This Savage Song: Monsters of Verity, Book 1
By Michael Berry,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Complex fantasy expertly explores good and evil.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Raises questions about the proper use of political power and whether people have free will in designing their own destinies.
Children can break away from their families' evil behavior.
Positive Role Models
Although he sees himself as a monster, August struggles to be good, fighting the hunger that could destroy innocents. Kate at first accepts her bad side but eventually decides to change her behavior.
Violence & Scariness
Some scenes of intense violence. Characters actively and passively allow the deaths of family members. There are gunfights, stabbings, and attacks by monsters with fearsome teeth and claws. August uses music as a weapon against his supernatural foes.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Violence & Scariness in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Sex, Romance & Nudity
Kate and August seem to be developing feelings for each other, but any romantic relationship is on hold by the end of the book.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Sex, Romance & Nudity in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Occasional rough language, including a half dozen uses of "s--t" and its variants, one or two uses of "f--k." "Damn" and "hell" are used a few times each.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Language in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that This Savage Song: Monsters of Verity, Book 1 is the first half of an action-packed urban fantasy by Victoria Schwab. It features main characters who struggle against their respective dark sides. The language is occasionally rough: a half dozen uses of "s--t" and its variants; one or two uses of "f--k," and a handful of "damn" and "hell." Some violent scenes feature stabbings, gunfights, and magic. Characters actively or passively participate in the deaths of their family members. There's a spark between August and Kate, but there is little time to pursue romance in this installment.
Where to Read
Based on 5 parent reviews
Victoria Schwab never ceases to impress me
Report this review
Who is a Monster
Report this review
What's the Story?
In THIS SAVAGE SONG, when Kate Harker decides to burn down the chapel at her boarding school, she finally gets her wish to return to the divided city over which her ruthless father rules one side. When she transfers to a new school in Verity, she meets August, who looks human but is actually a monster working undercover for his family. The Harkers and the Flynns must abide by the shaky truce that governs the city, and there are forces that wish to tear the peace asunder. Kate and August must call upon their better selves to spare the lives of thousands of innocents, if only they can trust each other.
Is It Any Good?
Rich in character, original in its world-building, and unpredictable in its plotting, this offbeat urban fantasy finds nuance in the battle between good and evil. This Savage Song focuses on two characters who believe themselves to be villains and eventually see the good parts of themselves. Author Victoria Schwab keeps the narrative pressure on August and Kate as they attempt to protect each other against a deadly conspiracy, and their intense interplay makes this novel stand out. Schwab excels at this kind of immersive saga, and this volume's cliffhanger ending will leave her fans eager for more.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about the ways in which This Savage Song depicts the concepts of good and evil. Can people redeem themselves after they've committed a terrible act?
What role does violence play in This Savage Song? How can people work together to prevent violence?
What might it be like to live in a divided city, where peace endures only under a fragile truce?
- Author: Victoria Schwab
- Genre: Fantasy
- Topics: Magic and Fantasy, Adventures, Monsters, Ghosts, and Vampires
- Book type: Fiction
- Publisher: Greenwillow Books
- Publication date: June 7, 2016
- Publisher's recommended age(s): 14 - 18
- Number of pages: 464
- Available on: Nook, Audiobook (unabridged), Hardback, iBooks, Kindle
- Last updated: July 13, 2017
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.
Suggest an Update
Where to Read
Our Editors Recommend
Romantic Fantasy Books for Teens
Best Fantasy Movies
Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.See how we rate