Book Review: A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab

Author: V.E. Schwab
Genre: Fantasy
Pages: 398
Related Words: magic, parallel dimensions, dark, evil
Rating: 4/5

Welcome to Grey London, dirty and boring, without any magic, with one mad king– GeorgeIII. Then there is Red London, where life and magic are revered, and darkerWhite London, a city slowly being drained through magical war, down to its very bones. And once upon a time, Black London… but no one speaks of that now. 

Officially, Kell is the Red Traveler– one of the last magicians who can travel between the worlds– acting as ambassador and messenger between the Londons, in service of the Maresh empire. Unofficially, he’s a smuggler, which is a dangerous hobby for him to have– as provided when Kell stumbles into a setup with a forbidden token from Black London. 

Fleeing into Grey London, Kell runs afoul of Delilah Bard, a cutpurse with lofty aspirations, who first robs him, then saves him from a dangerous enemy, and the forces Kell to spirt her to another world for a proper adventure.

But perilous magic is afoot, and treachery lurks at every turn. To save all of the worlds, they’ll first need to stay alive.


General Overview (Without Spoilers)

A Darker Shade of Magic was an amazing read and very captivating. It has a very unique story line and plot, and its something that I’ve never read before.

The book follows these to characters Kell and Lila as they try to set things right with the dangerous object that they have. They want to get rid of it, but in the process, they create chaos and have to get through many obstacles before they can achieve their goal.

The characters were amazingly written, especially Lila, who you could see had her flaws. She wasn’t forced into this strong female role as much as I have seen other authors have tried to force their own characters, and I really liked that. Lila wasn’t perfect and she wasn’t this overpowered character that could solve every problem with a wave of her hand. She was irritating and annoying at times, and that was what I loved about her.

Kell was also beautifully written. You could see his character developing as the story progressed. I don’t want to say anything more incase it spoils the book, but I really liked how everything was written.

The only problem I had with this book was the ending. It felt really rushed and it wasn’t as spectacular as I would have imagined the ending to be. I was hoping for something a little more, and I hope that Schwab will do that in the next two books of this series.




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