The Demon in the Wood by Leigh Bardugo
Grisha Series # 0.1
Published: August 18th 2015 by Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Before he ruled Ravka, before he was the Darkling, he was just a lonely boy with an extraordinary gift. In this prequel story to the New York Times-bestselling Grisha Trilogy, Leigh Bardugo takes us into Ravka’s mysterious past, when Grisha lived as fugitives and the Darkling took his first steps on the path to power. Discover new territory in the Grishaverse, as well as two chapters from the soon-to-be-released Six of Crows.
These were the trees he liked best, the kind that never lost their green, that always smelled of sap. In woods like these, it felt like summer was still alive, as if a sun were buried in every rough trunk like a warm, dormant heart.
This could have easily been an actual prequel to the whole Grisha series instead of a novella! The Darkling deserves an entire book for himself, or maybe even a spinoff! This made me feel so much for the young boy who would soon become the Darkling.
This novella doesn’t spoil anything for the Grisha trilogy, and it makes me want to go reread the series all over again! I have always been sympathetic to his character in the series, and this further emphasized that feeling. Just like all of Bardugo’s short stories set in this universe, there is a twist that I didn’t see coming. I should have based upon what the Grisha was facing during this time, but it just further emphasized the lengths that people will go for power.
If you are a fan of the series, I would definitely suggest you check out this very short story on the Darkling. You won’t be disappointed, except perhaps only by the length of the novella.