Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo | Book Review

“Not every flower belongs in every garden.”

I read, ‘Ninth House,’ by Leigh Bardugo in the course of 24-hours. It was literally so good that I was unable to put it down. Standing alongside Erin Morgenstern, Leigh Bardugo is quickly becoming my new favorite author. I just received, ‘The Six of Crows Duology,’ as a birthday gift, and I cannot wait to delve in.

The Plot

The mesmerizing adult debut from Leigh Bardugo, a tale of power, privilege, dark magic, and murder set among the Ivy League elite.

Galaxy “Alex” Stern is the most unlikely member of Yale’s freshman class. Raised in the Los Angeles hinterlands by a hippie mom, Alex dropped out of school early and into a world of shady drug-dealer boyfriends, dead-end jobs, and much, much worse. In fact, by age twenty, she is the sole survivor of a horrific, unsolved multiple homicide. Some might say she’s thrown her life away. But at her hospital bed, Alex is offered a second chance: to attend one of the world’s most prestigious universities on a full ride. What’s the catch, and why her?

Still searching for answers, Alex arrives in New Haven tasked by her mysterious benefactors with monitoring the activities of Yale’s secret societies. Their eight windowless “tombs” are the well-known haunts of the rich and powerful, from high-ranking politicos to Wall Street’s biggest players. But their occult activities are more sinister and more extraordinary than any paranoid imagination might conceive. They tamper with forbidden magic. They raise the dead. And, sometimes, they prey on the living.


‘Ninth House,’ is a masterpiece. It was so much more than I hoped for or expected. It’s full of magic and mystery and intrigue. It’s an intellectual read (I must admit that I had to consult Google Translator and look up quite a few words for their definition) and full of suspense. I loved how secret societies were the basis of the book and how the darkness of the human soul is portrayed. Power, wealth, murder, magic, madness, and mystery are all the collective pieces of this brilliant work. I was also excited to learn that this book is the first in a series – which is a good thing as I found myself hungry for more. In fact, when the book ended, I found myself saying, “No, no, no. This can’t be the end.” Luckily, the sequel is slated for 2021 (I think).

Favorite Excerpts

  • “Mors irrumat omnia. Death fucks us all.”
  • “I want to survive this world that keeps trying to destroy me.”
  • “And maybe he wanted her to be the kind of girl who dressed as Queen Mab, who loved words and had stars in her blood.”
  • “That was what magic did. It revealed the heart of who you’d been before life took away your belief in the possible. It gave back the world all lonely children longed for.”


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