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SusannaG - Confessions of a Crazy Cat Lady

Just another GR refugee.  Other than that, I had a stroke in 2004, and read almost anything I can get my hands on, though I have a particular weakness for history, mystery, and historical fiction.

Currently reading

Ice Ghosts: The Epic Hunt for the Lost Franklin Expedition
Paul Watson
Progress: 6 %
I Contain Multitudes: The Microbes Within Us and a Grander View of Life
Ed Yong
Progress: 40 %
Wizard's First Rule
Terry Goodkind
Progress: 49 %
Thomas Cromwell: The Untold Story of Henry VIII's Most Faithful Servant
Tracy Borman
Progress: 14 %
Storm in a Teacup: The Physics of Everyday Life
Helen Czerski
Progress: 20 %
The Hanover Square Affair
Ashley Gardner
Progress: 10 %
Medieval Tastes: Food, Cooking, and the Table (Arts and Traditions of the Table: Perspectives on Culinary History)
Beth Archer Brombert, Massimo Montanari
Progress: 10 %
Scars of Independence: America's Violent Birth
Holger Hoock
Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind
Yuval Noah Harari
Progress: 9 %
Elizabeth: The Forgotten Years
John Guy
Progress: 20/512 pages

A Darker Shade of Magic

A Darker Shade of Magic - V.E. Schwab

I debated between 3.5 and 4 stars for this one - I enjoyed this book thoroughly.


The world(s) building was good, both in terms of historical fiction (1819 London - "Gray London") - and fantasy in the two other Londons we visit, Red London and White London.  Once upon a time there was also Black London, but it is now a perilous land where no one ventures, and relics from it are scrupulously destroyed.


Gray London is without magic.  Red London is full of it.  White London is full of people desperate for magic, and also full of murder and torture.  The magical system is well developed - five elements (earth, air, fire, water, bone) and, for a rare set of magicians, blood.


Kell is one of two people who travel between them; the official Traveler for Red London, and a blood magician.  (He has a counterpart from White London.)  He ferries official mail between the worlds' kings (or Prince Regent, in the case of Gray London), and on the side he's a smuggler.  He trades children's games from Red London for silver music boxes in Gray London, or chess pieces in White London.


His smuggling gets him into trouble, and in the process he meets up with Delilah, or Lila, Bard, a thief from Gray London with higher aspirations in life.  And there is magic from Black London afoot in all three Londons.


As I said, I enjoyed this one, and I'd read another one in the series.