Oh my. Where to begin?
Well, maybe I’ll start with a little confession. I absolutely loved this book. But that is not how my relationship with this book began. When I read the synopsis of this book I thought that it ticked every single box that I’d ever put out there when looking for something new to read. It intrigued me. Anyone who knows me will tell you that I love fantasy, I love fantasy especially when it’s teamed with magic, I love this combination even more when it is set in a City that you love in reality and more so when you are introduced to a kick ass chick and a dreamy mysterious Antari.
Now, explain to me then why it took me so so long to get into?
Please don’t mistake me when I say this and think that I slogged along all the way to the bitter end. I do do that, there is no doubt but I actually PUT DOWN this book and replaced it with different reads so many times. 15% in. 23% in. 31% in.
I actually thought I would never get through it. I still don’t know why this happened. Obviously some mysterious force took hold of me and refused to let go.
Then, one fateful day, I just couldn’t decide on what to pick from my TBRs and I just sort found myself settling back down to A Darker Shade of Magic again and with a sigh I continued.
All of a sudden it just clicked into place.
V.E.Schwab is officially a genius in my eyes and I’d like to apologise to her that I didn’t get it at first and put this book down so many times. This book was absolutely Awesome. I want to just go straight back and read it but my TBR would never forgive me. I bought the follow up A Gathering of Shadows when I was 10% from the end. That’s how awesome I thought it was.
Lila, who sort of appears from no where and took me completely by surprise. She’s sassy and tough and emotional and a completely brilliant example of a female character. I long to see these sorts of characters, usually I feel completely disappointed by the representation of females in literature you usually very two examples 1) the weakling who relies on someone else (usually a male character) to protect them or decide things for them or 2) The hard ass bitch who ‘can take care of herself’ and usually never shows any type of emotion whatsoever. Lila was so pure but so tough at the same time. She shows that she can take care of herself, especially when you first meet her, but she also shows a side of her that really gets affected by things emotionally. I just loved the portrayal of her. I could read her again and again.
Kell, a brother of the Prince of Red London, and is so incredibly easy to fall for. As an Antari, Kell is able to travel magically from London to London to London taking messages and getting himself in all sorts of trouble.
The Dane Twins. In a really twisted way I absolutely loved these two- I’m not sure what it was about them specifically but I really did. I suppose that says more about me than anything else.
So many books have let me down on the whole ‘world building’ aspect- so many books that I had high hopes for exploring the land that they had created. It almost always ends in disappointment for me but this book!! I realise that there were 4 Londons and so in that sense people might think it’s kind of a cop out but each London I thought was so unique but at the same time so familiar. Usually in world building I like a bit of poetic language; not sure why, maybe my mind just works that way but the building of this world (or these worlds I should say) I think was done with much simpler language but it just worked so well and I could picture myself there. In any of the worlds.
Let me know if you have read this ,what you thought and if you’ve picked up A Gathering of Shadows yet.