Synopsis from Edelweiss:
Four months have passed since the mysterious 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 now without his trade as a smuggler, 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 extravagent 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.
About: A Gathering of Shadows is a young adult fantasy novel written by V. E. Schwab. It was published on 1/17/17 by Tor Books, an imprint of Macmillan, 512 pages. The genres are fantasy, magic, young adult, and fiction. There are 3 books to this series: book 1 is called A Darker Shade of Magic, book 2 is called A Gathering of Shadows, and book 3 is called A Conjuring of Light. According to the publisher’s website, “Tor.com is a site for science fiction, fantasy, and all the things that interest SF and fantasy readers. It publishes original fiction, art, and commentary on science fiction and related subjects by a wide range of writers from all corners of the field; both professionals working in the genres and fans. Its aim is to provoke, encourage, and enable interesting and rewarding conversations with and between its readers.” Please see below for more information about the author and publisher.
My Experience: I started reading A Gathering of Shadows on 7/16/17 and finished it on 7/29/17. I continue buddy reading this series with Namitha @ Teen Memoir. We read book 1 together and if you are interested, click HERE to see my review and HERE for TeenMemoir’s. Due to scheduling, we ended up finishing this book at different times. I will post a link here when she has her review up for this book. I enjoyed reading this book. It’s much longer and there is a lot going on. I’m starting to like reading books in the third person point of view because I get to have glimpses into everyone’s feelings and experiences. I love that this book started out with Lila because I couldn’t get enough of her in book 1. She’s definitely reckless. I like her attitude in life, especially when she’s caught but instead of begging to have the opportunity for her to take part in, she challenges the other person that if he turns her in, the consequences will be far worse.
“What a waste of life to stand around and think so much on every little thing. What did it matter why she wanted… She simply did.” p260
In this book, readers will follow Lila as she finally be able to live her dream of being on a ship at sea. She’s on her own in Red London and it’s no surprise that she able to find her way on board a ship. At sea, she learns magic and awoken the mystery inside of her. Four months later, the ship, Night Spire, comes back to Red London and just in time for Is Essen Tasch (The Element Games), an international tournament between 3 empires. Alucard Emery is a mysterious Captain aboard the Night Spire. Kell is miserable in this book. What he did at the end of the first book is not being rewarded but instead being blamed and punished. He is unable to live his life because it affects Rhy Marish, prince of Red London. Rhy hosts the Essen Tasch and found a way for Kell to compete, a little distraction to his depressing life. The game is exciting to read. There are romances in this book, one unexpected and the other one is short lived. Kell’s mystery background is still a mystery in this book. The surprise with White London is not very interesting to read for me but it’s definitely a build up for book 3. I’m surprised Kell made that mistake in the end because he seems smarter than that, however, with King & Queen Marish’s wretched attitude towards him, I can understand how lonely and vulnerable he becomes and a simple mistake like that can occur.
“everyone talks about the unknown like it’s some big scary thing, but it’s the familiar that’s always bothered me. It’s heavy, builds up around you like rocks, until it’s walls and a ceiling and a cell.” p398
This book is a close 5 stars read for me. There were some chapters I find dull, mostly about White London. There weren’t a lot of information on Ojka. I was hoping to learn more about Kell’s background in this book but he’s as mysterious as before. I’m glad Lila explore herself even though she’s no closer in figuring out who she is or what she is. I like Calla and her willingness to help, but I wonder why she keeps quiet and continue help no questions asked. I like the witty banter between Alucard and Lila. I am disappointed for the lack of background stories on many characters but I still find myself reading on because the mystery of who Alucard is and the danger of the Essen Tasch seems exciting especially when there are disguises among the true participants. I was hoping something will happen with Ned but he plays it safe in this book. Overall, this book is still a great read and I do recommend everyone to read this book.
Pro: actions, adventures, magic, challenges, cover
Con: lack of background for many characters,
I rate it 4.5 stars!
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About the Author:
Victoria is the product of a British mother, a Beverly Hills father, and a southern upbringing. Because of this, she has been known to say “tom-ah-toes,” “like,” and “y’all.”
She also tells stories. She loves fairy tales, and folklore, and stories that make her wonder if the world is really as it seems.
Victoria has stated that books published under V.E. Schwab are adult releases and those under Victoria Schwab are YA.
(Photo & info obtained from Goodreads).
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***Disclaimer: I bought this book with my own money and my opinions are honest.