Since life is short, and money not too easy to come by, I run a couple of TBR lists including one for books I hope to be able to get from the library - there's no way I could possibly afford to buy everything that sounds good and, to be honest, I've been burned many times by books that sound like they were written for me but turn out to be disappointments... Night Shine was on that list as soon as I heard about it, then I was fortunate enough to get an e-ARC.
I can imagine, if Night Shine had been about when I was in the target audience age category (so, many years ago...), I would have been completely obsessed with this book. It certainly has many of the things involved in it that draw me even now when it comes to fantasy books: a search for your own identity, a found family, a mysterious destiny you can't quite figure out. Our protagonist, we discover at the outset of the book, is Nothing - we first meet her killing the prince to whom she is bound because he's not himself but an impostor, while she's the only one who realises this.
The real prince, Kirin, has been kidnapped and is currently held captive by a sorceror who has a bit of a reputation for usually stealing the hearts of teenage girls - there are plenty of Names In All Capital Letters in this book, in time-honoured fantasy tradition, as well as true names that give you power over the other person. In this case, Kirin has a bit of a secret known only to a few that makes him a target for this sorceror as well.
Along with the prince's bodyguard, Nothing sets out to rescue the prince and that all seems pretty straightforward to begin with: rescue the prince, get him accepted as heir to the throne, get on with your life as before. Except, as Nothing is to discover, there's a link between her and the sorceror that has to do with her own identity and she can't help picking away at it even if it challenges what little she thought she knew. Kirin, after all, is not the only one who's not quite what he seems to be.
If there's one fault with Night Shine, it's that at times there's a little too much navel-gazing for my liking, so I'm feeling mean and dropped it from 5 stars to 4. There's a lot to like about this book though, so I hope it sells well and plenty of other people get to enjoy it too.
Thanks to the author and publisher for a free advance copy of this book, which I received in exchange for an honest review.