Mystic City By Theo Lawrence

Aria Rose, youngest scion of one of Mystic City's two ruling rival families, finds herself betrothed to Thomas Foster, the son of her parents' sworn enemies. The union of the two will end the generations long political feud, and unite all those living in the Aeries, the privileged upper reaches of the city, against the banished mystics who dwell below in the Depths. But Aria doesn't remember falling in love with Thomas; in fact, she wakes one day with huge gaps in her memory. And she can't conceive why her parents would have agreed to unite with the Fosters in the first place. Only when Aria meets Hunter, a gorgeous rebel mystic from the Depths, does she start to have glimmers of recollection, and to understand that he holds the key to unlocking her past. The choices she makes can save or doom the city, including herself.

Manhattan is set to host the wedding event that will unite two feuding families, pity seventeen year old Aria can't remember Thomas, as she wakes up from an overdose and suffering partial memory loss. Aria Rose is a political darling, living the life of an entitled girl high in the Rose penthouse apartments. The city is now living between two castes, those living above and the needy and magical living below. Global warming has decimated so many cites around the world, but those with wealth and importance are still living in luxury. The depths are now saltwater filled canals, with the rising sea levels eventually predicted to swallow the island.

The union of the Rose and Foster families will ensure Violet Brooks will never be in power. Violet is a  dangerous Mystic that believes in fairness and equality for all citizens, and Aria's pending nuptials will ensure Manhattan's safety. There is no doubt that Thomas is handsome, dashing even, but for a couple supposedly in love, why are his touches awkward and kisses chaste? Why does he still feel as though he's a stranger? As Aria's lost memories linger just out of reach, she realises this wedding will happen even without her consent. But when she finds a hidden note reminding her to remember, Aria goes searching for answers to the questions she's afraid of asking.

When Aria escapes her own engagement party for a breath of fresh air, she slips upon her balcony and mere moments from plunging to her death, a figure emerges from the shadows to save her. He disappears as quickly as he appeared, but not before Aria catches a glimpse of a small starburst tattoo on the inside of his wrist. Aria can't confide in either best friend Kiki or her personal servant Davida, who she considers a friend. But the details Aria is being fed just aren't adding up. The strange locket she finds in her purse, the lack of engagement ring, considering she and Thomas are supposed to be in love, and the love letters she finds in her room, posing under the names as Romeo and Juliet. But when Aria sneaks out looking to talk to Thomas, she encounters a group of disgruntled teens down within the depths. Angry that her family have abandoned them, and finds herself bleeding from the thugs inflicted wound. When she's saved by an illegal mystic who has retained his powers, rather than being afraid, she escapes with him towards The Block, where the mystics are contained by the powers that be.

Rebel mystics are illegal, Aria's father hunts them on a daily basis, but deep within the Depths of Manhattan, with an empowered mystic, Aria has never felt safer. She now realises that he wasn't a figment of her imagination, Hunter has now saved her twice. Aria has always known that her father was a dangerous man, but when he's called to retrieve her in the middle of the night, courtesy of Thomas, Aria experiences what a cold blooded killer he truly is. Her father has been an advocate for the torture and draining of the mystics abilities, under the guise of powering the city, but it has always been to keep them weak and to abolish any murmurings of a rebellion. The excess power used to make Stic, the drug Aria supposedly took. It's rumored that the rebels are living in the underground subway tunnels, her father and his team, including reformed mystics Elissa and Patrick, searching the city for access.

Her questions lead her to Lyrica, who resides in a hidden building outside the confines of The Block. A mystic with the ability to shed light on Aria's missing memories. Someone has stolen Aria's memories, known as tampering magic. Aria in fact has never taken Stic, with no trace of mystic energy within her body. Aria is being deceived, as it comes to light that she's undergone a procedure to wipe away a memory that her family clearly want to erase from her life. It's clear that Aria has no one that she can trust, apart from Hunter, but is he too hiding something that has been erased?

Violet Brooks is rallying the unfortunate and mystics alike, demanding to be heard while Aria's father wants her silenced. Her savior will be someone that she least suspected, and as the city plunges into mayhem and rioting, not everyone fighting for the cause will survive.

Mystic City has by far, the most incredible prologue that I've come across, I was instantly submerged into the storyline and couldn't put it down. The plot follows the story of Aria, who is a likable character and although she has been brought up as a political princess in one of the most powerful families in Manhattan, she's street smart and won't fall into the perfect public life that she's forced to endure. More dystopian with a fantasy twist, it's engaging and the forbidden romance that emerges with Hunter isn't part of the typical young adult love triangle, that becomes clear as the storyline progresses. Mystic city has all the components of an awesome dystopian with a fantasy flare, an oppressive ruler, disgruntled citizens and two groups that would rather Manhattan go down in flames, than to submit.

I loved it! Toxic Heart, book two in the Mystic City series can't come soon enough.

 Mystic City
(Mystic City: Book One)
Written By Theo Lawrence
Published 09 / 10 / 2012
282 Pages

1 comment

  1. Wow, fantastic review of Mystic City! I quite enjoyed it as well, although there were some parts that were fairly typical. I didn't know the sequel was coming out soon, thanks for sharing!


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