in the picture, I already knew it was endgame for Wren. Hal is a broody, tough guy with a marshmallow inside. He doesn’t want to be the savage fighter and war criminal, he wants peace. And while he likes to present himself as this tough guy persona, we all know he’s a big softy. One thing I wish we had though is the “only soft for you” trope. Hal has lost his edge and suddenly is a peaceful guy who doesn’t want to fight anymore, and while I love that change of heart, I didn’t want him to lose his stoicism or his rough edges. I wanted him to keep his appearance as a tough guy, while being soft and sweet for Wren. I did not get my wish.
Of course there’s Lowry, who adds a little personality spice into this mix. He’s definitely a strange man who is dramatic and drastic, but it keeps things interesting. I wish we got to learn more about him, seeing as Wren was staying in his home, but from the moments we get with him and learn about him, it’s clear this guy is very strange.
One thing I loved a lot about this book, was the plot. The series of events that unfolded in this story were so intense and I couldn’t put down this book for a moment. There were so many twists and turns, some I saw through and others I didn’t. By the end, I felt like I had gone on a rollercoaster with all the emotions I was feeling. Overall, I loved this book and while it has its faults, I loved it anyways. I honestly wish it wasn’t a standalone, I need more Wren and Hal!
If this book sounds interesting, check out Wicked Saints by Emily Duncan (for the gothic fantasy) or Soulswift by Megan Bannen (for the enemies to lovers).