Review of This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab

ThisSavageSongThis Savage Song
By: Victoria Schwab
Release Day: July 5th 2016
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Format: Print ARC
Source: Gifted

My Rating:
star

Summary:
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.

My Thoughts:
I see Schwab’s name and I’m immediately know I’m going to read the book. She’s a must read/buy author for me and I was not at all disappointed in This Savage Song. It was such an original story, with characters I was completely riveted by. I wanted to know more and I loved how things were slowly revealed throughout the story.

My only small issue with this book was that I had some confusion at times about the secondary characters- like – who’s that again? And the world building was a bit lacking in detail for me. I needed a bit more to wrap my brain around why things were the way they were. I prefer this confusion though to a massive info dump so it’s not a huge issue. And honestly, it might have just been me. I’ll be interested to see if others struggled with this aspect too or not.

The characters! I absolutely adore August. He was such a well developed, and original character. I could feel his inner struggle and sadness. He’s the type of character you wish were real because you would love to know them. Granted, I’d not want our world to be like the one in this book but you get the idea. The idea of having different types of monsters- Corsai, Malachai and Sunai- was so wonderful. Schwab created so much depth within each type and I was completely convinced they could logically be real in this world she created.

I struggled a tiny bit with Kate at the start because she’s not exactly the nicest person but I found her to be very realistic in the sense that she’s dealt with such hardship. I loved how she had tough edges and was set on accomplishing her goal- winning her father’s approval.

The pacing was done wonderfully- lots of action sequences with vivid descriptions which helped up the tension. Interspersed were great moments of character development so really- this all worked so well for me.

Final Thoughts:
Can Victoria Schwab do any wrong? I think not. Once again she has created a beautifully written book with excellent characters.

Blog Tour- A Darker Shade of Magic by Victoria Schwab + Giveaway

Darker Shade Magic Web Banner
Welcome to my stop on the A Darker Shade of Magic Digital London Blog tour. I’m so excited to have Victoria answering a question today on the blog and offering a reader the chance to win this book along with a double sided poster.

You might have seen my post on why you must read this book-I hope you’ll take my word for it and give not only A Darker Shade of Magic but Victoria’s other books a chance. Victoria is a gifted story-teller and has the ability to create unique worlds and characters that you remember long past reading the book.

You might have seen a Buzzfeed Quiz which allowed for you to find which London you would fit into best. My results…

greylondon

Which is funny because our stop today is Grey London. Coincidence? Or does this show I’m free of all magic?

Gladstone quote

My Question to Victoria

If you had to live in any world that you’ve created which would it be and why?

Either Red London—a place where magic thrives—or Merit, a world where superpowers are possible. The former, if I could be a magician, and the latter if I was guaranteed to come back with an awesome power like Victor’s or Sydney’s, since the world of VICIOUS is only ExtraOrdinary if you are.

About the Book

A Darker Shade final for Irene

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.

On Sale February 24, 2015
Print – IndieBound, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books A Million, Powell’s, Walmart.
E-Book – Kindle, Nook, iBooks, eBooks, Google Play, Kobo

 

About the Author

 

V. E. Schwab author photoV. E. SCHWAB‘s first adult novel, Vicious, debuted to critical praise and reader accolades. Schwab is the author of YA novels The Near Witch, The Archived, and The Unbound, and the Everyday Angel series for middle grade readers.

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Giveaway (International)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Visit the other blogs on the tour

Read This Book- A Darker Shade of Magic by Victoria Schwab

I am unable to write a traditional review for this book because sometimes…when a book is wonderful I get completely stumped as to what to write. Most of the time I push through and ramble on until I hope I’ve conveyed my love for the book and hope it’s coherent. With ADSOF I have the luxury of not having to write a review so instead I’ll just talk to you about why I think you should read this book.

About the book:

A Darker Shade final for IreneSummary:
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.

Why Should You Read This Book?

First, have you read any of Schwab’s work yet? If you have- I doubt you’ve not got this on your must read list. If you’ve not read her work you really should if you enjoy creative and complex world building.

If you frequent Twitter you might have seen a whole lot of excitement surrounding this book’s release. I’ve yet to see a single person not like this book so that says something. Of course, it might just be that I’m not friends with poor taste (kidding…sort of).

I’m hoping you’ve read the summary because it’s a really great one. Most times I don’t bother to read them myself but I’d recommend it in this case. I’ll not go over the book’s plot but I will say that I fell in love with Kell and would read pretty much anything he’s a character in. I’ll also say that I really enjoyed the alternate worlds and the fact that Kell had the ability to jump between them. What an amazing concept! Plus, Schwab did not disappoint in her execution.

Also, go into this expecting wonderful baddies that are pretty well frightening and cruel (aren’t those the best?) I really felt they had an amazing back story that we’ve just not seen (yet? please, I’d love to read a novella about them).

Read this if you like magic, adventure, cross dressing pirates, an amazing coat (you’ll need to read the book to see why) and about a 100 more reasons.

 

Review of The Unbound by Victoria Schwab

The Unbound (The Archived, #2)The Unbound (The Archived #2)
By: Victoria Schwab
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Release Date: January 28th 2014

An electronic copy was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review

My Rating:
star

This is a sequel so there will be spoilers for the first book, The Archived.

Summary:
Last summer, Mackenzie Bishop, a Keeper tasked with stopping violent Histories from escaping the Archive, almost lost her life to one. Now, as she starts her junior year at Hyde School, she’s struggling to get her life back. But moving on isn’t easy — not when her dreams are haunted by what happened. She knows the past is past, knows it cannot hurt her, but it feels so real, and when her nightmares begin to creep into her waking hours, she starts to wonder if she’s really safe.

Meanwhile, people are vanishing without a trace, and the only thing they seem to have in common is Mackenzie. She’s sure the Archive knows more than they are letting on, but before she can prove it, she becomes the prime suspect. And unless Mac can track down the real culprit, she’ll lose everything, not only her role as Keeper, but her memories, and even her life. Can Mackenzie untangle the mystery before she herself unravels?

With stunning prose and a captivating mixture of action, romance, and horror, The Unbound delves into a richly imagined world where no choice is easy and love and loss feel like two sides of the same coin.

The Story:
Victoria Schwab has a way with words. Her writing continues to be both beautiful and haunting in this sequel to The Archived.  If you’ve read Schwab’s work, then you know that her writing is slow paced but never boring. She takes time to build her world and characters, allowing the reader to become fully immersed while slowly ticking up the tension into vivid action scenes.

The Unbound picks up with Mac trying to adjust and overcome the events of what occurred in the last book. We explore her struggle with balancing both her normal life and that of a Keeper. I loved that Schwab didn’t wash over how those things would have affected her but delved into it and really showed us what it felt like. The story woven was incredibly complex and twisty turny though never confusing. I’ve always been a fan of her creative world building and how closely it mirrors our own reality but with just enough to make it completely unique. I felt that this second journey into the world of the Keepers gave me even more insight into how this world functions.

The Characters:
In The Archived I really loved Wesley, Mac, Roland and Da. All were incredibly genuine and fleshed out. In The Unbound we have less of Da and Roland but so much more of Mac. I thought I had known her after reading the first installment but I was introduced to even more depth. After the events of the last novel Mac is dealing with so much fear, guilt and confusion. Watching her struggle in her everyday life was as intriguing as it was heartbreaking. She hasn’t been able to sleep without horrible nightmares so her waking life is blurred around the edges and so the book has a dream-like quality. I loved this aspect.

Mac’s lack of sleep and nightmares plus her stubborn nature and inability to admit that she needs help puts her in critical situations and had me tense. I was biting my nails watching her blunder her way through life. I constantly wanted to shake her and force her to confide in someone.

Wesley. Just a big sigh of relief when I think of his character (and guy-liner).  I grew to appreciate him even further in this book. As Mac’s world was crumbling he felt like a pillar of comfort and support. After the confusion of what Mac has been experiencing I felt as relieved as she did within his presence. I loved that we became privy to tiny bits of his life beyond his interactions with Mac and as a Keeper. Along with his own character growth, I felt that his dialog and understanding for Mac’s situation grew as well.

We meet some new characters and continue to see Mac’s family trying to cope with their lives. The one character I felt was somewhat absent was Roland. I admit, he wasn’t as needed in this storyline but I missed him regardless.

Final Thoughts:
Once again I have fallen in love with Victoria Scwhab’s writing, world and characters.

Extras:
My review of The Archived
Lego recreation of the cover of The Unbound

The Unbound Blog Tour-Lego Art

UnboundBlogTour

I am honored to be a stop on The Unbound Blog Tour. The Unbound is the second book in this series (fingers crossed for a third). If you’ve not checked out any of Victoria Schwab’s writing out you must. She is gifted at creating lush worlds with realistic and well developed characters. I’ve loved all the books I’ve read of hers (all but Vicious which I need to read soon).

For our stop here at My Friends Are Fiction we’ve recreated the cover of The Unbound with Lego. I hope you enjoy

UnboundLego320

Read my review of The Archived the first book of the series and look for my review of The Unbound later this week.

Be sure to Check out the other Blog Tour stops:

January 14th: Ex Libris 
January 15th: YA Bibliophile
January 16th: Consumed by Books
January 17th: The Turning Pages 
January 20th: My Friends Are Fiction
January 21st: Jenna at MTG Reviews