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Red House Books is going through a bit of a update!

I've always had a pretty clear vision of what I wanted this space to be but I've been detoured from my path by...lots and lost of other people's opinions and ways of doing things...

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Monday, May 2, 2016

Book Review: A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab

Book #1 of Shades of Magic
Genre: Adult Fantasy
Publication: February 2015 by Tor Books
Acquisition: bought

Kell is one of the last Antari, a rare magician who can travel between parallel worlds: hopping from Grey London — dirty, boring, lacking magic, and ruled by mad King George — to Red London — where life and magic are revered, and the Maresh Dynasty presides over a flourishing empire — to White London — ruled by whoever has murdered their way to the throne, where people fight to control magic, and the magic fights back — and back, but never Black London, because traveling to Black London is forbidden and no one speaks of it now.

Officially, Kell is the personal ambassador and adopted Prince of Red London, carrying the monthly correspondences between the royals of each London. Unofficially, Kell smuggles for those willing to pay for even a glimpse of a world they’ll never see, and it is this dangerous hobby that 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 take her with him for her proper adventure.

But perilous magic is afoot, and treachery lurks at every turn. To save both his London and the others, Kell and Lila will first need to stay alive — a feat trickier than they hoped.
(from Goodreads)
5 / 5 Stars

It's been a very long time since I've read a book that I've loved as much as I love this book.

It's good.

Seriously good.

Fabulously, tremendously good.

Schwab knows how to tell a story. I mean, I knew that already. But OMG was I blown away by A Darker Shade of Magic.

Every character, every setting, every little detail, every big detail - EVERYTHING was perfect.

I grew up with fantasy. Sweeping, epic fantasy stories passed down to me by my parents. ADSOM 100% reminds me of these stories I read and loved when I was younger.

Complete and full and timeless.

I sometimes have a hard time putting myself in a different worlds within the same story but that didn't happen here. Gray, Red, White, Black - it was all so easy to envision.

And man, did I wish I could visit Red London. It's got magic, and Kell and secrets and Kell and mystery and did I mention Kell lives there?

Since finishing ADSOM (oh, and a big thank you to whoever popularized this acronym - makes it so much easier to gush over talk about via Twitter and the like ;)

What was I saying? Oh yes - since finishing ADSOM I've been recommending it to just about everyone. Friends, family, strangers - no one is safe from my tremendous love for this book!!

So, have you read it yet? ;)

(btw - book 2? Also ridiculously fabulous!)


  1. I just read Schwab's This Savage Song, which was AMAZING and I'm now convinced that I have to read all her other books! This one is high on my list!!

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

  2. I have got to read A Darker Shade of Magic. Magical London books are irresistible to me!


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