Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, Paranormal
There’s no such thing as safe in a city at war, a city overrun with monsters. In this dark urban fantasy from author Victoria Schwab, a young woman and a young man must choose whether to become heroes or villains—and friends or enemies—with the future of their home at stake. The first of two books.
Kate Harker and August Flynn are the heirs to a divided city—a city where the violence has begun to breed actual monsters. All Kate wants is to be as ruthless as her father, who lets the monsters roam free and makes the humans pay for his protection. All August wants is to be human, as good-hearted as his own father, to play a bigger role in protecting the innocent—but he’s one of the monsters. One who can steal a soul with a simple strain of music. When the chance arises to keep an eye on Kate, who’s just been kicked out of her sixth boarding school and returned home, August jumps at it. But Kate discovers August’s secret, and after a failed assassination attempt the pair must flee for their lives.
I was really hesitant going into Victoria Schwab’s latest release and it’s not for the reasons you’re probably thinking. I was hesitant about going in not because of the hype (although that was an issue) but because I had added it to my TBR list simply from the name on the cover. I barely knew what it was about and it certainly wouldn’t have been a book which would have piqued my interest without Schwab’s name on the cover simply because monsters? Seriously?
Despite my doubts I loved it and I think I would have loved it even if I never even knew who Schwab was. It was just a really fantastic read. It was interesting and filled with all these morally questionable characters and a lot of moral questions about what makes a monster? It was just a fascinating look at people with some really great characters in it.
This is a fantastic read but also a bit of a moral question, which I loved because who doesn’t like a book which gets you thinking?
There are two things I loved in this book: the characters and the concept of monsters. I loved how the idea of how the monsters were created and what they represented and I really hope this gets explored more in depth in the next book. It really leads you to question morality and what makes people human. It’s all about right and wrong and how far you can go with testing boundaries before you cross a line. How far is too far? It’s a really interesting concept and I’m sure you’ll be able to say in depth things about this to me once you’ve read the book.
The characters are just fantastic. I loved every single one of them, be they good or bad. I loved that there wasn’t strictly a good or bad character actually. It was more there were those who were morally right than others and then others who had obviously left all sense of morality at the door and I loved it. I loved Sweet August who had so many questions and was so curious about the world but so hesitant to be a part of it because of who he was and his limits. He was adorable and I just want to keep in my pocket so he doesn’t get hurt! And then there’s Kate who was so badass that she really was an unlikable character and that made me love her. She isn’t trying to be someone you want to be friends with she is trying to hide everything about herself and act like someone she’s not (but she is that person at the same time because that’s what she’s made herself into) it was just crazy good seeing all these interactions play out.
Basically, I really loved this book. I think it might be my favourite of Schwab’s books so far, but I thought that with A Darker Shade of Magic so really maybe I shouldn’t speak too soon. It is a fantastic read I would recommend to everyone. There is a reason everyone has been talking about it so check it out!
Have you read this book yet and did you enjoy it? What is your favourite Victoria Schwab book? And what do you think about books posing moral questions without shoving it in your face, like what makes a monster?