A Darker Shade of Magic by V. E. Schwab

I am not usually into sci-fi or fantasy books that have complicated or detailed inner-workings and multiple universes because I don’t like being bogged down with rules and confusing details but I loved the plot of this book so I could overlook times where the universes seems too be overly complicated.

There are 4 Londons/ parallel universes in this book: Grey London or the non-magical London we all know, Red London where magic is seen as a blessing and the government and everyday life is stable, White London where magic is seen as a rare resource and constant upheaval in the government making daily life perilous, and Black London which was destroyed. A special kind of magician is neede to travel between the different Londons and the main character, Kell, is on r of these rare magicians. Kell is part of the royal family in Red London, adopted in when he was young, and is an ambassador for Red London as well as a smuggler. Technically smuggling (taking magical objects from one London to another) is treason but Kell is looking to make some money and have some adventure so he ignores this rule. He does not know the danger he is putting the universes in until he is set up and unknowingly smuggles a dangerous magical item across the universe that starts reeking havoc on innocent bystanders. Kell flees from the havoc to Grey London and a pickpocket named Delilah Bard, or Lila, steals the magical object from him not knowing what it is or what magic is. When Kell tracks her down to get it back, she ends up saving his life and convinces him to take her to the magical Londons to help him. This turns into an adventure where non-magical Lila and a weakened Kell try to save the worlds and figure out who to trust.

I loved Lila with her spunky, independent attitude. This book was easy to read and read fast when I had the chance to read it. I don’t always take to sci-fi books but the humor and the adventure and the action made it easy to love this book.

I gave this book 4 out of 5 stars on Goodreads.


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