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Friday, March 4, 2016

A Gathering of Shadows (Shades of Magic, #2)A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Wow Wow Wow

Yep, it's going to be one of those reviews. A review where the reviewer just can't find the right words to gush over the brilliant novel, get enthused over all the new twists and turns that Lila and Kell have undergone, or how much the reviewer wants to tear something apart over the damn cliffhanger.

That's right. Cliffhanger. God Damn It. And it's good. Real good.

That's not to say that the novel isn't fully self-sufficient and glorious and exciting and full of better magic than even the first in the series, because it is.

I loved the first novel. But I UBER-loved this one. The transition is perfect and perfectly reasonable and lets me get a real gush on over Lila. She's still the same spitfire, but this time she's a LOT more dangerous.

And she's also a big sweetie.

Kell has it bad in so many ways, and I truly sympathize with him. His problems aren't so easily fixed by making a few hard decisions or being more understanding. He's doing the best he can, I love him for it.

The fact that these two have one of the best slow-burns going on that I've ever read, and I've read a good number of great slow-burns, is only spice to the great raging fire of magic pouring out of these books.

Did I mention that there was great magic?

That there's some of the best magic action scenes in the business in these novels? That it follows Sanderson's Law down to the letter? That one of the main characters we get to know and love is called Alucard and one of the pirate's mates is Stross? Yeah, I got a huge kick out of both of these names, too, but no, Alucard isn't a vampire. :) No Dracula, sorry.

Sure, there's a few old funhouse tropes like pirates and tournaments, but the best thing about the book is the characters, the panache of the writing, and the perfect pacing.

Am I a fanboy forever? Won over?

Yep. It looks like it. :)

I caught myself several times trying to actively stretch out the story, praying that it would never end, and of course, when it did, as it did, I wanted to rage and scream and spit.

I didn't do those things, of course, although, it was a very near thing. ;)

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