A Darker Shade of Magic
By VE Schwab (AKA Victoria Schwab)
Release Date: 2/24/15
Published by Tor Books
Genre(s): Magic, Fantasy, Adventure
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MY RATING: 5 Stars
DESCRIPTION IN 6 WORDS
Adventure, Magic, Parallel Universes, Action, Villian
Kell is one of the last Travelers—rare magicians who choose a parallel universe to visit. Grey London is dirty, boring, lacks magic, ruled by mad King George. Red London is where life and magic are revered, and the Maresh Dynasty presides over a flourishing empire. White London is ruled by whoever has murdered their way to the throne. People fight to control magic, and the magic fights back, draining the city to its very bones. Once there was Black London—but no one speaks of that now. Officially, Kell is the Red Traveler, personal ambassador and adopted Prince of Red London, carrying the monthly correspondences between royals of each London. Unofficially, Kell smuggles for those willing to pay for even a glimpse of a world they’ll never see. This dangerous hobby sets him up for accidental treason. Fleeing into Grey London, Kell runs afoul of Delilah Bard, a cut-purse with lofty aspirations. She robs him, saves him from a dangerous enemy, then forces him to another world for her ‘proper adventure’. But perilous magic is afoot, and treachery lurks at every turn. To save all of the worlds, Kell and Lila will first need to stay alive—trickier than they hoped.
I have absolutely nothing negative to say about ADSOM because it was just that fantastic. When I first got ADSOM I was hesitant to read it, not because I hadn’t heard anything but good from it but because from what I could tell, there wasn’t any romance. Now wait…before you jump down my throat, I will have you know I LOVE ROMANCE. Romance is what I love in a lot of YA books. But what was so great about ADSOM was that though romance wasn’t a main factor in the story, VE did such an excellent job at telling an even better story that I didn’t give a crud whether or not their was romance.
VE’s world building in ADSOM was fantastic as well. I was utterly amazed at how creative and wonderfully magical it was. The idea of there being four London’s with a different tone set in each one was such a cool idea it really just sucked me in to the story as a whole. I read ADSOM over the summer and it was done in a day. I finally knew why everyone on Twitter couldn’t shut up about this book. I am extremely excited to see more of the world of ADSOM in A Gathering of Shadows and I cannot wait even more to dive into VE’s other books, Vicious and The Archived Series!
On a final note, one of my favorite parts of this book was just the characters. The characters were so real and life like. I felt like I knew them. Kell is a unique type of magician with such a snazzy yet smart personality. Everything about him is lovable! Now on to Delilah Bard. She is awesome. Like seriously, everything about Lila is awesome. She’s badass, smart and charming in a girlish yet rough way. One of my favorite things about Lila though is her extreme need for adventure. Lila wants to sail and travel the world and I found that that is something that is such a wonderful character trait. It really inspired me to want to see some more of the world myself.
This review is short because I just need to say that ADSOM was too amazing to put too many words into it. Please read it, because I assure you, it’s just so amazing! I loved it so much and I really hope you will too.