Book Review: “Ninth House” by Leigh Bardugo

I read this entire book in a day, and I absolutely love it when books are just that fascinating enough to me nowadays. (Well, I guess it didn’t help that I borrowed it from the library, forgot about it, and got an email saying my library hold was up in three days — whoops.)

I… I really don’t know how to describe this book. It definitely falls into the Dark Academia genre (which I have become absolutely enamored with this past year), and it teases everything out just enough that it kept me guessing the entire time. I guess I could have also sped through this book faster than I should have to catch all the foreshadowing, but in the end, I don’t think it really mattered. I knew something was wrong when nobody could raise the dead girl’s ghost, but I was not expecting the conclusion that it all wrapped around to.

What’s nice is that, even though this is the first book in a series (which I didn’t know until I checked the book out and found that the full title includes Alex Stern #1 on it), it can be read by itself and you can leave it where it is, with everything wrapped up neatly and think that your journey is over. Sure, there are one or two mysteries left at the end, but they can be ignored if you don’t want to go any further into this world.

But I can’t wait to go further into this world. I read the eBook, but if you’ve got a physical copy I’m sure you’ll be making use of the list of Lethe societies and what each of them specialize in, because there were points where I got very confused and I had to wait for Alex and friends to explain what each thing meant. I feel like this is one of those books that I’m going to have to buy a copy of (when I get the shelf space for it), just so I can read it over and over again. Since I know the ending now, I can look for all of those little strings that were placed earlier in the book. They have to exist, right?

I don’t know how much of this book I can actually discuss without spoiling literally everything, but let’s just go with the basics: a girl who doesn’t fit in (and who was given a second chance at life) discovers that something super fishy is going on in the already-seedy underbelly of the Yale secret societies, and she is the only one who can do anything about it, since her mentor mysteriously disappeared months ago. She learns to trust others (and not to trust others), and wraps everything up almost neatly with a bow at the end, although there are a few things that seem to come out of left field that it took me a couple of re-readings of passages to understand. If you’re a fan of dark academia, mysteries, and secret societies, this is absolutely the book for you.

I’m going to give this one 5/5 stars, and I can’t wait for the sequel.

What did you think of Ninth House? I still can’t really make heads or tails of it, but I know I loved it! Let me know in the comments!

And as always, keep reading.

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