Ninth House

Leight Bardugo

Fiction 2019/ 455 page

Galaxy (Alex) Stern has seen Grays all of her life.  "Grays" is a Yale Lethe term for ghosts.  Alex enters Yale, and, in her first year, she becomes "Dante " ... the young novice who will eventually rise to a place of greater power by her senior year ... invited into Yale's secret societies by her extraordinary talent..

The story is intriguing.  You learn about the secret societies of Yale who perform magic, connect with beings behind the Veil, sometimes make sacrifices, and maintain the long history of these nine underground "fraternities" that all lay claim to some of the most recognizable, professional, and successful business and political leaders (mostly men) in our society since the mid-1800k.

The first two-thirds of this adult fantasy novel quite captured my interest.  it was intriguing to learn how the House of Lethe worked and interacted.  I was quite pleased to witness the suppport and friendship among Yale faculty, staff, and students who are a part of Lethe.  And the magic is delightful!

Long about page 300, Bardugo's first novel in adult fantasy, turns violent.  I began to like it less then, though it certainly shifts when Alex befriends The Bridegroom, who is dead, lives on the other side of the Veil, and who saves Alex a number of times from black magic and angry Grays.

I liked this book quite a bit, though I don't know that affinity will take me far into reading the second and third novels in the trilogy.  The end of this first book did not leave me hanging and compelled to read more. I think Ninth House will intrigue you if you like Yale, or magic, suspense, and intrigue.

December 2023