Sunday, June 09, 2019

REVIEW: A Darker Shade of Magic (Shades of Magic #1) by V.E. Schwab

A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab
My Rating: ★★★★★★★★★★

Kell is one of a dying breed—an Antari magician with the rare ability to travel between parallel Londons. There's Red London with it's opulence and benevolent rulers—its magic in a healthy balance. Grey London contains no magic at all, and most people aren't even aware of its existence. In White London, magic is used to control, and power is seized and stolen by power-hungry rulers. And finally Black London, which has long since fallen into oblivion, where magic rules, corrupts, and overtakes. Intrigued yet?

The doors between the worlds are sealed and only Antari can travel through, so when Kell inadvertently smuggles a forbidden item back into Red London, some precarious magic is released, and he suddenly becomes a hunted man. On escaping to Grey London, Kell meets a street smart thief named Delilah Bard, who's determined to help and is ready for a proper adventure. But now, the wild, treacherous magic is leeching through Red London, seeping into all corners... and if Kell and Lila plan to stop it, they must first save themselves!

A Darker Shade of Magic is the first book in the Shades of Magic trilogy. It falls into what's called Gaslamp Fantasy—a magical version of the 19th century. Think Steampunk's more magically-inclined relative... The name was new to me too so I googled it. There was little to no romance here, which I appreciated since I don't like that swooning ooey gooey stuff. ;)

But WOW! This was a great read I had a hard time putting down! The magic, the parallel Londons, the Victorian time period... thieves, royalty, and a kickass female lead! Awesome sauce! I fell in love with Lila! “I’d rather die on an adventure than live standing still.” Words to live by girl... words to live by! <3 I'm anxiously looking forward to reading A Gathering of Shadows, the next in the series, which I actually started before I even completed this review! LOL

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Tuesday, June 04, 2019

REVIEW: Claimed (Servants of Fate #2) by Sarah Fine

Claimed by Sarah Fine
My Rating: ★★★★★★☆☆☆☆

Claimed is the second book in the Servants of Fate trilogy and picks up pretty much right where Marked leaves off. Here, we move to Galena and Dec as the main characters, instead of Eli and Cacia.

While I thought Marked was unique and interesting in it's world building, the magic had worn off by the time I got to book 2. I'm not much into romance and this one was just a bit too much for me. Parts of the story seemed forced, and while I found it a bit tedious at times, I finished reading it nonetheless, simply because there was enough action going on to keep me entertained.

However, I'm not into it enough to want to read the final book... or am I? Honestly, I've got too many other good books waiting here for me to waste my time on mediocre. Sorry Ms. Fine, but your work just isn't doing it for me.

That said, this got lots of good reviews, and those who like a lot of romance in their stories may like it better than I did.

Thank you to NetGalley and 47North for providing me with an advanced reading copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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