Review: Dark Breaks the Dawn by Sara B. Larson

Dark Breaks the Dawn by Sara B. LarsonDark Breaks the Dawn
Sara B. Larson
Scholastic Press
Published May 30th, 2017

Amazon | Barnes & Noble Goodreads

About Dark Breaks the Dawn

On her eighteenth birthday, Princess Evelayn of Eadrolan, the Light Kingdom, can finally access the full range of her magical powers. The light looks brighter, the air is sharper, and the energy she can draw when fighting feels almost limitless.

But while her mother, the queen, remains busy at the war front, in the Dark Kingdom of Dorjhalon, the corrupt king is plotting. King Bain wants control of both kingdoms, and his plan will fling Evelayn onto the throne much sooner than she expected.

In order to defeat Bain and his sons, Evelayn will quickly have to come into her ability to shapeshift, and rely on the alluring Lord Tanvir. But not everyone is what they seem, and the balance between the Light and Dark comes at a steep price.

My Review

This is the first retelling of Swan Lake that I have come across, and while it wasn’t quite what I was expecting, I still enjoyed it. The characters for the most part were enjoyable, and I liked how in this book the romance progressed steadily and seemed like a positive relationship. No painful love triangles and drama here! I wasn’t a fan of the scenes from Lorcan’s and Lothar’s POV. I think the author was trying to create sympathy for them, but I still didn’t like them a whole lot. And it just left me with a lot of unanswered questions.

The world-building definitely carries the book however. It was excellent, very well thought out with a unique magic system. One thing that threw me for a loop at first though was that this book is not about humans–it’s about Draiolon, a race of fae-like creatures who live centuries, and have skin and hair colors in a variety of shades–blue, green, white, gold, you name it. The Light Draiolon wield the powers of Summer–heat, fire, light, etc. The Dark Draiolon wield the powers of Winter– cold, shadowflame, darkness, etc. It took me an embarrassing long time to figure this stuff out. I finally caught on when I realized that the words “people,” “man,” and “woman” weren’t used because the book isn’t about humans. Instead, words like “Draiolon,” “male,” and “female” are used.

One thing that kinda bugged me about this book however was that the retelling aspect of the book didn’t come into play until the very end. Hopefully the sequel will explore more of the original story, although it seems like there is still a lot of questions to be answered for it to be just a duology. Dark Breaks the Dawn earns 4 out of 5 stars in my opinion, and is perfect for fans of high fantasy in the vein of Tolkien.


An Enchantment of Ravens on Amazon
Recommended for Ages 15 up.

Cultural Elements
All of the characters are Draiolan, with there being two distinct races–the Light Draiolan, and the Dark Draiolan.

Profanity/Crude Language Content
None that I can recall–possibly fantasy-style swearing.

Romance/Sexual Content
Heavy kissing/embracing, touching, attraction, lust, mention of producing an heir.

Spiritual Content
High-fantasy style magic and rituals.

Violent Content
Deaths, attacks, abuse, magical violence, etc–some graphic encounters. One especially heartbreaking death.

Drug Content
None that I can recall beyond drinking at feasts.

An Enchantment of Ravens on Goodreads

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