Monday, 10 August 2015

Review: A Darker Shade of Magic

A Darker Shade of Magic

by V. E. Schwab

Pages: 484, paperback

Publisher: Titan Books

Date Released: 24th February, 2015

Source: own


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.

This book is made of magic. That's all I can say to describe it. Pure, unfiltered magic.
Kell is one of the last of his kind, an Antari, who can travel between the doors of the four dimensions of London. There is Red London, where magic thrives; Grey London, which is our London, where magic is non-existant; White London where the magic is slowly being sapped, and slowly sapping the people in it; and finally, Black London, which was destroyed by the corruption of magic.
This world-building alone makes it a brilliant, fascinating read.

Even Luna loved this book
The characters are compelling: Kell with his many sided coat, who smuggles in contraband between the worlds. Then there is Delilah Bard, aspiring pirate from the Grey world. She was an absolute favourite: she took no shit from anyone, and was willing to be killed if it meant the good of a world she doesn't even call home. She's one of the strongest characters (not just a strong female) I've come across in literature this year, and I aspire to be like her in so many ways.

The writing was absolutely gorgeous, and I was left rereading passages over and over again, sighing in adoration. Schwab has a poetic flare to her work, and it makes me yearn to read more of her work. So far I've only read her superhero novel, Vicious, and I also highly recommend it.

I loved every moment of this book, and as soon as I finished it, I wanted to go back to the beginning. I absolutely can't wait to read the next book in the series and see what shenanigans Kell and Lila get up to.

A Darker Shade of Magic managed to worm its way into my favourites shelf. It's a read I highly recommend.

Cover: 4
Plot: 5
Characters: 5
Writing: 5
Interest: 5

1 comment:

  1. I've heard such great things about this book, I'm glad you enjoyed it :) I love with with lots and magic and a strong MC sounds perfect!
    Great review,
    Your new GFC Follower,
    Cody @ Literary-ly Obsessed