Author: V.E. Schwab
Series: Shades of Magic #1
Publisher: Tor Books
Release Date: February 24, 2015
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 a 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 teacher lurks at every turn. To save all of the worlds, they’ll first need to stay alive.
Before I started this book, I knew that there was a lot of hype surrounding it. Everyone seems to love this book and the world that Schwab created. That’s probably why I went into this book with really high expectations. Sadly, I was let down. I blame the hype.
- Kell’s jacket. Who wouldn’t want a multi-sided jacket that you could store like an infinite amount of things in??
- The idea of multiple Londons. Schwab’s world-building was literally great, and I couldn’t get enough of it.
- Lila-she’s such a badass character. I think she was actually my favorite character of the whole story.
- Schwab’s writing style, which was so awesome. It was interesting, because I’m usually drawn to really lyrical writing, but I appreciated how Schwab didn’t really fluff things up.
- I found it… boring. I felt like nothing was really going on a lot of the time, which led me to have trouble pushing through the book. The pacing was just incredibly slow for me.
- When events did happen, I knew they were going to happen before they did. That’s right. I found the book predictable… which was sad.
- I didn’t ship the possibility of a romance. I know that many people who have read this book ship Kell and Lila with all their hearts, but I didn’t really care for the two of them together.