Review: A Conjuring of Light by V. E. Schwab


Author: V. E. Schwab

Publisher: Titan

Release Date: February 2017

Genre: YA Fantasy, Romance

Pages: 666

The precarious equilibrium among the four Londons has reached its breaking point. Once brimming with the red vivacity of magic, darkness casts a shadow over the Maresh Empire, leaving a space for another London to rise. Kell – once assumed to be the last surviving Antari – begins to waver under the pressure of competing loyalties. Lila Bard, once a commonplace – but never a common – thief, has survived and flourished through a series of magical trials. But now she must learn to control the magic, before it bleeds her dry.

Meanwhile, the disgraced Captain Alucard Emery and the Night Spire crew are attempting a race against time to acquire the impossible, as an ancient enemy returns to claim a crown and a fallen hero is desperate to save a decaying world.

I loved the first two books in this series. I thought they were a fantastic breath of fresh air. So naturally, I didn’t want the trilogy to end anytime soon so I put off reading the undoubtedly epic conclusion for a couple of months – and undoubtedly epic it was.

The cast of characters in this are all so unique and at the same time so likeable. I really enjoyed getting chapters from everyone’s POV. Rhy is such a sweetheart so naturally I ship him and Alucard together. Lila is so badass and such an amazing co-protagonist that I adored reading. Holland was the villain you loved to hate and of course Kell was the awesome Antari who puts his life on the line multiple times to save other people.

There were two particular scenes in A Conjuring of Light that stand out to me now while I’m writing this review. The first was when the river in London turned black thanks to Osaron. I think the description was perfect and it’s rare that I ever felt so transported into the world. Another scene that I loved was (possible spoiler) when Holland was about to be executed and he jumped into the river to kill himself. When Kell jumped in after him I was like yess, save him but then Lila jumped in after them both and I don’t know why but I enjoyed that immensely.

Again, the world-building was on point and Schwab did an incredible job of immersing me as a reader in the world of her four Londons and inside her character’s heads. I’ve recently bought This Savage Song so I cannot wait to get started with that!



Review: A Gathering of Shadows, by V. E. Schwab


Author: V. E. Schwab
Publisher: Titan Books
Release Date: February 23rd 2016
Genre: YA, Fantasy, Romance
Pages: 508
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.

After reading A Darker Shade of Magic, I was incredibly eager to read this one. Oh my god. I loved the first one so much and needed the next ASAP, so I don’t know why it took me so long to read it.

Alas, it is the second book in a trilogy so it was bound to lack plot a little. It’s setting the scene for what I hope is going to be an epic conclusion. It still definitely deserves 5 stars however, because the writing style is gorgeous and the characters are breathtakingly fantastic. Kell, Lila, Rhy … oh what a wonderful set of characters.

I think, though, what I loved most about A Gathering of Shadows was the fabulous world-building of this universe. The Element Games… each individual London being explored with so much more depth. It was such an engaging read and Schwab’s world is a beautiful one to be engrossed in.

“Oh yes, your relationship with Miss Bard is positively ordinary.”
“Be quiet.”
“Crossing worlds, killing royals, saving cities. The marks of every good courtship.”

This is definitely getting 5 stars and cannot wait to read the last one… although it won’t be for a long time as I’m doing the #RamadanReadathon for June. Also, I just found out today that V. E. Schwab is coming to Dublin in Ireland!! I’m so excited!!

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

A Darker Shade final for Irene

Author: V. E. Schwab
Publisher: Titan Books
Release Date: February 27th 2015
Genre: Fantasy, YA
Pages: 384

Kell is one of the last travelers–magicians with a rare, coveted ability to travel between parallel universes connected by one magical city. 

There’s Grey London, dirty and boring, without any magic, and with one mad King–George III. Red London, where life and magic are revered–and where Kell was raised alongside Rhy Maresh, the roguish heir to a flourishing empire. White London–a place where people fight to control magic and the magic fights back, draining the city to its very bones. And once upon a time, there was Black London. But no one speaks of that now.

Officially, Kell is the Red traveler, ambassador of the Maresh empire, carrying the monthly correspondences between the royals of each London. Unofficially, Kell is a smuggler, servicing people willing to pay for even the smallest glimpses of a world they’ll never see. It’s a defiant hobby with dangerous consequences, which Kell is now seeing firsthand.

Fleeing into Grey London, Kell runs into Delilah Bard, a cut-purse with lofty aspirations. She robs him, saves him from a deadly enemy, and finally forces Kell to spirit her to another world for a proper adventure. 

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

I’m just going to say it: HOLY SHIT.

This book was incredible. Here starts my gushing of this… but oh my god. Seriously. A friend of mine lent me the first two books in this series and I took my time starting them. But I regret taking so long, I really wish I had have read this sooner. It’s just amazing!!

Firstly, we’ll start with the characters. Kell, Lila, Rhy…wow. Just wow. They were so unique and had such strong voices and they were so badass and loveable and mysterious and aaaaah!! Everything about this intrigued me so much.

Next, the setting. Having the book set in not just one, but FOUR Londons – was such an amazing idea!! They were SO interesting to read about. So well thought out and well written. I enjoyed this so so so much. The Kings and Queens of each individual London were the best villains too.

And finally, the plot. I love the whole mystery of this. How Kell or Lila didn’t know what the mysterious stone was that linked them to Black London. And learning about them as characters up until they met was so incredibly fascinating!!

I honestly don’t have a bad word to say about this. I cannot wait to read the next two books and everything else Schwab has written!!

5 out of 5 stars and thank you, Lisa!!