A Gathering of Shadows (Shades of Magic, #2)
It has been four months since a mysterious obsidian stone fell into Kell's possession. Four months since his path crossed with Delilah Bard. Four months since Prince Rhy was wounded, and since the nefarious Dane twins of White London fell, and four months since the stone was cast with Holland's dying body through the rift--back into Black London.Now, restless after having given up his smuggling habit, Kell is visited by dreams of ominous magical events, waking only to think of Lila, who disappeared from the docks as she always meant to do. As Red London finalizes preparations for the Element Games--an extravagant international competition of magic meant to entertain and keep healthy the ties between neighboring countries--a certain pirate ship draws closer, carrying old friends back into port.And while Red London is caught up in the pageantry and thrills of the Games, another London is coming back to life. After all, a shadow that was gone in the night will reappear in the morning. But the balance of magic is ever perilous, and for one city to flourish, another London must fall.

A Gathering of Shadows (Shades of Magic, #2) Details

TitleA Gathering of Shadows (Shades of Magic, #2)
Author
FormatHardcover
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseFeb 23rd, 2016
PublisherTor Books
ISBN0765376474
ISBN-139780765376473
Number of pages512 pages
Rating
GenreFantasy, Magic, Young Adult, Fiction

A Gathering of Shadows (Shades of Magic, #2) Review

  • Emily May
    May 5, 2015
    Delilah Bard had a way of finding trouble. I just love everything about this world. Read it in a single day and I cannot wait for the next book.I think I'm a bit of an unintentionally picky reader when it comes to fantasy. A lot of YA fantasy is heavy on the romance and low on the substance, which irks me, but I don't take much pleasure in overlong, dense, wordy adult fantasy series either. I want exciting world-building, strong characters and good pacing that doesn't sacrifice depth. And I fee Delilah Bard had a way of finding trouble. I just love everything about this world. Read it in a single day and I cannot wait for the next book.I think I'm a bit of an unintentionally picky reader when it comes to fantasy. A lot of YA fantasy is heavy on the romance and low on the substance, which irks me, but I don't take much pleasure in overlong, dense, wordy adult fantasy series either. I want exciting world-building, strong characters and good pacing that doesn't sacrifice depth. And I feel like Schwab totally gets that.The writing style is detailed and evocative - you can picture this world so easily, even though it is highly sensational, and you can feel the magic running through it. Schwab crafts scenes with both description and tension, firmly cementing her as one of my favourite fantasy authors.It is a world for those who admire imagination. Alternate Londons, some with magic and some without, magic wielders, evil rulers, pirates and - in this installment - a magical tournament called the Essen Tasch. The author uses this tournament to draw the characters together, to create action and excitement, whilst behind it all there looms a dark threat.With rich, evocative storytelling, an original, fantastically-conceived fantasy world, and colourful, weird characters, it's hard to complain. The book buzzes with magical secrets and new discoveries; like an adult version of Narnia, it is a way of walking through the wardrobe and facing all the wonderful and horrifying possibilities.I enjoyed Kell's new experiences, as he comes to term with the lasting effects of what happened in the last book. I enjoyed all the backstabbing, cross-dressing and thievery. But, most of all, I just freaking love Lila. She is the baddest badass of them all and she doesn't give a shit.A Gathering of Shadows goes deeper, drawing us further into this world and developing all the characters. It ends with a promise of more horror and action in the next book. I can't wait. After all, you can kill people, but you cannot kill magic.Not truly. Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Youtube | Store
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  • Victoria Schwab
    April 25, 2015
    “I know where you sleep, Bard.”She smirked. “Then you know I sleep with knives.”*It's hard to believe that A GATHERING OF SHADOWS comes out in less than three months!!!
  • Kat O'Keeffe
    April 21, 2015
    I love these covers so much it hurts. Also the wait for this book hurts. AND THAT SYNOPSIS. Oh man. That hurts too (but in a good way).Basically everything hurts and nothing will be good again until I have this in my hands.*enters hibernation mode until February 2016**just kidding there are other books I have to read in the meantime**but seriously I really really want this one*
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  • Jessica ❁ ➳ Silverbow ➳ ❁ Rabid Reads
    March 5, 2015
    Reviewed by: Rabid Reads4.5 starsAuthors of series like to do this thing where they give you a first installment that while, of course, leaving unanswered questions, still manages to conclude nice and neatly.You can't wait to get your hands on the next book, but only b/c you love the story and are desperate to see what happens next. You feel safe when you finally get the next chapter. The tension that plagued you while reading the prior installment, coming ever closer as you neared the end, like Reviewed by: Rabid Reads4.5 starsAuthors of series like to do this thing where they give you a first installment that while, of course, leaving unanswered questions, still manages to conclude nice and neatly.You can't wait to get your hands on the next book, but only b/c you love the story and are desperate to see what happens next. You feel safe when you finally get the next chapter. The tension that plagued you while reading the prior installment, coming ever closer as you neared the end, like footsteps speeding up behind you, making you curse your stupidity for taking a walk alone at night in an unfamiliar city . . . That tension isn't there.You've developed a trust, a camaraderie . . . an understanding with the author.You have been duly warned.When we last left Lila and Kell, they were parting ways. We were sad, but we expected no less. After all: “I’m not going to die,” she said. “Not till I’ve seen it.”“Seen what?”Her smile widened. “Everything.” Kell can't go with her. He has responsibilities . . . PLUS, you know, there's that thing that happened, that thing that tied him even closer to the royal family . . . The royal family he's meant to be part of . . . The royal family that instead treats him like a commodity . . . Lemme tell you, people---it gets WORSE.Lila, on the other hand, is having the adventure she's always dreamed of. On a PIRATE ship. *coughs* I mean, privateer ship. She got her position by killing another crew member. *shakes head at Lila* Buuuuut it turned out they didn't like the fellow much anyway, so it all worked out. A little too well, actually. Lila develops a sort-of friendship with the captain. She earns the respect of the crew. Worse, she begins to feel like she herself is a true part of the crew.Can't have that. So when Captain announces his intent to return to Red London and participate in a prestigious wizards' tournament, Lila decides that she won't be going with them when next they leave.And she doesn't. But not for the reasons she anticipated. You: WHAT DOES THAT MEAN?!Me: And that's just the tip of the iceberg. Things happened in A DARKER SHADE OF MAGIC, and those things have CONSEQUENCES. CONSEQUENCES that you will not believe until you see them for yourself. What does it mean that Kell's life is now tied to another's? What will happen now that a living being from Grey London has permanently crossed over into Red London? And what would you say if I told you that you only think you've seen chaos in White London?Last year, A DARKER SHADE OF MAGIC made my Best Books of 2015 list. This year, A GATHERING OF SHADOWS is already a strong contender for the #1 spot. If you have yet to check out Schwab for yourself, what are you waiting for? The woman is GENIUS. This world and the characters that populate it, is one of the most unique I've encountered in ages. I love it. Even as I'm screaming at Lila to THINK before she acts, for once. Even as my heart is breaking for Kell b/c he can longer ignore the charade of his circumstances. Even as all the Londons hover on the edge of DOOM . . . I love it. Highly recommended.
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  • Ben Alderson
    February 17, 2016
    THIS SERIES IS EVERYTHING TO ME..THIS SEQUEL WAS AMAZINGELEMENTAL CONTROL..YES..YES..GIVE ME MOREMOREI SAIDmorePLEASEI'm cryingi need the next book..omg
  • Hannah
    January 27, 2017
    My spoiler discussion is now up on my channel!: https://youtu.be/jTE6aTbosjUTHAT ENDING DESTROYED ME SOMEONE GIVE ME THE NEXT BOOK RIGHT NOW
  • karen
    July 5, 2016
    congratulations! semifinalist in goodreads' best fantasy category 2016!Lila shrugged. "Everyone's immortal until they're not."this is one of those crossover dealies that isn't marketed (or priced, unfortunately) as YA, but there's no reason for it not to be in the YA section, from a reader perspective. from the publisher's perspective, obviously it's always better when you can set your cover price in the ten bucks higher adult-market range, but since this is such a pretty book, i'm okay with tha congratulations! semifinalist in goodreads' best fantasy category 2016!Lila shrugged. "Everyone's immortal until they're not."this is one of those crossover dealies that isn't marketed (or priced, unfortunately) as YA, but there's no reason for it not to be in the YA section, from a reader perspective. from the publisher's perspective, obviously it's always better when you can set your cover price in the ten bucks higher adult-market range, but since this is such a pretty book, i'm okay with that THIS TIME, even though it's such a fast read, you'll tear through it like you're at a cookie party. (please invite me to cookie parties) i was not crazy about the first book in this trilogy. it was fine - i liked the world in which it was set, and i loved the character of lila, but it seemed to be doing a lot of buildup and stage-setting without delivering much actiony payoff. however, when i read the synopsis of this one, promising an international magic-based tournament, i thought, "oh, yes - that will have some action for sure!" and it's great - it starts off great and it continues to be great the whole way through. need more details than me mumbling "great" through a mouthful of cookies? fine.this one makes with the action right away, in an opening scene revealing lila in a perilous situation, and loving every minute of it. kell was the primary focus in the first book, but here, lila has sidled her scrawny ass into the limelight and she's not giving it up for anything. kell and rhy will get their POV-time, but lila steals the show, as well as everything else that isn't nailed down. there's just something about her i love. sure, she's the archetypal badass chick whose hardscrabble background has taught her that no one's coming to her rescue, emotions are liabilities, and knives are wonderfully persuasive, which tough-girl attitude should be totally cheesy:Tieran fixed her with his gaze. "Has anyone ever told you that you're too sharp for your own good?""Too sharp. Too loud. Too reckless. I've heard it all. It's a wonder I'm still alive."but for some reason, i just adore her. with her wolfish smile and her terrible decisions and her knack for getting into and out of danger, everything she's done to leave behind her unsatisfyingly grey life and launch herself into a world of magic and adventure - she's neither infallible nor completely guarded, and there's a perfect balance to her character - she's able to walk away from someone without looking back, but she'll still daydream a little.and she gives herself awesome daenerys-caliber pep talks: Dangerous.Reckless.Foolish.Mad.A chorus of doubt so loud her boots took a step back of their own accord.In one of the other stadiums, the crowds cheered as an Arnesian emerged victorious.Lila retreated another step.And then she caught sight of the flag - her flag - in the stands, and her steps ground to a halt.I am Delilah Bard, she thought. Pirate, thief, magician.Her fingertips began to thrum.I have crossed worlds and taken ships. Fought queens and saved cities.Her bones shuddered and her blood raced.I am one of a kind. she definitely is one of a kind (view spoiler)[ and i really hope she's not antari, missing eye or no, because i want her identity, her abilities, to be singular; something hers and hers alone, not part of a tradition or tribe. she's a monolith, not a link in some chain. (hide spoiler)]lila aside, there are excellent developments in the rest of the world. that thing kell did in the last book for rhy has consequences both physical and psychological, and has caused a great deal of tension in his relationship with the king and queen. kell spends a lot of this book moping around in a daze of "why are 'mommy' and 'daddy' so mad at me and will i ever see lila again and woe woe woe," until rhy comes up with a wonderful diversion for him, to take his mind off of his emo crap and also relieve a lot of pent-up aggression. (and please tell me there is rhy/kell fanfic out there, because there needs to be, right?)we also get a better, more focused view of the politics of red london this time around. in the first book, we were bouncing around between the various londons and learning about their relationships with each other, but here we get a more detailed look at red london - its history and the rivalries between the different cultures and lands making up the kingdom, and the intricacies of its power structure, which playboy rhy will one day have to navigate"Ruling is a delicate affair," his father had chided. "Every gesture carries purpose and meaning. This tournament is not only a game. It helps to maintain peace with our neighboring empires, and it allows us to show them our resources without implying any threat. The king had laced his fingers. "Politics is a dance until the moment it becomes a war. And we control the music."the tournament itself is fun, but lower-stakes than i had anticipated. this isn't The Hunger Games or Battle Royale; it's more diplomatic; it's entertainment, and the participants are carefully selected and matched to deliver a good show without killing anyone, like a magical pageant designed by jane austen. however, that careful plan has had a monkeywrench thrown in by a couple of dark horses. and kidnapping. there's always gotta be some kidnapping.we get a new character in alucard, who - despite that stupid gothy name, is very likable. not so much to kell - there's some history there, but to me. and to lila.oh, and what will become of lila and kell?? will there be unbearable tension?? will every time they say "hello" read like barely-restrained pornography, like in those very rare moments when felicity lets down her emotional guard on The Americans and a touch of the hand comes across as unspeakably intimate? will lila finally find a dress to wear?"What's wrong with black? It's the perfect color.""For hiding. For blending into shadows. For storming castles. Not for balls. I let you go to the last one in black, and it has bothered me all winter.""If that's true, you don't have enough things to worry about."Calla tsked and turned toward the collection of dresses. Lila's gaze raked over them, and she cringed at a yolk-yellow skirt, a velvety purple sleeve. They looked like pieces of ripe fruit, like decadent desserts. Lila wanted to look powerful, not edible. woe to the person who tries. this is a girl with many knives strapped on under her gowns.while all this is taking place in red london, we get some hints of what's been happening in white london since the events of the last book. trouble is a-brewing. this book ends on a corker of a cliffhanger, and i'm so glad i kept on with this series, because i am eager to see what happens in book three. bring it on!***************************************this one is SO MUCH better than the first book. what a relief! thanks for making me stick with it, machalo buddies!
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  • Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘ (of badger and SNAKE)
    November 22, 2015
    *laughs hysterically* *choking sound*Why, thank you, Victoria Schwab. Please don't mind my heart. No, really. Feel free to crush it. I don't do holding grudges. Much. 4.5 stars . Truth is, when I started A Gathering of Shadows, one of my best friend asked me if I thought she would like, and strangely, I wasn't able to answer straight away. Color me surprised. How comes this series holds such a strong grip on me and still I am hesitating when recommending it? I understood, then. These books? They *laughs hysterically* *choking sound*Why, thank you, Victoria Schwab. Please don't mind my heart. No, really. Feel free to crush it. I don't do holding grudges. Much. 4.5 stars . Truth is, when I started A Gathering of Shadows, one of my best friend asked me if I thought she would like, and strangely, I wasn't able to answer straight away. Color me surprised. How comes this series holds such a strong grip on me and still I am hesitating when recommending it? I understood, then. These books? They sneak up on you. There's honestly not that much action in the first halves of BOTH of them and yet you're never bored. You're enchanted, mesmerized like a child reading HP for the first time (YES, I'M GOING THERE), your eyes widening at the sight of this wondrous, original world served by its fascinating and real characters for whom you can't help but care deeply, including : ✔ a kickass thief who's giving strong female-lead a new name (that's Lila, by the way) : Remember my complaints about Feyre in A Court of Thorns and Roses? I expressed how tired I was of the beloved (GAG) pattern implying that the only reason women fought was for their families, as if women couldn't, for the life of them, be badass for the thrill of it. Lila made a liar of me. Thank you, Lila. "Delilah Bard had a way of finding trouble. She'd always thought it was better than letting trouble find her, but floating in the ocean in a two-person skiff with no oars, no view of land, and no real resources save the ropes binding her wrists, she was beginning to reconsider." ✔ a loyal magician whose doubts and outbursts make you want to both smack and hug him (but mostly, hugs). Eaten by guilt, confused by his sudden thrives for darkness (am I bad to love that part?), in need to adapt to his bond with his brother, so freaking alone and caged, Kell stays one of my favorite characters because he's flawed and brave and endearing and oh, yes, often wrong. (MY FROWNING BOY!) (in redheads I trust) (←how could I NOT love him now tell me?) "You could at least pretend to be grateful.""And you couldn't have picked something a little more...I don't know...imposing?""...A bloody handprint?" retorted Rhy. "Oh, what about a glowing black eye?"Kell glowered."You're right," continued Rhy, "I should have just drawn a frowning face. But then everyone would know it's you." ✔ a deceptive Captain who may or may not be a pirate (how's this for awesome?). Okay, okay, I have to admit that he made me narrow my eyes several times at first. What? I come from a loyal bunch (frowning boy, remember?). But in the end, his character added so much wit and fun to the story that he won me. Also, that development? YES YES YES. "Alucard had shaken his head, exasperated. "The accent of a royal and the sensibilities of a thief." But Lila had only smiled. She'd said something very similar once, to Kell. Before she knew he was a royal. And a thief, for that matter." ✔ a lost prince who's endlessly trying to keep darkness at bay : Oh Rhy, Rhy, Rhy. I cannot say that I always agreed with his choices, but the complicity between him and Kell - the loyalty - prevents me for holding any grudge (if I was into grudges, that is) "There was a new restlessness to his motions, a taut energy that mirrored Kell's. And yet, Rhy's was different. Manic. Dangerous. His moods were darker and their turn sharper, cutting the span of a second." ✔ ... Oh, and those assholes (you know who I mean) (there're plenty to choose really) As for the plot, although I was more than excited to come back into this world, and that Kell and Lila own a special place in my heart, I have to admit that I spent the beginning feeling restless because I longed for them to be together - not necessarily romantically (WHO AM I KIDDING) (THE CHEMISTRY!! GAH!), but really, their interactions? They're the best, and they both balance each other's perfectly. Separated, they lose a little bit of their charm in my opinion. But. Now that I finished the book, I understand why Victoria Schwab made this choice and the last 40%? Brilliant, exhilarating, and as far as I'm concerned, PERFECTION. There's something to say about a fantasy plot that stays unpredictable, because trust me, when you read a lot of fantasy, it becomes rarer and rarer. This is why I'm rounding up my rating. ▶ Give me thrill, give me peril, give me gasps, and I'm the happiest reader of the world.My heart, though. For more of my reviews, please visit:
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  • Saania Zee Jamal ϟ
    February 26, 2017
    I SALUTE ANYONE THAT HAD TO LIVE MORE THAN AN ENTIRE YEAR DANGLING OFF THAT BRUTAL CLIFFHANGER OH MY HOLY FUCKRemember when I called A Darker Shade of Magic a slow-burner? HA. Well. This one just burns you alive and makes you enjoy every fiery second of it. WHAT A RIDE.I'm far too impatient to get on with the next book, so here's a random assortment of my thoughts and feelings on this glorious work of new adult literature...(((kindasorta spoilers incoming))) Things I thought I wouldn't like: • L I SALUTE ANYONE THAT HAD TO LIVE MORE THAN AN ENTIRE YEAR DANGLING OFF THAT BRUTAL CLIFFHANGER OH MY HOLY FUCKRemember when I called A Darker Shade of Magic a slow-burner? HA. Well. This one just burns you alive and makes you enjoy every fiery second of it. WHAT A RIDE.I'm far too impatient to get on with the next book, so here's a random assortment of my thoughts and feelings on this glorious work of new adult literature...(((kindasorta spoilers incoming))) Things I thought I wouldn't like: • Lila and Kell being separated for the most part• New major characters aka Alucard Emery• The descriptive writing style and pace• Scenes in White London Things I liked: • Lila and Kell being separated for the most part• New major characters aka Alucard Emery• The descriptive writing style and pace• Scenes in White LondonIt's amazing really. Waiting for the release of A Conjuring of Light wasn't the only thing that held me back from starting this ages ago— oh no, it was knowing that Kell and Lila wouldn't actually be seeing each other for the better part of the book that takes all the credit for that.And yet here I am, loving this sequel so much more quite possibly just because of that. It's not that I didn't miss or crave our favorite duo's crazy adventures together again, just as much as they probably must have themselves. (In fact, V Schwab better have a whole lotta that in store for us next!) But as they say, distance makes the heart grow fonder and the same is true for my fickle reader's heart. Because when the time finally comes for them to reunite, it's not with a crackle, not with a sizzle, but with a BANG. If this were Instagram, this would be about an appropriate time to implement the use of the #worthit hashtag. And don't even get me started on the charming bastard of a pirat—*cough* privateer that goes by the name of one Alucard Emery. ~swoooon~Here's a little something to help show how I feel about our newly sailed ship:And here's reasons to love Lila 101:There's no need to supply reasons to love Kell because that's simply a universal fact, of course. (FIGHT ME ON THIS I DARE YOU)Bonus fan art because they're just really fucking cool and beautiful and a million hugs and kisses to the artists that created them whoever you wonderful humans are:And finally. White London. THIS IS EXACTLY WHAT I'D WANTED AND HOPED FOR AND I AM SO HAPPY BUT ALSO NOT HAPPY BECAUSE COULD EVERYONE JUST LEAVE MY POOR BBY HOLLAND ALOOONE D':All I can say is V. E. Schwab's writing goes beyond measure for me this time round and I am sold by her compelling storytelling style. Sign me up for anything this woman writes!
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  • Kai
    September 3, 2015
    The prince shrugged. “Who needs magic when you look this good?”This book set fire to my feelings and shattered my mind. Tore my heart into pieces and stole my soul.I am officially and utterly dead.Victoria Schwab worked her magic like a genius. This book was flawless, from start to finish. From cover to characters, from plot to setting, from language to imagination. And while I thought A Darker Shade of Magic was amazing, it was only the tip of the iceberg. Nothing can compare to A Gathering of The prince shrugged. “Who needs magic when you look this good?”This book set fire to my feelings and shattered my mind. Tore my heart into pieces and stole my soul.I am officially and utterly dead.Victoria Schwab worked her magic like a genius. This book was flawless, from start to finish. From cover to characters, from plot to setting, from language to imagination. And while I thought A Darker Shade of Magic was amazing, it was only the tip of the iceberg. Nothing can compare to A Gathering of Shadows. (...well. Harry Potter can. But, I mean, please...)(view spoiler)[Now let me talk freely. Lila is a unique character but Saints she annoyed me in the end. Stubborn to a point of being stupid! But oh I am so glad for Alucards existence, or better for that HEAVENLY KISS SCENE OH MY GOD. Please, Victoria, let them share lots of private moments and make-out scenes in ADSOM #3!!! I've never been much of a shipper but these two give me everything. Rhy is one of my favourite ever characters and even if everything goes to ruins, as long as Rhy and Alucard are together in the end, I will be satisfied.But no, really, I don't know where this is going. Lila will probably save Kell, I guess. And I won't be surprised if one or more important characters end up dead. But that's as far as it goes with my guessing. What is happening to Rhy? To Kell? Red London? Grey and White London? Alucard? The King and the Queen(fuck them tho.) The other Kingdoms? I have no idea. (hide spoiler)]The ending was - minor spoiler here - a stab in the chest. A Cliffhanger. Meaning endless waiting time for the sequel. How will I survive this?Find more of my books on Instagram
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  • Clara
    August 16, 2016
    ** 5+++ "I’M OBSESSED AND IN AWE" !! stars **It’s official, this series now has a hold on me and it won’t let go. I’m in love with the writing, the world and the characters ! This series has definitely made it to the top of my all-time favorite series with this second installment ! It’s been a while since I absolutely loved everything about a series or felt so invested, but I have to say these books gave me everything I’m looking for when I read a book ! First off, let’s be honest, this second i ** 5+++ "I’M OBSESSED AND IN AWE" !! stars **It’s official, this series now has a hold on me and it won’t let go. I’m in love with the writing, the world and the characters ! This series has definitely made it to the top of my all-time favorite series with this second installment ! It’s been a while since I absolutely loved everything about a series or felt so invested, but I have to say these books gave me everything I’m looking for when I read a book ! First off, let’s be honest, this second installment didn’t have much of a plot like the first one had with the whole getting rid of the Black Stone and fighting off the Dane Twins. Nothing much happened for the two thirds of the book, and we only got a glimpse of the heavy stuff finally happening only at the very end of the book. BUT, I didn’t care, because the author still managed to have me engrossed the whole time ! With this second book, Schwab decided to focus on her characters : their well-done development, their complexity, their struggles against their own demons, the dynamics as well as the relationships between all of them, creating the feeling as if we were close to them, as if we deeply knew them up to their darkest secrets and feelings, making us care about them to the point where I was scared all the time for my babies and couldn’t bear the thought of any of them getting hurt. ”Everyone thinks I have a death wish, you know ? But I don’t want to die- dying is easy. No, I want to live, but getting close to death is the only way to feel alive. And once you do, it makes you realize that everything you were doing before wasn’t actually living. It was just making do. Call me crazy, but I think we do the best living when the stakes are high.” Obviously, the world-building still played a huge part in my loving this second book so much. It was still just as amazing, well thought-out and mesmerizing. The magic system still has me awed with how detailed it is, how it has a darkness to it making it fascinating. But Schwab made it even more badass and epic by opening the borders of her world beyond Red London and Arnes to introduce us to pirates, oops, sorry, I meant “privateers” ;D as well as the people from other Empires, this only accented more by the Element Games that brought action and even more diversity to the world (I couldn’t help but picture the Olympic Games that just ended when thinking about the Element Games, I guess it was just because of the mood ^^). The storyline in this one was more slow-paced but very subtle, smoothly and cleverly leading you to where the author wanted to get you the whole time. Once again, even though there wasn’t a lot of action for most of the book, I never found myself bored, just entranced by the characters and their journey. Speaking of the characters , there’s basically not one I didn’t absolutely love ! If that was even possible, I fell more in love with KELL. In this one, he no longer feels like a possession to the Red London’s Royal family but more like a prisoner. No one, except for Rhy, trusts him anymore, everyone fears or hates him, blaming him for the Black Night. Kell feels out of place and for the first time actually considers just running away, but he can’t bring himself to leave his brother behind. I felt Kell’s loneliness and the unfairness of his treatment, I just wanted to hug him and tell him that I would never turn my back on him and that I’ll always love him ^^ (view spoiler)[I was afraid at the end that Kell would turn to the dark side because of the Royal family’s rejection but thank God, he came to his senses, but I’m still scared of what’s going to happen to him now. Hopefully, Lila is going to come to his rescue, I’m sure she’ll make it, badass as she is ;) (hide spoiler)]RHY also managed to win me over ! I loved his cockiness, how he always seems cheerful, always ready to party and flirt. He also had kind of a childish side to him that just made him a sweetheart and melt my heart. But behind all that façade, Rhy had demons of his own, not bearing what he did in the previous book and his brother’s suffering because of him and trying his best to make it better for Kell. I loved their bromance which was much more developed in this second book. Kell and Rhy had an easy banter, always looking out for the other, they’re a real team, it’s like it’s them against everyone else, and it just made my heart burst with love for them both. ”What brings you to my room ?” Kell asked, relief bleeding into annoyance.“Adventure. Intrigue. Brotherly concern. Or,” continued the prince lazily, “perhaps I’m just giving your mirror something to look at besides your constant pout.”Kell frowned, and Rhy smiled. “Ah, there it is ! That famous scowl.” LILA was still badass, reckless, restless, always looking for trouble, trying her hardest not to care too much about her crew or Kell, but realizing she can’t help it. Lila and Kell were apart for most of the book, but once they finally came back together, I felt like it was totally worth the wait. Their relationship slowly takes a deeper meaning, with both of them having missed the other one and understanding the other’s loneliness and thirst for freedom and thrills. I also very much liked Lila’s relationship with Alucard, which felt more like a master/student or big brother/little sister relationship. They had great banter, both of them being stubborn, I loved how Alucard was always there to look out for Lila even if she didn’t need it, trying to get secrets out of her but at the same time helping her with her magic. ALUCARD was a great addition to the story, he was a cocky and witty Captain, very skilled and badass with magic, but also wise and he had an air of superiority. And that thing with Rhy, totally unexpected but absolutely loved it ! (view spoiler)[That kiss was HOT !! I’m excited for more of them ! (hide spoiler)] ”You’re still mad at me,” Alucard said. Lila straightened. “You tried to seduce me, for information.”“You can’t hold that against me forever.”“It was last night.”“Well, I was running out of options, and I figured it was worth a shot.”Lila rolled her eyes. “You really know how to make a girl feel special.”“I thought I was in trouble precisely for making you feel special.” But that ending though ?! I can’t, I need book 3 RIGHT now !! I hope everything will be okay for my babies !! ^_^
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  • Brittney ~ Her Bookish Things
    January 22, 2016
    Wowowowow. If you have not picked up this series yet, pick it up now. Right now. I feel I can't even put into words how I feel about this book - but I'm going to try anyway.To start, I liked "A Darker Shade of Magic" (book #1 in this series) a lot - but I wasn't out of my mind in love. I liked the characters and the world building was so unique and engaging. The story was good- but it left me wanting more to happen to the characters (which was perfect, because I knew there was a sequel coming ou Wowowowow. If you have not picked up this series yet, pick it up now. Right now. I feel I can't even put into words how I feel about this book - but I'm going to try anyway.To start, I liked "A Darker Shade of Magic" (book #1 in this series) a lot - but I wasn't out of my mind in love. I liked the characters and the world building was so unique and engaging. The story was good- but it left me wanting more to happen to the characters (which was perfect, because I knew there was a sequel coming out.) And I'm not gonna lie... I wanted a spark between Kell and Lila. Sorry not sorry.This book took the story to a new level. I mean- I was totally mind blown. There are so many good points to hit on. Action. Magic. Pirates. Balls. Masks. Competitions. Serious chemistry. Yes you read that right. Chemistry.AND DONT EVEN GET ME STARTED ON THE FEELS. DONT EVEN.Just to break it down a little bit though...Lila = Extreme badass extraordinaire. Heavens I love this girl.Kell = Pretty much a saint. I can't explain it.. he's just wonderful, and tormented, and wonderful...Alucard = I can't pinpoint him, and I LOVE that. Rhy = King of banter... and of aggravating the living shit out of Kell in the most wonderful waysThe villian who shall remain unnamed for now = BETCHA DIDNT SEE THAT COMING.The characters are so beautifully woven together. The plot is absolutely fantastically and horribly unpredictable. Oh and the writing - oh it was superb. Beautiful in every way. “Politics is a dance until the moment it becomes a war. And we control the music.” Now I want to prepare you, my fellow readers. Lila and Kell are apart for a very good chunk of this book. BUT I PROMISE it is well worth the agony of seeing them apart. SO so so so so worth it. Just you wait. Plus, there are so many great moments in their separate paths before they reunite. “I know it’s mad, but for a second I thought it was …” "Saints, you’re seeing her in everyone and everything now, Kell? There’s a word for that.” "Hallucination?” "Infatuation.” I refuse to discuss the ending right now. I refuse. But I promise you this- there are some very fulfilling moments before the ending. Superb. New favorite series. Now go read it so we can talk about it more because I am not satisfied with only writing a blog post!*Update* Can we please just rave about how this series is about to get a TV SERIES?!?!?!?!?!
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  • emma
    February 28, 2017
    hey, I posted this review! one of my most unpopular opinions yet :-) ah, memories. find it here: https://emmareadstoomuch.wordpress.co...----------------------------I'd like to propose a contender for the worst feeling in the world: going into a book with 100% certainty you’ll like it, and then that confidence slowlyyyyy - almost imperceptibly - fading into hatred. Especially when the average rating of said book is a four-point-f*cking-three-five.But I can’t not hate this book. So much of this i hey, I posted this review! one of my most unpopular opinions yet :-) ah, memories. find it here: https://emmareadstoomuch.wordpress.co...----------------------------I'd like to propose a contender for the worst feeling in the world: going into a book with 100% certainty you’ll like it, and then that confidence slowlyyyyy - almost imperceptibly - fading into hatred. Especially when the average rating of said book is a four-point-f*cking-three-five.But I can’t not hate this book. So much of this is nightmare scenario after nightmare scenario wrapped into one misleading synopsis. I was, quite frankly, SHOCKED by how quickly universally adored author V.E. Schwab introduced the not-like-other-girls trope, which you all know I abhor. At least buy a girl dinner first, Victoria. I'll set the scene: Liiiiilaaaaa (read that in a sarcastically loving voice, please) is at a market. Literally looking at knives because she has no personality traits or sense of fun. Anyway, another stereotype on two legs the captain of her ship says, for no goddamn reason except, I presume, his own terribleness: “Most girls covet dresses.” Bad enough, right? Already enough to make me cringe hard and dock at least a star or so? IT GETS WORSE. Darling Lila’s response: “I am not most girls.” It literally cannot get any more blatant. I was so disgusted I read the scene aloud to my sister, and she shuddered.In fact, it’s kind of...strange how sexist this book is. The great thing about YA books is that a lot of them are written by feminists, but the subliminal messages here made my skin crawl. There’s not just the not-like-other-girls stuff (or, as I call it, Sexism Lite: So Quirky Ladies Who Hate Other Women Can Still Claim to be Feminist). Every. Single. Female character is judged for her appearance. Strong women are stripped of their gender identity - a couple of times, characters question whether muscular women are truly women at all. Which, like, f*ck you forever. Are you kidding me? And don’t forget the princess (from Vesk?). Her only character trait is boy-crazy. Instead of being a powerful female leader, she follows Kell around like a lovesick puppy...exactly, we are told, what she did to Rhy a couple years before. And don't forget the disapproving tone of the text when she's with any man. Subliminal slut shaming - cool! Oooh, and “She looked like the kind of girl who would point to something — or someone — and say, ‘I want one of those.’” Wow! Please tell me more about how there are kinds of girls.More fun stuff: I literally hate all of these characters. How often does that happen?! Like, don’t get me wrong, I am completely just a heartless vessel designed to carry as much bitterness and anger as possible, but usually I’m at least neutral toward somebody. Not here. We follow four-ish main characters: Alucard, Rhy, Kell and Lila. (Putting Lila last because, if you couldn’t already tell by the fury leaking through this, she is the crown jewel in my treasure trove of loathing.)The fun thing about this book is we get two - yes, two! - characters fighting for dominance over the same piece of sh*t stereotype! Yeah, Schwab had so much success with one character in that dumbass role that she went two for two in this one. I’m talking about Rhy and Alucard, and I’m talking about the YA male character archetype that I CANNOT ESCAPE. The roguish, flirty, handsome societal elite, who’s just soooooo tired of his hard-knock life of wealth and luxury and because of it can’t even stand to live up to expectations or within social bounds. Also, we’re always supposed to find these types funny, and I have never cracked a smile at one of these dumbos.Agreed - mainly because it isn’t working. I feel like I can’t goddamn escape these goons of late. They’re the Will Herondales, the what’s-his-name from Heartless (the jester guy who wore eyeliner), Adrian from Bloodlines (will I ever finish that series?), one or more of the 8000 guys from Throne of Glass (literally can’t remember). Sorry I spaced on some of the names, but there’s an epidemic of these bozos and they’re SO unmemorable. But to have TWO of the same stereotype?! In the same book?! Extraordinary. I’ve never seen anything like it (and pray I never will again).Now...Kell. There is no way on God’s great green Earth I can fill a paragraph talking about Kell. He is the most boring character to ever boring up his way through a trilogy. Does the boy have any traits? Does he have a sense of humor? Fun, maybe? No? He’s just going to grumble around for 500 pages and be in love with Lila for no reason? Okay.And...here we go. The moment I’ve been waiting for since approximately page 17 of this book. Talking about why LILA SUCKS UP A STORM. The gal’s a prime example of a really annoying factor of bad character-writing: telling and not showing. How many times are we TOLD, “Lila is smart. Lila is a quick study. Lila was born with the magical talent of the Chosen One, but maybe if we don’t use that term then you won’t notice and write about it in your reviews. Lila is brave. Lila is strong. Lila looks for trouble.” Now, compare that to how often it’s actually proven. Rarely, if ever. It’s annoying and boring and makes me want to sign V.E. Schwab up for an intro to creative writing class.But that’s not where my problems end with ol’ Lila. No, it takes a bit more than that to end up on my most-hated characters list. Lila’s an annoying, bossy brat with a death wish, an inferiority complex, and the impenetrable belief that she knows better than everyone else. She knows better than her captain: when she is so insubordinate that Alucard has to remind her “I am your captain! You are my crew,” she thinks, “The barb struck with unexpected force.” NOT A BARB, LILA. YOU ARE NOT IN CHARGE. YOU ARE A PETTY THIEF ABOARD A SHIP. GET OVER YOURSELF!She does the same to the head-magicky-guy (I kind of never paid attention to the terms in this book). At one point in the last book, I guess, he told her he thought she had magic within her. Lila latches onto that and uses it as her justification for making a metric sh*t ton of bad decisions that could have extraordinarily negative impacts on her, her loved ones, and the entire goddamn world(s). When Chief Inspector Magic tries to prevent her from making one of these many dumb choices, she responds, "You told me that I had magic in me. Now you don't think I have what it takes?" Um, you’re untrained and a full-on dumbass and you want this guy who actually knows his stuff to fan your already-enormous ego and tell you you can win a huge magic tournament?And she does it again, to Kell, who knows more about her and more about the kind of magic she wants to do than ANYONE. And she’s just a total bitch to him and he’s all, “yeah ok” and kisses her stupid face. Ugh. I’m getting so angry AND putting off math homework that’s due in 37 minutes. It’s time to stop talking about Lila and try to wrap this shindig up.So much of this book is just...cliche to me. That moment when Lila is talking to the man at the mirror stall and he calls her Lila and she goes, all quasi-spook-ily, It wasn't until after I left that I realized I had never told him my name.................... or whatever? Made me GAG. And it wasn't even for anything! That guy never comes back. We never get more info, really, on the mirrors or on the shopkeeper or any of that. It's just a dumb cliche being used for a dumb cliched manner of foreshadowing. Like, omg, does she want the dark power slash thing she is entirely uneducated about?! Even though she shouldn't?? Even though the big strong experienced man warns her not to do whatever said thing is? Oh my god! I have never read anything like that before! Except, like, you know...The Winner's Kiss, Divergent, Siege and Storm, Throne of Glass, The 5th Wave, Passenger, Rebel Belle, Alice. I could definitely go on. Because that is one of my least favorite tropes that also manages to be super boring in every instance it is used. Seriously, shall I ever cease to be astounded by the untouched realms of young adult fantasy this book doth discover?And after all that, it’s not even fun. I wanted to read about a magic tournament, but it took 350 pages to get there and only lasted about 100 (generously). The rest of the book is a carbon copy of the events of the last book. I don’t want to spoil anything, but the grand cliffhanger of the book happens in the exact same way at the exact same event as the last book. It is, in other words, a snoozefest.Bottom line: clichéd, sexist, teeming with some of the worst characters I’ve ever read, misleading, repetitive, occasionally illogical, and boring. Does that sum it up? Bleh.
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  • Cece (ProblemsOfaBookNerd)
    March 15, 2017
    *screeches and runs to Amazon to order ACoL IMMEDIATELY*
  • Anne
    September 12, 2016
    So the 1st book, A Darker Shade of Magic, didn't blow me away. I liked it, but I just didn't quite love it.Interested, but not invested.Which means I didn't rush out to grab a copy of this one, because I just wasn't sure how excited I actually was to read it.However, my trepidation was unwarranted. A Gathering of Shadows was so much better than I expected it to be! There was this whole connection to the characters that (I felt) was missing from the 1st book, and this time around the author made So the 1st book, A Darker Shade of Magic, didn't blow me away. I liked it, but I just didn't quite love it.Interested, but not invested.Which means I didn't rush out to grab a copy of this one, because I just wasn't sure how excited I actually was to read it.However, my trepidation was unwarranted. A Gathering of Shadows was so much better than I expected it to be! There was this whole connection to the characters that (I felt) was missing from the 1st book, and this time around the author made me feel? Plus, (and I love it when a book does this) I caught myself saying stuff out loud while I was reading.Like: Oh, shit! and I thought he was dead!Good stuff.Oh, and there were a lot of new developments, cool reveals, and (of course) answers-to-questions-that-just-lead-to-more-questions. Very EXCITING!Sadly, I'm so late to this party, and there are so many fantastic reviews up already that I don't feel the need to waste your (very valuable, I'm sure) time re-hashing the plot.I will say I think this one is worth your time, even if you weren't a huge fan of book #1.
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  • Chelsea ❤Peril Please❤ (of BADGER and Snake)
    April 21, 2015
    *and now I wait...* And then in the silence, he heard a sound: not a sob, or a scream, but a laugh.And it took him a moment to recognize the voice.It was his. 2016 has by far been one of my most rewarding reading years yet, beginning with almost 90% win and so little loss. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I’ve taken what I’ve learned and I have applied it to almost every book I might read, making it extremely easy to see what might work for me…and what won’t. It’s not a fool proof sy *and now I wait...* And then in the silence, he heard a sound: not a sob, or a scream, but a laugh.And it took him a moment to recognize the voice.It was his. 2016 has by far been one of my most rewarding reading years yet, beginning with almost 90% win and so little loss. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I’ve taken what I’ve learned and I have applied it to almost every book I might read, making it extremely easy to see what might work for me…and what won’t. It’s not a fool proof system, I’ll admit, but it certainly makes it easier when there is a bad book thrown in here or there. It’s not near as annoying as when I consistently am reading crap. But, with all this epicness so early in the year, there are also some fears arising, as well…and that’s if I can keep up all this win-It’s a long year, and there’s still a lot of disappointment to be had (Like a couple ends to a few of my favorite series that fell flat, unfortunately). But one thing is an absolute certainty: In a sea of losers, when it comes to second books in series and such, I never had any doubt about how amazing the Darker Shade second book would be….and I have no doubt that the end will take my breath away. But he’d missed her, and with the city so overrun, how was he supposed to find her again?Just follow the knives, said a voice in his head. And the bodies they’re lodged in. I have this curse, you see, where I HATE second books-almost always. I will admit that that’s began to change as of late, but I still find that a few eek in here and there. More often than not, though, it seems the third and final books have been the largest problem: Lack of execution, not tying things up, changing the whole premise of the story, changing characters, etc. etc.-And it has been a large disappointment, more often than not. It’s starting to make the second book curse look tame!! But no, when I picked this book up, I immediately felt my weary muscles relax, my mood lighten, and my heart begin to beat faster and faster. Dangerous.Reckless.Foolish.Mad. It doesn’t matter that this fell into one of my least favorite second book tropes (was it a trope, though?? It was kind of a choice?), because every sentence, every page, every little thing was written so beautifully and made it so you couldn’t help to read one more page, one more chapter…and then, before you knew it, you were ten more percent in and still couldn’t stop. Lila stopped drawing her finger through the cider, and no one noticed that the spilled liquid kept moving, tracing patterns across the wood. Someone set a fresh drink in front of her.Alucard was calling for attention.“To London,” he said, raising his glass.Lila raised her own.“To London,” she said, smiling like a knife. These characters just have a way about them. It’s not so much that they are different from other characters we love, adore, cherish, admire, obsess about-No, it’s not that. It’s something in their chemistry, in their DNA, something that, immediately upon meeting them, crawled under your skin without you even realizing it. It's something that made you think about them long after you had closed the book. It's something that had you thinking about them in the dark, longing for more of their adventure deep into the night. You just have this deeper understanding of them….and yet you still want to know more. He didn’t have anything on his person, and they wouldn’t be able to find anything in his coat, not unless he wanted it to be found. He sometimes worried that the coat had a mind of its own. The only other person who’d ever managed to find what they wanted in its pockets was Lila. He’d never found out how she’d done that. Traitorous coat. I can’t even begin to explain how much I adore this story, for I can’t think of many books where something I hate becomes a giggle fest for me. A sleight of hand. A shadow in the corner. A lingering thought. A hopeless wish, or maybe even a longing so deep they saw each other everywhere-it’s the simplest thing, yet it gets under your skin and becomes a part of you. I adore these characters so intensely that it became a visceral thing when one of them would hurt, when one of them would cry, when one of them was in absolute pain. And I know you all probably think it’s all Kell and all Lila…but it’s not-Not even close. As a thief in the night, Lila Bard knew that staying out of the light was the surest way to stay alive, but she couldn’t help it, she relished this kind of trick. Standing right in front of a mark while you pocketed their coins. Smiling while you stole. Looking them in the eye and daring them to see past the ruse. Because the best tricks were the ones pulled off not while the mark’s back was turned, but while they were watching. There’s Rhy. There’s Alucard. There’s Calla. And, ya know, there’s Lila’s crew…but that’s beside the point-YOU GET THE PICTURE. Rhy and Alucard became two characters who I couldn’t live without, simply because they meant the world to my lovely Kell and my fierce Lila-they were central to the story and not only added to it, but enhanced every single scene. They brought forth extreme visceral, intense emotion that caused the most amazing feelings-Pain, heartache. Soul-crushing love. Unyielding friendship. Loyalty….Jealousy. Like I said, there really is no emotion I haven’t felt while reading this series, and I can’t help but to want to re-read it already. In fact, I could read these two books over and over and over again. But I’m at work (SHHHHH, my laptop has gone to SHIT) and I can’t keep going on and on and on and…..yeah, I love this story, this could go on for a while. So! I will get onto what I want to anyway: My two beautiful lovebirds, Kell and Lila. I am Delilah Bard, she thought. Pirate, thief, magician.Her fingertips began to thrum.I have crossed worlds and taken ships. Fought queens and saved cities.Her bones shuddered and her blood raced.I am one of a kind. Lila is a stubborn little shit, I’ll admit, especially in this one, but she is so damn loyal, fierce, and she has a thirst for life I can’t help but to admire. She longs to see the world, and she is finally seeing it…but she can’t help but to think back to the boy with one beautiful eye and one black, his face set in a perpetual frown with a little crease between his brows (Hey, I didn’t say Lila was the only one who loved him….). And what better way to see him than to compete in the Essen Tasch…a deadly competition showcasing magic from some of the most skilled magicians in their world-Something so dangerous only Lila would find a way into it. “What brings you to my room?” he asked, relief bleeding into annoyance. “Adventure. Intrigue. Brotherly concern. Or,” continued the prince lazily, “perhaps I’m just giving your mirror something to look at besides your constant pout.”Kell frowned, and Rhy smiled. “Ah, there it is! That famous scowl.”“I don’t scowl,” grumbled Kell. And then my Kell…my darling Kell. This book was hard for him, in more ways than one. He is lonely. He is tortured from the events in the previous installment (subtly so, but still there). He has a restlessness inside him that is unparalleled to anything he has ever felt before. And, now more than ever, he feels like he doesn’t belong with the family he was brought into…only Rhy makes him feel as he always has-Like a brother. They love each other so intensely, and it is beautiful to see-and then I just love their banter….it keeps Kell grounded and gives Rhy joy to make the forever frowning Kell smile or laugh. “How subtle,” said Kell tonelessly.“You could at least pretend to be grateful.”“And you couldn’t have picked something a little more…I don’t know…imposing? A serpent? A great beast? A bird of prey?”“A bloody handprint?” retorted Rhy. “Oh, what about a glowing black eye?”Kell glowered. But my point in saying all that is he and Rhy are closer than ever *insert eye brow raise here* but there is something darker inside them, something that makes it harder to be who they once were. They feel the gravity of it weighing them down each passing day-They are beginning to feel suffocated and have no way to release it. But Kell would do literally anything for his brother, something we saw many times in the last book, but we now see that Rhy would do the same…and it warmed my soul. He tipped his chin up so the men could see his eyes, and took a measure of grim satisfaction as the color bled from their faces. And then footsteps sounded, and Kell turned to find more men pouring into the alley. Drunk and angry and armed. Something stirred in him.His heart raced, and magic surged through his veins. He felt something on his face, and it took him a moment to realize he was smiling. It was so hard to see how deeply Kell’s loneliness went, how it effected him every moment of every day…and how he buried it deep within himself so he could continue to help his brother. But when his brother comes to him with a proposition so dangerous, so deadly, so…..exciting, Kell can’t help but to consider it. He’s an Antari…so he can’t compete…but will they find a way around that loophole?? And, most importantly, why can’t he stop thinking about his sharp-edged girl with two differently shaded brown eyes with a knack for knives, thievery, and trouble…and why does he see her in every little person, shadow, and alley? “Hello,” said Lila.“Hello,” said Kell. “Where have you been?”Lila smirked. “Why, did you miss me?”Kell opened his mouth. Closed it. Opened it again before finally managing to answer, “Yes.” This story was naturally made for me, what with all the danger, the peril, the competition, the friendship, passion, and loyalty. I loved the pulse-pounding ending and this whole story, really, but the first admittedly holds my heart, if I’m being honest. I just wanted people to know-the first may not be everyone’s favorite-but it’s mine *shrugs* I can’t help it!!! I just adore first books SO MUCH!!! But, more than that, Kell makes this series for me. I love the writing, the atmosphere, everything about it….but Kell keeps me coming back because I adore every little thing about him. He would do anything for his brother Rhy….but he would for Lila, too. He’d risk his life a million times over for them, and my heart swells even now as I type this out. He has my heart, and so does this series. I know I will surely die of anticipation before February 2017….but it will be completely worth the wait. And I know a certain Snake will be more than happy to finish this adventure with me. KELL!! ♥For more of my reviews, please visit: **********************My feels for this series in GIF form... OMGGGGG MY POOR BOOOY!!!!! I just love this series and Kell so so much! What a cruel thing to have to wait until 2017 for the finale to this absolutely breathtaking, soul-crushing, heartbreaking series. I can't believe this series has reached me on such a deep, emotional level, but it has...I am completely obsessed with it. From it's characters to the setting to the intricate plot, there isn't a moment in either book where I haven't loved and adored it. These characters have such loyalty, such deep, heart-felt connections to those surrounding them-you just can't help but get sucked into the magic that is this world.I cannot WAIT to write a review for book two of one of my favorite series EVER!!! :PRTC (I WILL DO THIS)For more of my reviews, please visit:
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  • Melissa ♥ Dog Lover ♥ Martin
    July 29, 2016
    I got to read more of the bad arsed, Lila Bard and Kell and Rhy! Yay! I loved the beginning of this book with Lila. People for me, this was the best part of the book with what all Lila did to that crew! Holy crow! I am Delilah Bard, she though as the ropes cut into her skin. I am a thief and a pirate and a traveler. I have set foot in three different worlds, and lived. I have shed the blood of royals and held magic in my hands. And a ship full of men cannot do what I can, I don't need any of you I got to read more of the bad arsed, Lila Bard and Kell and Rhy! Yay! I loved the beginning of this book with Lila. People for me, this was the best part of the book with what all Lila did to that crew! Holy crow! I am Delilah Bard, she though as the ropes cut into her skin. I am a thief and a pirate and a traveler. I have set foot in three different worlds, and lived. I have shed the blood of royals and held magic in my hands. And a ship full of men cannot do what I can, I don't need any of you. I am one of a damned kind.I also fell in love with Lila's captain aboard the Night Spire - Captain Aluccard Emery. He's so awesome! He is a little bit of this and a little bit of that and a whole lot of coolness =)Not a whole lot goes on in the book after the fun stuff in the beginning. I feel it's just another set up for more things to come in the next book. At some point though, magic welders come together in The Element Games called Essen Tasch. Some people I didn't expect were in these games and against each other. It was pretty damn cool! I loved reading about Kell and Rhy together again. They are so funny and caring. They are so close in everything they do and it was so wonderful to see them fighting for each other. To read the things that only love for someone you consider your brother can bring to your heart. Rhy wants Kell to compete in the games but Kell doesn't want to for certain reasons. "Kell. My greatest fear in life isn't dying. It's being the source of someone else's suffering. I know you feel trapped. I know I'm your cage. And I can't---" His voice broke, and Kell could feel his brother's pain, everything he tried to smother until dark and drown until morning. "You will do this, " said Rhy. "For me. For both of us." Kell held his brother's gaze. "All right,"he said.And Lila and Kell get to see each other again. And Rhy too, the whole gang. It was so great! And then . . . that ending!Something Wicked This Way ComesMY BLOG: Melissa Martin's Reading List
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  • Kainat Ijaz 《UNPOPULAR OPINION ALERT》
    March 1, 2016
    “She bent most of the rules. She broke the rest.” 5 stars just don't seem enough!This is the kind of book that will give you a hangover. Full review to come... maybe. I don't know how to review this, it was so magical. It's been a while since i've enjoyed a book this much. “Kell used to feel like a possession. Now he felt like a prisoner.” THAT ENDING THO!! You know how i put "unpopular opinion alert" next to my name? Well, it's because of books like this. I loved the ending!!! It made me love “She bent most of the rules. She broke the rest.” 5 stars just don't seem enough!This is the kind of book that will give you a hangover. Full review to come... maybe. I don't know how to review this, it was so magical. It's been a while since i've enjoyed a book this much. “Kell used to feel like a possession. Now he felt like a prisoner.” THAT ENDING THO!! You know how i put "unpopular opinion alert" next to my name? Well, it's because of books like this. I loved the ending!!! It made me love Delilah even more than i already do! “I am a thief and a pirate and a traveler. I have set foot in three different worlds, and lived. I have shed the blood of royals and held magic in my hands.” Kell, Rhy and Alucard!!!!Ahh i can't wait for the next book. <<< Might have spoilers of the first book >>> You know that big bad bitch from Black London, can he please kill the Red king and his queen? I fucking hate them! The way they treat Kell ..!! They better die soon, I'm so fucking sick of them. "Fix your crown, my prince. It's crooked." -^^Holly fucking shit!!! What The hell did just happen? Why don't i ever see these things coming? Ahhh! *Blush*"'Crossing worlds, killing royals, saving cities. The mark of a very good courtship.' (Rhy)'We weren't courting.' Snapped Kell. 'In case you forgot, she left.'He didn't mean to sound so wounded."-I thought Alucard was going to ignore her completely, but instead they have this deep conversation."What are you supposed to be?" She asked. "A fish?""Obviously," Alucard said, "i'm a dragon.""Wouldn't it make more sense for you to be a fish?" Challenged Lila. "After all, you do live on the sea, and you are rather slippery, and . . ""I'm a dragon," he interjected. "You are just not being very imaginative."^^Lmao, so stupid these two are! *says in the most affectionate tone*-Can we just all agree that Lila and Alucard are horrible people! But they make an immensely entertaining team. Such exclusive characters this book has! -I love Jinnar already! Love his name! I like his element. His physical discrpition had me like, WOW!! The whole conversation between him and Alucard was very amusing. I was dying laughing the whole time. The very first thing Alucard says to him is;"They let you out in public?" LOL-I freaking adore Hastra (Kell's "very handsome" guard.) He is so cute, and funny. The other one I don't like, though i do feel bad for him. :("'You know, if you can rule half as well as you can lie, you're going to make an incredible King.' (Kell)Rhy's smile was a dazzling thing. 'Thank you.'"-Okay, fine, I admit, Rhy is growing on me. " '. . but your features are unique.''Why are you calling me ugly?' (Kell)Rhy snorted. 'We both know you're the prettiest boy at the ball.'"-^^Lmao, i love this!!-If Kell gets caught, they are both so dead! I'm a little scared but excited. #livedangerously -I'm not the most romantic person on the this earth, but it irritates me when my main characters get separated! Gahhh!-Why does Ojka remind me of Manon Blackbeak?You know when you are starving and you only have a little bit of food, even though you want to just devour it in one bite, you try to make it last as long as you can? That's me right now with this book. I'll drag it as long as it's possible!
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  • Simona Bartolotta
    February 24, 2016
    PRE-READING: I know I'm already currently reading two books, but we're talking about the sequel to A Darker Shade of Magic and the umpteenth buddy read with Nina. I dare you to say no to that.4.5"Crossing worlds, killing royals, saving cities. The marks of every good courtship."Have you tried to read this book aloud?Sorry, that sounds foolish, of course. I will reformulate:Have you tried to read even just one of Victoria Schwab's sentences aloud?If you have and now are reading this, that logical PRE-READING: I know I'm already currently reading two books, but we're talking about the sequel to A Darker Shade of Magic and the umpteenth buddy read with Nina. I dare you to say no to that.4.5"Crossing worlds, killing royals, saving cities. The marks of every good courtship."Have you tried to read this book aloud?Sorry, that sounds foolish, of course. I will reformulate:Have you tried to read even just one of Victoria Schwab's sentences aloud?If you have and now are reading this, that logically leads me to the conclusion that, at some point, you have also been able to stop. I congratulate on your fortitude.If you have not, then I will have a harder time trying to let you see why this book, just as A Darker Shade of Magic did before it, enchants and bewitches and appeals to me so much, but I am believer, and so I will try.•The writing. As I pointed out my review to A Darker Shade of Magic, I don't believe in such a thing as perfection when words are concerned. Because words are slippery things; the harder you try to get hold of them, the easier for them to slide out of your grip. They are fish one moment, lions the next one. They are air when they want to be subtle, smoke when their aim is to dazzle you and fluster you, just slightly, but enough to throw you off balance. But when they mean business? When they are, each one, into their designed place, one after the other, smooth, just ruffled enough to seem easy and natural and yet you know, you know that they are not, that it was all planned, that what you're seeing is just the actualization of a blueprint that had been set down in black and white beforehand? That is when they are fire.As I said, I do not believe in perfection.But Schwab's pen is one of the closest things I have ever seen to it."Kell would say it was impossible. What a useless word, in a world with magic."•It's no secret that this world(s) mesmerises me, and the reason is fundamentally one: magic. Here, magic is a living being, not an it, but a he or a she. And she (in my native tongue it's la magia, feminine noun; indulge me) demands to be acknowledged as such: she has needs and wishes, she requires a care made of both tenderness and firmness, and she retaliates when her expectations are not met. I am irremediably fond of this approach to magic, to the point where I should maybe say she is my favourite character.•Except that, I loved all the other characters just as much. "Standing there on display was painful enough. Now came the truly unfortunate task of socializing."Again, the core reason of my infatuation (love, god, this is love) can be condensed in a very simple concept: they are real. They are ink and paper made flesh and bone, mind and blood. Quality that, in my opinion, is strictly linked with the inconceivably high quality of the writing.•Kell is all my heart can ask for: invincible magician, heart of gold, brow perpetually furrowed. I utterly adored the new depth the author gives to his relationship with Rhy, and with this book also the younger prince officially grew on me.Back to Kell, I was disappointed only by (view spoiler)[the ending: I found too abrupt, unjustified and foolish his choice to follow Ojka, who he had never met before that moment and who, besides, looked everything but trustworthy. Not as much as to call it an out-of-character behaviour, probably, but it really felt off (hide spoiler)].•Lila is a different matter altogether. I love her badassery and always will, I love her fierceness and always will, and I love the fact that she chases adventures for the mere thrill of it; but I think that in this instalment she throws herself in impossible disasters for no reason at all. She could have ruined the life of an innocent man simply because he had something that he wanted and she could. She keeps being reckless and tough, just as the Lila I loved in book one, but now it feels like she is simply having fun at the expense of whoever is on her way, and I don't completely agree with this couldn't-care-less attitude."She bent most of the rules. She broke the rest."•At last Alucard, oh Alucard, who is probably the quickest crush I have ever developed in my life. And, let me say it, the ship is sailing (the pun, please notice the pun). (view spoiler)[I haven't read a scene this hot in months. Months. I think I reread it at least five times. They are wonderful and I want them together at all costs (hide spoiler)]."Fix your crown, my prince," he called back as he reached the door. "It's crooked."In a nutshell: I loved A Gathering of Shadows as much as I loved A Darker Shade of Magic, but for different reasons: the latter is more striking for the writing (even more than this one, and you saw how much I loved the writing in this one so just imagine) and the world-building, though only because because we get to see more of all three -and have also a glimpse of the fourth- Londons, while the former is more compelling and well-balanced when it comes to the story and the pace. The only problem is that cliffhanger.Yeah I know.Cliffhanger. Argh.
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  • Giovanna
    February 10, 2014
    Edit: if you have tips about how to cope with this book please share them, I'm all ears. I'm kind of..dying here. *cries* *cries some more* This is the moment in which I offer Schwab my soul and die."As travars.” Travel.There are authors you like and authors you'd sell your soul to. Victoria Schwab falls in this category. A year ago, give or take a few days, I was raving about A darker shade of magic in a questionable, fangirlish review. This time around I'm going to be a totally collected, extr Edit: if you have tips about how to cope with this book please share them, I'm all ears. I'm kind of..dying here. *cries* *cries some more* This is the moment in which I offer Schwab my soul and die."As travars.” Travel.There are authors you like and authors you'd sell your soul to. Victoria Schwab falls in this category. A year ago, give or take a few days, I was raving about A darker shade of magic in a questionable, fangirlish review. This time around I'm going to be a totally collected, extremely calm reader. Ah, you wish.Thoughts I'll try to put in order: PIRATES, KNIVES, MAGIC TOURNAMENT, MY BABIES, MY SHIP(S), KNIVES AGAIN, PIRATES PIRATES PIRATES. DAMN CLIFFHANGER.As you see these are deep, soul-shattering, life changing thoughts.Truth is, a couple of days ago I was wondering whether I was becoming a picky reader and if AGoS could outshine ADSoM. I'm kind of glad I listened to the voice inside my head that said "not this sh*t again, Gio. Wait for that book and you'll see you're just overthinking this." I do not think AGoS outshined ADSoM, but I think it's even better.Sorry if I bored you with this long unnecessary introduction. - I read a ton of fantasy. Always have, always will, I think. And...I've never read anything like this series. ADSoM introduced us to an interesting, unique world building and AGoS brought it to a new level. It's not just London(s) anymore, as we are introduced to new, faraway places and cultures. There aren't many authors who are able to write completely new worlds with their own set of rules and magic and traditions and only a few of those who do can make you curious about them.- These characters...they feel so real, so alive. The thing is, they have layers to them and so many of them that reading feels like peeling them off one by one. I really like how twisted and broken and human they are. Lila: our favourite thief is back (and she decided to add more to her badassery.)."I am a thief and a pirate and a traveler. I have set foot in three different worlds, and lived. I have shed the blood of royals and held magic in my hands. And a ship full of men cannot do what I can. I don’t need any of you. I am one of a damned kind."Her character development is good, but she actually shined from the beginning. She is extremely complex and I feel like in AGoS Victoria outdid herself with her interior monologue. And her dialogues with Alucard and Kell showed us glimpses of her we did not know. Lila is completely mad and ambicious and terrifying (in a good way) but underneath all those things there is someone who fought for her freedom and is now trying to figure out what, or who, she is. I also love that she's concious of her own faults and strenghts. Yes, she's always crossing her own limits, but I like how she lets herself want things you know? It's difficult to find female characters like this, characters who want to find out things for themselves and then figure out if they can share those dreams and ambitions with other people.Kell is going through some important changes as well. I've always felt like there was more to him than what met the eye and yet I think that even after AGoS there are so many things to discover about him. I felt like this time around we got to see Kell in a different light thanks to his interactions with Rhy. I saw a restless, caged, Kell. Someone whose masks are crumbling. "The thing about freedom, Kell? It doesn't come naturally. Almost no one has it handed to them. I'm free because I fought for it. You're supposed to be the most powerful magician in all the worlds. If you don't want to be here, then go." Rhy is a precious cinnamon roll. I mean, he's always been, but he plays a bigger role in AGoS and reading his povs was necessary to see him is a different light. He's still funny and an adorable flirt, but there's so much more to him now. Like Kell, he changed, and his change was due to the events that took place in ADSoM and to the growth that those events caused. Rhy is living a borrowed life, something that wasn't his to begin with and that made him realise that his actions have bigger consequences than he thought. But don't worry, our favourite prince is still there: The prince shrugged. “Who needs magic when you look this good?"Alucard is a new favourite. I kind of imagine him like a mix of Captain Hook and Nikolai with a touch of Jack Sparrow for good measure. Yeah, he's awesome. "There was a measure of theatre to everything Alucard did. She wondered how many other parts he could play. Wondered which, if any, were not a part, but the actor beneath."-The romance. Ah, there's very little romance in AGoS but at the same time there are a lot of subtle and not-so-subtle hints thrown there every now and then. I'll try to explain. - My ships (yes, plural.) are sailing.- The slow burn romance was extremely well done. I could feel it burn, ever so slowly, even when the characters weren't together. It's the kind of romance that's made of glances, thoughts and memories. It's like a delicious ache in your bones. Subtle but always there.- (view spoiler)[THE ALUCARD/RHY SCENE. SWOON. (hide spoiler)]Plotwise AGoS intrigued me a lot. I actually didn't expect anything that happened, which is positive for me, and the fact that pretty much everything surprised me made the book more enjoyable in a way. I feel like there are two main plotline to address here:- The Magic Tournament, which was basically magical badassery everywhere. I liked that it gave us a glimpse of faraway places, with different languages and belief when it comes to magic and I liked how...magical it felt. To me, fantasy has always been about escaping my own life. When I read a fantasy book I look for many things, but mostly I want to feel like I'm reading something meaningful while I'm awed and amazed at what I read. Red London is that. It's alive and magical and a labyrinth of possibilities. I love it.- If you think that the other Londons aren't alive...well you're in for some surprises. (view spoiler)["“Ojka,” he said now without looking up. Her name was a spell on his lips. “Your Majesty,” she said, kneeling before the pool. His head drifted up. “You know I’m not fond of titles,” he said, rounding the pool. She straightened and met his eyes: one green, the other black. “Call me Holland."" (hide spoiler)] Yeah, that I did not see coming at all. And also (view spoiler)[Magic in Grey London! Holland and Osaron in White London! Something got out of Black London! Ajdjsksndjdoallckdksa *brain goes boom* (hide spoiler)]The ending is cruel, but the right kind of cruel. It made me feel empty and yet so freaking excited for book 3. To those who are starting this book or series: As travars.To those who haven't even started yet: hide in a corner, be ashamed and then buy the damn book.
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  • Alyssa
    November 23, 2015
    OH GOSH OH GOSH OH GOSH I HAVE READ IT I AM OKAY I AM OKAY I AM OKAY I AM NOT OKAY I AM NOT OKAY I AM NOT OKAY OH GOSH AHHHHHHH.Everything hurts and I'm dying (Leslie Knope understands).***Review posted on The Eater of Books! blog***A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. SchwabBook Two of the A Darker Shade of Magic seriesPublisher: TorPublication Date: February 23, 2016Rating: 4 starsSource: ARC sent by the publisherSummary (from Goodreads):Four months have passed since the shadow stone fell into Kell’ OH GOSH OH GOSH OH GOSH I HAVE READ IT I AM OKAY I AM OKAY I AM OKAY I AM NOT OKAY I AM NOT OKAY I AM NOT OKAY OH GOSH AHHHHHHH.Everything hurts and I'm dying (Leslie Knope understands).***Review posted on The Eater of Books! blog***A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. SchwabBook Two of the A Darker Shade of Magic seriesPublisher: TorPublication Date: February 23, 2016Rating: 4 starsSource: ARC sent by the publisherSummary (from Goodreads):Four months have passed since the shadow stone fell into Kell’s possession. Four months since his path crossed with Delilah Bard. Four months since Rhy was wounded and the Dane twins fell, and the stone was cast with Holland’s dying body through the rift, and into Black London.In many ways, things have almost returned to normal, though Rhy is more sober, and Kell is now plagued by his guilt. Restless, and having given up smuggling, Kell is visited by dreams of ominous magical events, waking only to think of Lila, who disappeared from the docks like she always meant to do. As Red London finalizes preparations for the Element Games—an extravagant international competition of magic, meant to entertain and keep healthy the ties between neighboring countries—a certain pirate ship draws closer, carrying old friends back into port.But while Red London is caught up in the pageantry and thrills of the Games, another London is coming back to life, and those who were thought to be forever gone have returned. After all, a shadow that was gone in the night reappears in the morning, and so it seems Black London has risen again—meaning that another London must fall. What I Liked:There is no part of me that is even the slightest bit of okay right now. Victoria Schwab, I loathe you! I mean, I adore you, but I also hate you FOR THAT ENDING! This book was all sorts of brilliant, masterfully written, and painfully cruel. How in the world will I last until February 2017 (let us HOPE and PRAY that that is the latest book three will be published). It has been four months since the ending of A Darker Shade of Magic. Lila is part of the crew of a pirate - privateer - ship, and she's slowly learning about her limits and abilities. Meanwhile, in Red London, Kell struggles with the bond with Rhy. He doesn't dare take chances, not with Rhy's life at stake. Rhy, on the other hand, overdoes everything. Rhy and Red London is preparing for the Element Games, in which Faro, Arnes, and Vesk competitors engage in a tournament meant to showcase the magical abilities of the countries in a friendly way. But another London is rising from the ashes, and no one will see the threat until it's too late.I'll admit - I really struggled with the first half of this book. I think part of me just did NOT want to read it, because I was so excited to finally be reading it. If that makes sense. I got this book months ago and couldn't crack open the review copy until now! I was so excited to finally start it and... I just couldn't. BUT. I don't think it was the book's fault, although I DO think the second half is much more interesting than the first half.We see a lot of Lila on the ship, in the first half. She's her usual thieving, troublesome self, running and running and running. Part of her wonders about Kell, but mostly she's content. She's learning about magic from the ship's Captain, Alucard Emery, who has just as many secrets as she does. Meanwhile, Kell and Rhy are getting into trouble too (mostly Rhy). Schwab REALLY digs deep into Kell's character. Kell walks on eggshells when it comes to Rhy's safety. You can clearly see how much of a toll it's taking on Kell, how withdrawn and frustrated he's become. And Lila is never far from his thoughts...The Element Games are a way of maintaining a show of peace between the the three neighboring countries of Arnes, Vesk, and Faro. Twelve magicians are entered, one of which is Captain Alucard Emery, which is how Lila ends up in London again. This book takes a while to really get going, but looking back, I think the pacing of the story was good. There's no way I would have gotten such a good read and understanding of Lila's character, and Kell's character, had the author not spent so much time crafting them in their separate worlds for so long in the first half.The second half is all about the Element Games. I will shut my mouth about the Element Games because there is so much craziness surrounding the Games! Let's just say that Lila plays a huge part in the Games, as does Kell, and Alucard. And none of them know each other in the Games (you where masks). There is this subplot in the book that is threaded throughout the story. Its chapters are never more than three or four pages long, so you could ALMOST skip them if you wanted (you should not)... so the subplot seems insignificant but it EXPLODES at the ending of the book. Very well done by Schwab, how she set that up.As always, Schwab does an amazing job with the world-building. I've not read a fiction book with a concept like this one! I mentioned that I liked how Schwab digs deep into Kell - and all of her characters. She also did an excellent job with the story's pacing and structure! Setting up the big showdown in book three was done very sneakily and precisely. I love Kell! He's easily my favorite character of the book (Rhy is cool too... and Alucard... Lila grew on me). He's so troubled and lonely and frustrated, and he feels trapped in the palace, especially since the king, queen, and many of the Arnes people don't trust him anymore (despite him saving everyone's lives in A Darker Shade of Magic). Schwab fleshes out Kell even more than she did in book one, and I think I love him even more.Lila grew on me in this book! I didn't quite like her in A Darker Shade of Magic (nor did I hate her!), but I really liked her in this book. I think I understand her better. Same with Rhy - I can't remember how I felt about him in book one, but I liked him a lot in this book. And our newest important character, Alucard Emery. He's an enigma! We still don't know enough about him BUT we learn some pretty important tidbits and I am intrigued! I like him so far. In terms of the romance... well, the thing is, Kell and Lila aren't physically in the same space for the majority of this book. BUT, several solid things happen, in terms of the romance, and that's enough for me to be very satisfied with the romance. There is also a second (separate) ship in the book, and I can't wait to see where that one goes. Honestly I can't wait to see where the entire book three goes. The ending of this book is SO PAINFUL. I was in shock for at least a minute - you'll expect what happens by the time you get to the climax, but you don't want it to happen. The "villainous" part of this book sneaks up on you, and it strikes like a cobra. Suffice it to say, book three could not come fast enough. What I Did Not Like:I'm taking off 0.5 star - and rounding down - because of the cruel cliffhanger ending! I hate cliffhangers and I especially hate it when they break my heart soooo, I knocked off a star (technically a half-star, but I'm rounding down too). Don't mind me. Would I Recommend It:I LOVED this book, people. Despite the slow first half, despite the cliffhanger ending, this sequel does not disappoint. Schwab's writing, world-building, plot structure, and character development have flourished from A Darker Shade of Magic, and I'd say this book is at least as good as its predecessor. I am excited (and terrified) to read book three!Rating:4.5 stars -> rounded down to 4 stars. Cruel ending is cruel! I really did enjoy this book though. Unfortunately now I must wait in agony for the third book! It sucks when you're so invested in a story - but it's quite magical too! Too bad the wait seems to long, for a resolution. The shadows really gathered, in this book.Pre-read squees:Friends, I now have this book. And it is, well, LARGE. O_O Thank you, Tor!
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  • Katerina Kondrenko
    November 18, 2015
    10 out of 10 Ревью в моем блоге/This review on my blogLiving A Thousand Lives (please use Chrome/Yandex browser or Android/IOS to see the page; otherwise, spoiler-tags I use to make my post compact may not work)Short-Soundtrack:Andrew Belle feat. Erin McCarley – In My Veins IAMX – MercyLudovico Einaudi – RunGenre: high-fantasy with historical elements, upper-YAStuff: magic, parallel worldsFail: inconsistency in few momentsWOW: plot-structure, characters, adventuresPOV: 3rd-person, multiLove-Geo 10 out of 10 Ревью в моем блоге/This review on my blogLiving A Thousand Lives (please use Chrome/Yandex browser or Android/IOS to see the page; otherwise, spoiler-tags I use to make my post compact may not work)Short-Soundtrack:Andrew Belle feat. Erin McCarley – In My Veins IAMX – MercyLudovico Einaudi – RunGenre: high-fantasy with historical elements, upper-YAStuff: magic, parallel worldsFail: inconsistency in few momentsWOW: plot-structure, characters, adventuresPOV: 3rd-person, multiLove-Geometry: zeroQuote-Core: "Run. Run home. Run. Run home. Run."First of all, thank you my friends (Nastassja, Julia and Vera) for being with me during this emotional torture, that's awesome feeling when you can cry or scream while someone shares your joy and pain and... We are like Kell and Rhy on that matter) And I'm happy to have you girls.Now to the book which wasn't that long and we spent together a few days only, but it feels like one hell of a journey.This review is a mix of feelings without major spoilers but with a few hints. I'd love to be more reasonable, but I spent my day re-reading some moments and listening to sad-sad music just to get all the emotions out of my system; and it didn't help, they are too deep inside. I've started another book and continue thinking about this one! Crazy me. So let's have what we have.I've quite a story with ADSOM . It wasn't love from the first sight, but after re-reading some parts of A Darker Shade of Magic I was captured, enchanted (when I re-read the book now (oh yeah, I do it), it seems to me even better). Maybe it happened because I already knew everything I had to forget about details and simple enjoy the pacing? Or I grew and my tastes grew? Have no idea. But with AGoS I had no problems at all. I mean, the world was already build, characters were introduced and wheel was actively spinning. There were new heroes, places, enemies and allies, but this time they were our guests and we were their hosts. Next plus of the book is its plot's structure: logical, elegant and intriguing. There are several blocks with different POV's and White London's special news, those would make your tension stronger and harder with every paragraph. Chapters begin and end with very accurate emphases, and what lies in between is full of questions, answers, magic and serious topics. Yes, serious topics. The story will make you think about many things: freedom, family, friendship, love, duty, the way one is living his life, what's enough to be happy with and with what you can be easily ruined. Also you'll see that every character has his or her own agenda and you can call no one evil or bad (even pore antagonists), 'cause each of them has reasons and these reasons are quite understandable. It's all about complicated morality.Writing style. I was crying on simple moments, was genuinely laughing at banters, was on fire after kissing-scenes (especially after M/M one, which is new to me), had been moved, touched and shattered not once. Schwab was turning me inside out and outside in as if I was the Kell's coat and every time she was finding new sides of my inner self.Speaking of writing, I have to express my love for Arnesian. I always read Arnesian lines out loud. Such a beautiful sound! Victoria, you made up an awesome language.Plot. Multifaceted, has its twists and holes (unfortunately). Different timelines and places are entwined into a tragically beautiful picture. There is a magician tournament, with awesome elemental battles! Key-scenes are on the right places, there are rooms for many kind of emotions: fear, sorrow, anger, tenderness, rage, piece... I love how the story was told, my only issues are:a) Rhy and Kell's bond (it wasn't thought out well, some feels they shared while some didn't (even those they previously did));b) A few Lila's acts (especially her Celaena Sardotien's attitude in a certain scene);c) Rhy/Kell/Alucard's history. Just one question: is that it? No, really? Exile for a broken heart? I can't process it, sorry. I hope (and feel) there are more secret reasons.Aside that, I have no other pretensions.Characters. I started feel them and for them. Kell and Rhy are my favorites even among favorites, I love to watch over their romantic-lives, brotherly ship, personal demons, common problems and so on. And they are bound. What can be better than your favs having a strong connection?)Kell “Why am I the only one in this fucking world to be held accountable for my actions?” by YumenonazoOh, how I sympathize with this boy. He was repeating that Maxim and Emira consider him as their property while they were only kind to him and treated Kell as their own son during the first book. Until the ending. And until AGoS . Then I saw, Kell was totally right. How painful it must be: to have no real family and be betrayed by those you loved and believed to, to get that you is not a person but a power for them (and have hope for a contrary all the same): being able to travel between worlds and have no opportunity to see even yours: to be feared of, lonely... to make a million sacrifices and still be in debt for nothing. If Kell won't get his HEA, the world may go and fuck itself.Delilah Bard "I am a thief and a pirate and a traveler. I have set foot in three different worlds, and lived. I have shed the blood of royals and held magic in my hands." by Victoria YingToo arrogant. Over-badass. Yep, suchlike thing does exist and it’s not always good. She’s stubborn, tough, reckless and sharp, but I see her heart — it’s vulnerable and full of longing. Her life was awful: no mother, an alcoholic of a father, dark streets, merciless cold, cruel fights, endless surviving. How one after so many years among violence and filth can open her heart and allow herself to believe, to care, to love? Her showing-off is a defending mechanism, no less. I like when she takes the risk and just follows her feelings (and I'm talking not of her escapades, I'm talking about a dress, girlish jealousy and what followed =)).Rhy Maresh “Who needs magic when you look this good?” by Victoria YingAnd that is Rhy’s defending mechanism, but since in  AGoS he has his POV, we have a chance to see through it. "It was a chance for Rhy to shine, not only as a jewel, but as a sword. He had always been a symbol of wealth. He wanted to be a symbol of power. Magic was power, of course, but it wasn’t the only kind. Rhy told himself he could still be strong without it. He's not that simple playful prince, my babe Rhy, who's speaking so many languages and that, my friends, is strikingly sexy. He's fully aware of his pros and cons: he won't be a great magician, but he'll find other way to become a great monarch. Though it's hard, being a future king in the world which is ruled my magic and have no access to resource (okay, he has, but his abilities are laughable). It's not his fault, but still it's his responsibility to handle it somehow. How Rhy would keep his people safe? Would someone respect a man who can lit the fire only by using matches? He believes so. But has doubts. And all might be good if it was his only concern. “He was immortal.And he hated it.And he hated that he hated it. Hated that he’d become the thing he never wanted to be, a burden to his brother, a source of pain and suffering, a prison. Hated that if he’d had a choice, he would have said no. Hated that he was grateful he hadn’t had a choice, because he wanted to live, even if he didn’t deserve to.” To be a shitty magician is one thing, to die and be brought back to know that you life isn't fully yours anymore is another. And that links up with other topic I want to discuss:Kell and Rhy “There’s no way I’m facing them on my own.”“Which one are you afraid of? Lord Sol-in-Ar?”“Cora.”“The Veskan princess?” Kell laughed. “She’s just a child.”“She was just a child—and a nightmarish one at that—but I’ve heard she’s grown into something truly fearsome.”Kell shook his head. “Come on, then,” he said, slinging his arm around the prince’s shoulder. “I’ll defend you.”“My hero.” by Victoria YingAren't they cute together? True bros. But now they are more than brothers, they share a life and this life isn't Rhy's. Both suffer from it, both try to adjust and support each other, time after time. But it's hard. But they fight. And sometimes they fight each other.Every conversation about this theme between Rhy and Kell makes my eyes watering. I don't know what it's like to have so little privacy with your feels, to be responsible for other person's pain, to receive his. At first, I thought they started secretly hate each other, it looked like this. But then I got that it was love mixed up with guilt.Alucard Emery “I’ll tell you what,” he said, when it was clear she wouldn’t follow him down that path. “Spend the nights with me, and I’ll help improve your tongue.” by Victoria YingHe's always like that. Flirting his way through life. Doesn't he remind you of someone? Me too, but we save it for later. So, Alucard... he's a new character, a privateer and captain of a Night Spire ship (amazing vessel which I hope someone would paint one day). The man has a power other three elements and he's witty as hell, that's why it's such a pleasure to read his banters with Lila. “What are you supposed to be?” she asked in Arnesian. “A fish?”Alucard made a noise of mock affront. “Obviously,” he said, brandishing the helmet, “I’m a dragon.”“Wouldn’t it make more sense for you to be a fish?” challenged Lila. “After all, you do live on the sea, and you are rather slippery, and—”“I’m a dragon,” he interjected. “You’re just not being very imaginative.” I was shipping them once, I admit. There is a sparkle, but what is a single sparkle against flame?Alucard and Rhy Alucard snaked an arm possessively around his shoulders and brought his lips to the prince’s neck, just below his ear. Rhy actually shivered.“You are far too familiar with your prince,” he warned.“So you confess it, then?” His brushed his lips against Rhy’s throat. “That you are mine.” by marty-mc Now you know whom reminded me Alucard. I never thought these two can be so sexy together (actually I thought they are so alike that their meet would end with a fight for a title 'the most handsome man in the room'), Victoria turned my world upside down with her sensual writing. I re-read A&R part for 3282927 times and will do it again. I'd call Rhy and Alucard my OTP, but I have to favorite ships (Sorry, three! Night Spire is counted too). And second is...Lila and Kell “He came to me, after you were gone. Master Kell.”Lila’s eyes widened. “What for?”“To pay the debt for your clothes.”Her mood darkened. “I can pay my own debts,” she snapped, “and Kell knows it.”Calla smiled. “That is what I told him. And he went away. But a week later, he came back, and made the same offer. He comes every week.”“Bastard,” mumbled Lila, but the merchant shook her head.“Don’t you see?” said Calla. “He wasn’t coming to pay your debt. He was coming to see if you’d returned to pay it yourself.” by Ana-DanteI started cry at this scene. Not because it's sad, but because of tension. They missed each other so much, they tried to forget, to live without looking back and they failed. My heart was melting and aching and pumping. I hated all their he-would-be-angry-with-me and let-her-to-come-first stuff. I need them to run through the city screaming each other's names. But Victoria had different plan for their meet. And you won't be upset)The main intrigue, Not, it's not competitions, you'll see for yourselves what it would be. And how it would end,The ending. Not shocking. I've seen updates and was ready for worst thing. Yes, the final is kinda cliffhanger-ish, but not cruel one. You'll survive.Overall. I can't get over this series! I've started re-read the first book again. I think about AGoS while reading another story. I'm searching for beautiful arts and going to read fanfics! Rhy would call it infatuation. And I agree. Shades of Magic (Оттенки магии):— A Darker Shade of Magic (Темный оттенок магии) #1/3 — A Gathering of Shadows (Шабаш теней) #2/3 — A Conjuring of Light (Магия света) #3/3
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  • Reynita Maharani ★ The Night Reader ★
    December 19, 2016
    I think I'll read it again because I enjoyed the first book and something happened in the second book that shocked me and made me stop reading it. But maybe I was exaggerating that problem. So I'll read it again on 2017.REVIEW TO COME TODAY.** THIS REVIEW CONTAINS MILD SPOILER ** "I do not know why you two are circling each other like stars. it is not my cosmic dance. But I do know that you come asking after one another, when only a few strides and a handful of stairs divide you." the first ti I think I'll read it again because I enjoyed the first book and something happened in the second book that shocked me and made me stop reading it. But maybe I was exaggerating that problem. So I'll read it again on 2017.REVIEW TO COME TODAY.** THIS REVIEW CONTAINS MILD SPOILER ** "I do not know why you two are circling each other like stars. it is not my cosmic dance. But I do know that you come asking after one another, when only a few strides and a handful of stairs divide you." the first time I read this book was a year ago ( I guess it was a year ago ) and I didn't finish it because of something (view spoiler)[ that scene when Alucard kissed Lila and Lila kissed him back and she actually enjoyed the kiss. (hide spoiler)] but then a month ago I decided to read it again because I liked the first book so much ( here's my review about the first book) and maybe I could bear that scene because I've read quite many book since I stopped reading this book. So maybe I could tolerate that scene. so here are the reasons why I didn't like this book : The Story in my opinion the story was so boriiiiiiiiiiiing especially the Element Games. it bored me so much ( it is not a spoiler because the synopsis tells you about this ). I don't know why I didn't like the Element Games and I just didn't care about it so every time the main characters talked about it, which was very often and I was like I mean, the first book was so great and the action scenes were so AAAAAMZING and I had high expectation about this book but I didn't get what I wanted. The main characters talked so much and I desperately needed of action scenes. I NEED FIGHT SCENES. JUST ANYTHING EXCEPT TALKING. TALKING AND TALKING and to be honest, I skimmed reading it and I rarely do that. I just do that when the book is boring and I want to read it quickly so it can be over and I just wanted to finish reading it. The Pacing I love slow pacing books because that way I can get to know the characters but this book is SO SLOW and it bored me so much. I made myself to continue reading it and even when I reached page 297, the Element Games still hadn't started and I began skimmed it because I just couldn't wait anymore and I just wanted to finish it as fast as possible. So I don't know what page the Element Games is started and we suppose to feel relax and happy when we read, don't we? and mostly I felt like this when I read this book I just couldn't be patient. I just couldn't. The Characters I didn't like Lila, she was really annoying. she would do everything just to get what she wanted. I didn't have a problem if she didn't hurt anybody to get what she wanted. I don't think I felt like that toward Lila when I read the first book and how could Kell like a girl like her?! honestly, he is too good for Lila. ugh.and now about Rhy and Alucard. I don't have problem with them and Rhy is a funny guy. "Fine," said Rhy. "I'm going out. And when I'm robbed and left in an alley, you can tell our parents what happened. Don't forget to include the part where you stayed home instead of ensuring my safety."and also this Rhy leaned over. "looks like I'm not the one who needs protecting after all. You know ..." He sipped his wine. "it would be an interesting match...."Kell kept his smile fixed. "I will stab you with this pin.""You would suffer.""it would be worth-" He was cut off by the approach of Lord Sol-in-Ar.I just love it when they bicker xD The Romance The romance was so boring. I kept wanting them to be together again but it took them such a long time to get together again. they got together again when I lost my interest in reading this book. ( I don't think it's a spoiler because if you've read the first book then you know that Lila left Kell and Kell saw she was leaving and she was gone to her own her)there was a time when my heart pounded so hard because I was so nervous when they were about to meet but they didn't meet instantly and I got bored and I lost my interest. (view spoiler)[ I skimmed reading it so I think I missed something about this book and I also heard that the romance between Alucard and Rhy is cute and they are cute but I don't think I can say anything about them because I skimmed reading it so I didn't read the part where they met. but I think Rhy and Alucard will be cute couple. They both are funny. (hide spoiler)] Will I Read The Next Book? I don't know. I don't think I'll read the next book because I'm not curious how the story ends and I don't really care about it anymore. I only gave this book 3 stars because I quite enjoyed reading it at the beginning and I used to like Kell so much and there was also a scene that I really liked. thank you for reading and liking this review guys. I hope you all have a great day! ❤❤❤
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  • Lena
    February 23, 2017
    I CAN'T I CAN'T I CAN'T I CAN'T I CAN'T I CAN'T I CAN'T I CAN'T I CAN'T I CAN'T I CAN'T I CAN'T I CAN'T I CAN'T I CAN'T I CAN'T
  • Wren | WrensReads
    January 12, 2017
    WrensReads Review:There are spoilers from the previous book in this review...so proceed at your own riskNarrator: Steven Crossley★ ★ ★ ★ ★Narrator: Kate Reading★ ★ ★ ★ ★I LOVE THESE NARRATORS. MOVING ON. I don't know who I love more: Kell? Rhy? Lila? Alucard?Like how can you pick between a one-black-eyed master of magic who travels across worlds, a near-perfect prince who has risen from the dead, a cross-dressing-pirate girl who does impossible things or a ruggedly handsome and mysterious privat WrensReads Review:There are spoilers from the previous book in this review...so proceed at your own riskNarrator: Steven Crossley★ ★ ★ ★ ★Narrator: Kate Reading★ ★ ★ ★ ★I LOVE THESE NARRATORS. MOVING ON. I don't know who I love more: Kell? Rhy? Lila? Alucard?Like how can you pick between a one-black-eyed master of magic who travels across worlds, a near-perfect prince who has risen from the dead, a cross-dressing-pirate girl who does impossible things or a ruggedly handsome and mysterious privateer who never lets anyone in on his master plan?I feel as if the first book built up to this one, and this one is building up to the next one. A book series that has built such depth to its characters and has had such care with its world and has kept my attention from the first page is a book that I will forever rave about to anyone who has it. If I saw you in the park reading this, I would sit down next to you and talk to you about how much we both love this book because you will love this book and its series.This one is centered around a game against magicians. Different countries (Red London) all come together and they have their best magicians play against each other to see who the victor is. It's written in such wonder detail and woven in such a delicate way that you won't be able to stop reading. This is the type of book that leaves you thinking about it and distracting you through out the day.It isn't just the magic that will draw you in though. The characters are very human. They all have their flaws and our main men, Kell and Rhy, really struggle with the aftermath of the last book. Kell feels like he is in a cage and Rhy feels like a burden to his brother. Their Rhy's parents really give Kell a hard time and there is just such a build up to the explosion that is the end of this book.WARNING: It is a cliff hanger, and it will not be okay.But it's okay kind of because we get more pirates. We get more cross-dressing. We get lots of chemistry between all four of the characters. We get equality. We get raw action. We get it all. The only thing this book needed was.. nope, it had everything I ever wanted in more in this book. Now to wait a month for the already pre-ordered third book...WAIT, A TELEVISION SHOW ADAPTION?That makes me so incredibly happy yet nervous, but mostly happy because of some of the tweets V.E. Schwab said.Seriously. I am here b/c you are here. I get to keep writing b/c you keep reading. I get to try new things b/c you believe in me.— Victoria Schwab (@veschwab) February 3, 2016I know readers have bothhope and fear when it comes to adaptation, so let me say: A DARKER SHADE OF MAGIC will be done right, or not at all. — Victoria Schwab (@veschwab) February 3, 2016I can say that because my producer and I have been aligned on that at every. single. stage.— Victoria Schwab (@veschwab) February 3, 2016Also, the fact we have the opportunity to adapt the ADSOM for TV, where we can fully explore the worlds and stories, makes my heart sing. — Victoria Schwab (@veschwab) February 3, 2016No matter what happens, I am just clinging to the idea of this pilot getting cast so I can take a photo with Kell and Rhy and Lila. — Victoria Schwab (@veschwab) February 3, 2016EEEEEEEEEK!WrensReads | Twitter | Instagram
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  • Warda
    April 21, 2015
    Putting this book down for now. Not because I'm not enjoying it. But I'm in a shitty slump that's completely hindering my reading experience when it comes to this book and I can't ruin it for myself. Hoping to pick it back up soon!So, this book was all kinds of epicness and amazingness! I'm so in love with this series, it hurts! Delilah Bard is my favourite female character. Ever. I miss the world and the characters and I want to reread it already!!This book was like crack cocaine. It was addict Putting this book down for now. Not because I'm not enjoying it. But I'm in a shitty slump that's completely hindering my reading experience when it comes to this book and I can't ruin it for myself. Hoping to pick it back up soon!So, this book was all kinds of epicness and amazingness! I'm so in love with this series, it hurts! Delilah Bard is my favourite female character. Ever. I miss the world and the characters and I want to reread it already!!This book was like crack cocaine. It was addictive in the best possible way! The writing was impeccable. I could FEEL every emotion of the characters. The build up throughout the story was done so well. It was tense, I was crazy nervous at times to read on, but excited. It was absolutely enticing, immersive and so beautifully crafted. The magic system is so believable! (Am I the only one whilst reading thought they could summon the magic the way the characters did?!) The world building was so imaginative and everything just made sense and clicked. My soul was bound to that book! The plot was unpredictable, multifaceted. The characters, as well as the side characters, are fantastic and flawed and weird with intriguing personalities. I need them in my life! I love how we saw them struggle and come to terms with themselves after the aftermath of the last book and trying to figure life out. It added so much depth to their overall story arc.As painful as the ending was I'm dying to see how the next instalment goes. I don't think Schwab will have any qualms when it comes to hurting her characters and I love that but my anxiety can't handle it! I need a happy ending - I don't care how cliche that is. And I NEED the third book like I need air! I hope the wait isn't too long.
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  • Mary ~Ravager of Tomes~
    November 29, 2015
    Here we are again with 3 stars. I keep wanting to reason with myself that this book deserves both a higher and a lower rating... I guess I am going to have to settle with 3 stars. There is a great amount of potential in this series. Schwab's writing style is delicious to read, I mean she really knows how to paint a picture for her audience. Her writing style alone accounts for at least 1.5 stars of my rating. I think my main problem is, even though I like some of the characters present here, I d Here we are again with 3 stars. I keep wanting to reason with myself that this book deserves both a higher and a lower rating... I guess I am going to have to settle with 3 stars. There is a great amount of potential in this series. Schwab's writing style is delicious to read, I mean she really knows how to paint a picture for her audience. Her writing style alone accounts for at least 1.5 stars of my rating. I think my main problem is, even though I like some of the characters present here, I don't really care which way this story ends up going. I'm not invested in any of my speculations. There were definitely some enjoyable moments here, especially near the middle/end of the book, but it wasn't enough to really salvage my detachment.Overall I would say this series has been better than your average YA for sure. If anything you've got a writer who takes her craft very seriously. But the spark is missing. I will definitely be completing this series when it finishes in 2017, because I have a favorite & I wanna know how their story ends. *Note: I would not recommend listening to this book in audio form. I did so only because I was trying to get through it quickly for my book club deadline, but the narrators for this installment left a lot to be desired.*
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  • Cait • A Page with a View
    January 24, 2016
    I was a bit more into the first book's story, but I loved all of the characters here SO MUCH. Oh my goodness Lila is so badass and seriously one of my favorite characters ever. She’s a crossdressing pirate/thief who sings her own theme song and fights for the thrill of it. This book is totally worth reading just for the flawed, amazing characters alone. I don’t want to say too much because anything about this plot would kind of ruin the first book if people haven’t read that.Things that were awe I was a bit more into the first book's story, but I loved all of the characters here SO MUCH. Oh my goodness Lila is so badass and seriously one of my favorite characters ever. She’s a crossdressing pirate/thief who sings her own theme song and fights for the thrill of it. This book is totally worth reading just for the flawed, amazing characters alone. I don’t want to say too much because anything about this plot would kind of ruin the first book if people haven’t read that.Things that were awesome:- The detailed worldbuilding & solid writing- New characters like Alucard Emery!- The beginning and last 25% of the story- The Triwizard Tournament Essen Tasch- Delilah freaking Bard- AWESOME CLIFFHANGER ENDING (I like them if they're done well)- every single one of these precious characters
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  • Sarah (Starry Night Reader)
    November 14, 2015
    More like 4.5Well, Victoria Schwab has done it again... Did I have any doubt that I would love this book? No, not really. But part of me worried a little. I think I've become a much more critical/picky reader overall since I read the first book in this series and I was worried that I couldn't be THAT good like I remembered.. But I should never have doubted!! Amazing writing, phenomenal world-building, spectacular characters... This series has it all!I could gush about the the unique and interest More like 4.5Well, Victoria Schwab has done it again... Did I have any doubt that I would love this book? No, not really. But part of me worried a little. I think I've become a much more critical/picky reader overall since I read the first book in this series and I was worried that I couldn't be THAT good like I remembered.. But I should never have doubted!! Amazing writing, phenomenal world-building, spectacular characters... This series has it all!I could gush about the the unique and interesting world Victoria Schwab has created in this series, but I already did that in my review of the first book. The thing I really loved about the first book was the way we jumped around to all these different Londons- each one so vivid and immersive- it kept the book exciting and interesting and new. In this book, we spend pretty much all of our time in Red London (although we do explore Red London and the Arnesian empire a bit more). The entire plot is essentially build up for these Elemental Games that occur in the last 100 pages. So basically 400 pages of build up! Yes, this book was slower but...That left a lot more room for character development and relationships. We are introduced to a new character in this book, and his name is Alucard. At first, I was looking at Alucard all squinty eyed like "who are you, new character, and how dare you interact with my babies?!" But he grew on me. I was really intrigued by him, he seemed mysterious, and he surprised me in a few ways. “I'm sorry." He sounded so...earnest, which made Lila instantly suspicious. Alucard was many things, but genuine wasn't usually one of them."For growing on me?" she asked.He shook his head. "For whatever happened to you. For whoever hurt you so deeply that you see things like friends and fondness as weapons instead of shields.” Lila was definitely my favorite character in the first book. This is a quote from my review of the first book:"an adventurer at heart who goes looking for trouble constantly. She's tough, determined, hilarious. Although I admit, there were moments I wanted to scream WHY LILA?!?! when she would do something stupid... For me, Lila breathed life into the story, because Kell was so damn serious all of the time." This book took my feelings about Lila and multiplied them times 148737622. Her recklessness and need for adventure bordered on annoying and I found myself screaming WHY LILA and NO LILA more times than I want to admit. Lila is learning more about who she is and what she's capable of in this new London where she feels anything is possible, and it gives her a sense of invincibility, which causes her to do some stupid things. I'm honestly just waiting for Lila to screw up big time, because it seems as if everything comes so easily for her, and she can find her way out of any sticky situation. “Kell would say it was impossible. What a useless word, in a world with magic.” Kell and Rhy are struggling to learn how to deal with their new magical bond. But my heart really broke for Kell. D: Everyone blames Kell for what happened at the end of the last book and he's left feeling more alienated and alone than ever before. Both Kell and Rhy harbor a lot of regret about their mistakes and the danger they put themselves and their kingdom in, but Kell's heart is so loyal despite the way he's treated just... Ugh. *hugs Kell* I hope to finally learn answers about Kell's past, parents, ect in the third book..And dear lord that ending... This book ends on such a cliffhanger and I neeeeeed to know what happens. Are my babies ok?! What's gonna happen?!?! I'm so scared. And I have to wait a whole year to find out?!Overall, an amazing and satisfactory sequel!
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  • Cookie
    February 10, 2014
    As of today, Feb. 26, I have finished this book. 4 stars. I liked it but it was slow, a pacing that I am not good with. It got interesting around 60%, which was far into the book. And it was the last few chapters that really got me into it. Still, I'm not disappointed.The ending was not like ADSOM. Because that ending was okay, it made me want this sequel, but it wasn't a cliff hanger. This one tested me. This one hurt two of the characters I love. This one wasn't okay. I don't know what to do n As of today, Feb. 26, I have finished this book. 4 stars. I liked it but it was slow, a pacing that I am not good with. It got interesting around 60%, which was far into the book. And it was the last few chapters that really got me into it. Still, I'm not disappointed.The ending was not like ADSOM. Because that ending was okay, it made me want this sequel, but it wasn't a cliff hanger. This one tested me. This one hurt two of the characters I love. This one wasn't okay. I don't know what to do now. -----As of today--Jan. 22--there are 31 more days until this release.And since I have no idea if you've seen the latest teasers or not, here you go:“Kell was pressing his hands to his chest and Rhy watched, horrified and helpless, as blood poured between his brother's fingers.”&source-------But guys, she keeps teasing us with teasers on twitter and... just how am I going to survive this? HOW? February IS SO FAR AWAY.I MEANLOOK AT THESE:“I’m the strongest magician in the Arnesian empire, possibly in the world—”“Careful, Kell, your ego is showing.” “Your features are . . . unique.”Kell frowned. “Are you calling me ugly?”Rhy snorted. “We both know you’re the prettiest boy at the ball.”Kell tipped his forehead against hers.“You could just...” he whispered, “stay.”“Or you could go...” she countered, “with me.” “She sank her teeth into his bottom lip, drawing blood, and gave a wicked laugh, and still he kissed her.”gosh. GOSH.SAVE ME.-----512 beautiful pages.(I just read the blurb again and omgomgomgomgomgomgomg I need this so badly)-----OH MY GOOOOOOD(the hands freak me the fuck out and the lack of black london is a bit ??? BUT IM STILL SO HYPED)is it bad that i'm ready to attack anyone who has given it a 1-star rating right now i mean i know i gave it 5 but she's like my favourite author i think it's impossible for me to give her anything but a 5.-----(already giving this a 5 stars because it's Victoria Schwab and let's be real here she's like a literary queen)-A Darker Shade of Magic may not have ended with a torturous ending... but that doesn't mean I don't want this desperately.Because I do--I really, really, really do.
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