All, BOTM, Joint, Other Bookishness

BOOK OF THE MONTH REVIEW: A Darker Shade of Magic

July Book of the Month: A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Scwab
Published: February 24th, 2015

TW: Self Harm

Episode Eleven: A Darker Shade of Magic


ANNOUNCER: This review is brought to you by Words About Words.

BREE: Thank you for tuning in! Today we will be discussing our July book of the month, A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab.

TREE: If that name sounds familiar it’s because we reviewed City of Ghosts as our November 2018 book of the month.

aBREE:  So, I know this isn’t your first time reading A Darker Shade of Magic.

TREE:  Yeah, it was one of my 2019 goals to reread this book and then continue with the rest of the series. Which I doubt is going to end up happening.

BREE: And why do you say that? I mean, I quite liked the characters and would like to see what kind of mischief they get into next.

TREE: I have been having such a hard time with fantasy this year and I am not sure if that is why I struggled with this one or I just did not like the book. So I am not sure if I am just going to give up on this series or try to pick up book two later.

BREE: Just don’t reread book one again! (laughs) And I totally understand. I have been in a major reading slump this month. I’ve only finished two books, and I absolutely dragged my feet through this one. What’s something you did like about A Darker Shade of Magic though?

TREE: Yeah, I definitely won’t be rereading it again. I will say that I love Schwab’s writing, even though I have not enjoyed all of her books, her writing always stands out. There are some iconic quotes and I wish I had underlined my favorites as I went along.

BREE: I finally saw the iconic line “I’d rather die on an adventure, than live standing still.” in action. And by the infamous Delilah Bard, no less! I think her character was my favorite thing about this book. She’s just so stabby and sarcastic. She’s hard not to love.

TREE: She is a fun protagonist to follow and can be surprising at times. I never really knew what she was going to do next. I will say the pacing is kind of weird. The synopsis basically gives away the first 100 pages.

BREE: Yeah, I agree with that. I feel like the synopsis basically gave away the entire plot, minus the mischief and shenanigans that occurred. The only time I was really surprised was when Delilah did something unexpected.

TREE: As someone who has read this before, I was more surprised than I should have been (laughs). But, none of the plot is particularly shocking.

BREE: I just feel like the entire book was set up for the rest of the series, and it felt like it. Also, I feel like this book talks about magic way more than they actually use it? And that frustrates me, because what’s a FANTASY book, WITHOUT MAGIC?

TREE: Every other conversation was about magic and why it was bad or why said person wanted magic or how magic smells a certain way and on and on. Do you have any other thoughts?

BREE: Not really. Ready to wrap up?

TREE: Sure! Schwab’s writing and the unique lines of dialogue are what carried me through this book. The first time I read this I gave it 4 stars, but due to my weird reading mood and frankly not caring about a lot, I think I have to give this a 3/5 stars.

BREE: I have to agree. For a book with such a huge following of fans, I was completely underwhelmed by A Darker Shade of Magic. The things I enjoyed the most were Delilah Bard, her sarcasm, and her shenanigans. I might continue the series on that alone. Overall, I have to give this book a 3.5/5 stars, and hope for the best with the rest of the books.

ANNOUNCER: Thanks for tuning in for this review of A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab.

TREE: Next month we are reading With the Fire On High by Elizabeth Acevedo. The Poet X by her is amazing and I can say, since I already read it, this one is great too.

BREE: I hope With the Fire on High is as good in audiobook format as The Poet X!

xoxo, Bree & Tree

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