Book Review: Skylark

Skylark (The Skylark Trilogy #1)
Published By: Carolrhoda Lab
Publication Date: August 1, 2012
Page Count: 344
Source: Kindly Provided by Publisher via NetGalley
Audience: Young Adult - Fantasy, Multi-Genre

It is very hard to put Skylark into a genre. I started off reading a sci-fi adventure, which turned into a steampunk mystery, and then a horror with a fair dollop of fantasy thrown in... and it became a wonderful mash-up of all of those elements. I really liked the originality of this story. 

This is a really difficult plot to describe well, so I will let the summary provided by Goodreads do that! I really enjoyed following the protagonist, Lark, as she attempts to survive. She isn't very strong when she begins her journey and she keeps going beyond where I think I would have got to. Generally, I thought that she made good decisions and I liked her a lot. She was scared, but she pulled through. I do think that she was a little quick to move on emotionally at one point, as there is a little bit of a love story woven in here, and that element didn't completely convince me. That said, there was a really interesting development in that area of the plot which shocked the pants off me, and I LOVED that!! That was a "hat's off to the author" moment. 

Lark picks up a companion or two along her journey, and I really enjoyed those characters. I think the most interesting character of all is the mechanical pixie she travels with. It develops from an automaton into a really quite amusing character, and represents by far the most interestingly written steampunk I have read to date. I liked how I was never sure of which side it was on, and that helped to build the tension beautifully. I also really enjoyed getting to know Oren, the wild boy that Lark meets. Without him, she simply wouldn't have survived. I like how scathing he is of her at times, and their friendship develops really well.

There is a hefty dollop of horror in Skylark that had me on the edge of my seat, and I was genuinely a bit disturbed in one or two scenes... if I had to describe this book as the progeny of two others, I think I'd say that this is The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan meets Poison Study by Maria V Snyder, sprinkled with steampunk. I think this would also appeal to fans of Julie Kagawa. I loved it, and I will be looking forward to reading the sequel, Shadowlark, when it comes out in 2013. 

Sixteen year-old Lark Ainsley has never seen the sky.

Her world ends at the edge of the vast domed barrier of energy enclosing all that’s left of humanity. For two hundred years the city has sustained this barrier by harvesting its children's innate magical energy when they reach adolescence. When it’s Lark’s turn to be harvested, she finds herself trapped in a nightmarish web of experiments and learns she is something out of legend itself: a Renewable, able to regenerate her own power after it’s been stripped.

Forced to flee the only home she knows to avoid life as a human battery, Lark must fight her way through the terrible wilderness beyond the edge of the world. With the city’s clockwork creations close on her heels and a strange wild boy stalking her in the countryside, she must move quickly if she is to have any hope of survival. She’s heard the stories that somewhere to the west are others like her, hidden in secret – but can she stay alive long enough to find them?


  1. Excellent review. I enjoyed this one too, although not the pixies that much....I'm looking forward to the next one too.

    1. Thanks Annette! I am not sure if I'd say I enjoyed all the pixies all the time, but I definitely enjoyed the one which stayed with Lark. ;)

  2. the mere mention of appealing to Julie Kagawa've sold me! But I think I would want to read it had you not mentioned Julie, based on your excellent review! :)

    1. Lol...and how can a Reading LARK not read a book whose protag is named LARK?!!! lol!

    2. I did enjoy that several times while reading!!!

  3. Sounds really interesting. The premise sounds pretty cool and I like that it's original. I'm really curious about this insane plot point now. I love surprises.

    Great review, I hadn't heard much of this title before but now I'll check it out.

    1. That's great!!

      I honestly think that there was such a good twist. I am glad I read it without even thinking about that though as if I'd guessed it wouldn't have been so awesome! LOL!

  4. I am excited about this one! Looks interesting and unique. I just won a swag pack from the author too, so I cannot wait for that!


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