Review: Dark Shores (Dark Shores #1)

Title: Dark Shores (Dark Shores #1)
Author: Danielle L. Jensen
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy
Publisher: Tor Teen
Source: Indigo Spring Preview 2019
Format: Paperback
Release Date: May 7, 2019
Rating: ★★★★


Goodreads Synopsis:

High seas adventure, blackmail, and meddling gods meet in Dark Shores, a thrilling first novel in a fast-paced new YA fantasy series by USA Today bestselling author Danielle L. Jensen.

In a world divided by meddlesome gods and treacherous oceans, only the Maarin possess the knowledge to cross the Endless Seas. But they have one mandate: East must never meet West.


Teriana is the second mate of the Quincense and heir to the Maarin Triumvirate. Her people are born of the seas and the keepers of its secrets, but when her closest friend is forced into an unwanted betrothal, Teriana breaks her people’s mandate so her friend might escape—a choice with devastating consequences. 


Marcus is the commander of the Thirty-Seventh, the notorious legion that has led the Celendor Empire to conquer the entire East. The legion is his family, but even they don’t know the truth he’s been hiding since childhood. It’s a secret he’ll do anything to protect, no matter how much it costs him – and the world. 


When an Empire senator discovers the existence of the Dark Shores, he captures Teriana’s crew and threatens to reveal Marcus’s secret unless they sail in pursuit of conquest, forcing the two into an unlikely—and unwilling—alliance. They unite for the sake of their families, but both must decide how far they are willing to go, and how much they are willing to sacrifice.


Teriana is the daughter of the captain of an important ship belonging to the Maarins. She gave away secrets on how to communicate with the Maarin gods to her friend, when her friend’s life was threatened. When her friend gives away the secret, that there is another land across the sea called the Dark Shores, the Maarin way of life is threatened. Teriana is captured and forced to show Marcus, a soldier, the way to the Dark Shores.

Pirate stories are really popular right now in YA fiction, but this is the first one I’ve read. I really liked the action in this story. There were some battles, but the descriptions were brief so they didn’t get complicated. There was the added complication of the gods, who could affect things in their world.

Since Marcus was from the Celendor Empire, he didn’t know as much about Teriana’s way of living, and he knew nothing of the Dark Shores. We got to learn about the world along with him.

Teriana was a bit of an unreliable character, which made the story exciting. She would tell people the wrong thing, and betray the ones closest to her. Usually I don’t like characters who are untrustworthy and unreliable, but Teriana was unpredictable and kept up the tension of the story.

I really enjoyed this story! I’m excited for the next books.

Thank you Indigo Teen for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

Dark Skies (Dark Shores #2) by Danielle L. Jensen

Daughter of a Pirate King (Daughter of a Pirate King #1) by Tricia Levenseller

Other Books in the Series:

  • Dark Skies

Have you read Dark Shores? What did you think of it?


Author: jilljemmett

Jill lives in Toronto, Canada. She has studied English, Creative Writing, and Publishing. Jill is the creator and content producer of Jill’s Book Blog, where she has published a blog post every day for the last four years, including 5-7 book reviews a week. She can usually be found with her nose in a book.

2 thoughts on “Review: Dark Shores (Dark Shores #1)”

  1. Glad you enjoyed Dark Shores! Things get even better/sadder in Dark Skies. Jensen really ups the tension. I need to read Daughter of the Pirate King too!


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