ADSOM: Book One
Written by V.E. Schwab
Fantasy, Young Adult, Magic
Published February 27th 2015 by Titan Books
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Kell is one of the last Travelers—rare magicians who choose a parallel universe to visit.
Grey London is dirty, boring, lacks magic, ruled by mad King George. Red London is where life and magic are revered, and the Maresh Dynasty presides over a flourishing empire. White London is ruled by whoever has murdered their way to the throne. People fight to control magic, and the magic fights back, draining the city to its very bones. Once there was Black London - but no one speaks of that now.
Officially, Kell is the Red Traveler, personal ambassador and adopted Prince of Red London, carrying the monthly correspondences between royals of each London. Unofficially, Kell smuggles for those willing to pay for even a glimpse of a world they’ll never see. This dangerous hobby sets him up for accidental treason. Fleeing into Grey London, Kell runs afoul of Delilah Bard, a cut-purse with lofty aspirations. She robs him, saves him from a dangerous enemy, then forces him to another world for her 'proper adventure'.
But perilous magic is afoot, and treachery lurks at every turn. To save all of the worlds, Kell and Lila will first need to stay alive — trickier than they hoped.
ADSOM has astounding worldbuilding. This was what I adored most out of a plethora of other things. I'm pretty sure Victoria Schwab prides herself on being original - if she doesn't then she really should because wow. WOW. I was blown away by the uniqueness of the four London's (Red, White, Black and Grey). Each one had its own rules, its own people and its own magical standing allowing for differentiation betwixt four very similar yet different worlds that our character(s) traverse throughout the plot. Despite the fact we don't get to see anything from Black London, we're still provided a vivid image of what it's like. I definitely found White London the most intriguing.
“I'm not going to die," she said. "Not till I've seen it."
Her smile widened. "Everything.”
Fantastic writing & a captivating plot. I'm new to this authors work, but if I'm honest I haven't heard of anyone who doesn't like her writing. It's applauded everywhere I go, and by everyone I've spoken to and rightly so. It has everything and more, there is no doubt in my mind that if anyone was born to write it was Victoria Schwab. More importantly though, is the fact that she is a thourall plotter. I was hooked from page one, I needed to know where Kell and Lila's story would lead which kept me reading well into the night even when I was beat. I've added one more author to my short list of favorites.
A Darker Shade of Magic was an adventure that left me wanting more. I did not ever expect to enjoy this book as much as I did, and I'm thankful to all those who recommended it to me (even if it took me twenty years to pick up a copy). I'll have to get a copy of AGOS as soon as possible. I'm even considering getting a quote tattoo (unsure of what yet, there's so many great lines but that's how much I loved it!). Buy it, check it out - just read this series guys!
grunts. i'm so tired tbh.