Warning: this review may contain some spoilers.
“Fourth Wing” by Rebecca Yarros is a fantasy book with adventure and romance. I was hooked from the very first sentence: “A dragon without its rider is a tragedy, a rider without their dragon is dead. Welcome to the fourth wing.” The world is split into four quadrants: riders, healers, scribes and infantry. The book follows Violet Sorrengail, who was trained to be a scribe her entire life but decided to go to the rider quadrant. During her time in the rider quadrant, she faced mental and physical challenges but always managed to stay alive.
The magic in this world is something I have never read before. The people themselves do not have any magic, they have to bond with a dragon and then they get a signet. In order to bond with a dragon, the trainees first must go through training to weed out the weak ones. Once they make it through training, the dragons then get to decide who they do and do not like and literally incinerate the trainees they do not. Finally, the trainees get to go through threshing. This is when the dragon bonds with one of the trainees and the flight training begins. The timing of the signet is different for everyone and, according to the book, the power the person gets reflects their personality.
I felt the pacing of this book could have been a little faster. The entirety of the book held my attention from cover-to-cover and I am very excited about the next book coming out soon, but there were parts of this book that just seemed to drag on. Personally, I think the individual training could have been cut down and the training with the dragons could have been longer. The dragons were easily my favorite characters with their sarcastic comments about what the humans were doing and I would have liked to see more of that.
The other main characters in this book include Dain Aetos, Rhiannon Matthias, Xaden Riorson, Liam Mairi and Jack Barlowe. There are plenty of other side characters to love and hate. Yarros did an amazing job of writing the good, bad and morally gray characters to where you just have to love and hate them. Her writing style and world building is done well and again, this book held my attention from cover to cover. This book made me sob like a baby, which cannot be said about most. Some of the plot twists I did not see coming and some, in my opinion, were very predictable.