Sunday, 25 November 2012

Skylark (Skylark #1)

Skylark (Skylark #1) by Meagan Spooner

Rating: 4 stars

When magic is the source of all power (literally), wouldn't some people do anything to control it? Skylark is a percular (in a good way), different and other-worldly book. It is very different from any other books I have read. Meagan Spooner invents a story world where people with magic is the source of all energy and poses the question: once that energy is gone, where do they obtain more?

This book is not one of your typical YA, angry teen confusion and useless love triangles. On top of a drawing and intriguing story, Skylark, in my opinion, also deals with questions about humanity and the future. Is a closed-off and tightly controlled community worth an ultimate sacrifice of one individual (or perhaps a few individuals)? Aside from the humanity question, I also enjoyed the original idea of having magic as the a source for providing energy. The indoctrination of the so-called "Institute" (kind of like the government) obmits the truth of a celebrated event called "the Havest" from the citizens of the City. This was what led to Lark (the main character)'s discovery being so shocking and attention-grabbing to the reader. 

The story world of Lark is different from many I had encountered. Although the "Outside" and "Inside" aspect had been written numerous times by YA authors, Meagan Spooner made the aloof and cold world of Skylark stand out. The writing of the author also enabled me to imagine every little detail of the forest, the magic pockets and the city; as well as picturing tiny movements of the pixies and the character's actions. I particularly liked the description of the "Outside" world. Although dangerous, it seemed like a wonderful and magical place to explore. As I read the story, I closed my eyes and it seemed that I was in this bluish-purplish space (just like the book cover) and seeing everything in a surreal fashion. 

Another reason I enjoyed the story was the character of Lark. As the main character, Lark develops through the story. Right from the beginning, Lark was careful, genuine and intelligent. She used her intelligence to figure out things that any other adult wouldn't question and made decisions that were hard. Through the course of events, Lark became braver and stronger (she had always been adventurous). I appreciated the strong family bond between Lark and her brother, the trust and hope Lark has for him even though all odds were set against him. Nix was also a constant and caring companion I enjoyed, I hope Nix stays with Lark in the next book. The relationship between Lark and Oren is something I loved reading about. This relationship too, develops from its original tentative and enstranged state into something worthy. Oren was a mysterious character whom I didn't quite understand until the very end. However, he was protective and had a good survival instinct. The ending of Skylark left me wondering about the two and I'm eager to find out what happens next. 

However, there was still some little things that could have made the book slightly better. One of such is the amount of one-character time in the book. It was not monologues as such, but sometimes (especially the first half of the book) there were too much running around alone time with Lark. Having a character by herself for a long period of time is not very interesting to read and thus I didn't really got fully drawn into the story until quite a bit into the book. Once other characters (particularly human characters) came into the book and interactions were made, the plot became a lot more interesting. I know that this was quite hard to do in relation with this particular story, but I would like to see less of just the main character running around in the forest by herself in the next book.  

Overall, a book I really enjoyed. The ending also leaves me hanging and desperate to read the next book. Recommended! :) 


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. I know what you mean about the character running around in the woods by herself thing. That can be really annoying, but it sounds like this was a good book. I haven't read this one yet, but it sounds like something I'd enjoy. Great review :)

    Jesse @ Pretty in Fiction

  2. I'm glad you loved Skylark, and that you found it really unique and with a likable character:)

    Awesome review:)

  3. Well then I shall look forward to read this one. :D

  4. Oh,it has a cliffhanger. I have when that happens but at the same time it makes me want the second book even more. Need to check this book up soon. Sounds interesting. And you're giving away some swag. I'm going to enter. You did a great job with your review. :)

    Zemira @ YA Fanatic

  5. I like the idea of a world that uses magic as energy. I'll check this book out.

  6. I have been fascinated by Skylark since the first time that I read the synopsis. The possibility of a unique YA read makes it even more exciting for me. I love that the main character is intelligent, brave and smart. Not just jumping but thinking about the consequences of her actions. That is a trait that I feel should be used much more often, especially in books aimed at teens. What a great example that can be! Skylark sounds brilliant, and the cover is amazing. I can't wait to have the chance to read it. Thanks for the review!

  7. Sounds interesting! Thanks for your thoughts! I will be adding it to my to-read list.

  8. I've been eyeing Skylark and wondering if I should put it on my wishlist but wasn't sure. But I think I will, it sounds really interesting especially with the magic and energy idea. Thanks for the review!

  9. The first paragraph of your review had me. Without a doubt it had me. I can't wait to read this book. The cover blows me away every time I see it. It is unique and different. It has magic in it. It has everything that I love in a book, and I can't wait for it. Seriously, I really can't. Thanks for the great review!