REVIEW: A Darker Shade of Magic - V.E. Schwab

A Darker Shade of Magic - V.E. Schwab 
"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.
" - Goodreads

First thing's first, I literally only picked this book up because of the hype. I read the synopsis a while ago, and thought nah, that doesn't sound like my kind of thing... but once again, I was wrong. I'm wrong a lot when it comes to judging books that I may or may not want to read. I should be less fussy. Anyway, enough of that. I really enjoyed this book! I was a bit sceptical at first, a little bit confused too with all the different London's and colours and I had no idea where he was and which London was which but it's actually pretty simple to understand and it was all cleared up pretty quickly! I wouldn't say that this was my favourite book, but I did enjoy it enough to want to pick up the sequel as soon as I'm done writing this! 
I really liked Kell as a character, he wasn't portrayed to be perfect with no flaws, or the 'hunk' of the book. He was pure, he cared about his friends and wanted to do what was right and I just loved that. 

Another thing I really loved was the romance. Or lack of. I'm so so happy that there was no romance in this book. You have no idea how refreshing it is to read a well-written, action-packed book with no romance. The plot was strong enough in itself that it didn't need the two main characters to fall in love and I'm ecstatic that it didn't happen. Although if it doesn't happen in Book 2 I'm going to be mad. 

The lack of romance leads me on to our female main character, Lila. Lila is the kind of person I would want to be if I were a character in a book. She's beautiful, she's strong, she's determined, she's smart, she's witty and sarcastic. If there's a set of traits I would love to have, it's those right there. I thought it was so funny that she wanted to go along with him just for the shits and giggles, as if it was a normal road trip! 
Image found @ veschwab.tumblr.com

There were times where I thought the book dragged a little bit, the writing was at times too much (if that makes sense?!) and I did get a little bored reading through the paragraphs and paragraphs of description. I hate reading description, I like to read a few lines and then I just make up the rest of it by myself. The author could write, "She flicked her blonde hair" and I will still forever imagine her to have brown hair, so I do tend to skip description of settings and people if there's too much (shhh!) 

I'm intrigued to see what other adventures Schwab has in store for us, but I'm sure I'll find out soon as I'm off to start A Gathering of Shadows right now!

What did you think of the first Shades of Magic novel? 

1 comment:

  1. I totally agree with you! I adored Lila, but I did get a bit bored in places. The world building dragged for me, but once we got into the action, I was loving it! The setting was beautiful, and the ideas are so imaginative and original, so I hope to pick up the next book soon! :D

    Denise | The Bibliolater