Shadow and Bone sounded like it had potential for a fun read, but unfortunately for me it fell flat. The writing was not poor and the main characters weren't terrible although they were dull, but overall I felt like I've read the story before. There were many cliche elements to the plot, including a love interest which went into love triangleville (for a time at least). There were elements that reminded me of Poison Study but it only proved to make it feel even more unoriginal. In addition I greatly disliked the addition of "foreign" words when the majority of the text is in one particular language. It is like speaking with a Russian accent for a movie when the entire time English is spoken. That always makes me go WTF? Speaking of Russian, elements of the story were meant to be reminiscent of Russia and Russian folklore, which should be a good thing for me but it proved frustrating. Bardugo clearly knows little about Russia, otherwise her characters would not suffer from gender confusion. Female first names but male last names (such as the main character Alina Starkov, it should be Alina Starkova) and vice versa, and yes this matters in Russia. Overall, just not an original or entertaining read and I won't be coming back for more.