Review: Our Dark Duet (Monsters of Verity#2) by Victoria Schwab

Our Dark Duet (Monsters of Verity #2) by Victoria Schwab

Published by: Grenwillow Books

Date of Publication: June 13th 2017

Genres: Young Adult Fantasy/Paranormal

Pages: 510

Format: I own physical book

Rating:★★★★★ 5 Stars

*Please note there are spoilers for This Savage Song in this review. If you’d like to check out my review for This Savage Song, please see here.

THE WORLD IS BREAKING. AND SO ARE THEY.

KATE HARKER isn’t afraid of monsters. She hunts them. And she’s good at it.

AUGUST FLYNN once yearned to be human. He has a part to play. And he will play it, no matter the cost.

THE WAR HAS BEGUN.

THE MONSTERS ARE WINNING.

Kate will have to return to Verity. August will have to let her back in. And a new monster is waiting—one that feeds on chaos and brings out its victims’ inner demons.

Which will be harder to conquer: the monsters they face, or the monsters within?

It has now been 1 week since I finished Our Dark Duet aka “Breaker of Hearts” in my home *sobs* & since this is the sequel to a duology, I’ll keep this review short, dark, and spoiler free 😉

Great track to listen to while reading ODD, Windmill Song is strictly Violin & it def has that Monstress tone to it 😉

When we last left Verity, Kate & August had confronted Harker (her dad) & asked for his truths. After finding out that Harker is responsible for the death of her mother & also for breaking the truce, Kate doesn’t hesitate to shoot at her father. August intervenes & reaps his soul so as to prevent her from making the kill shot & thus creating her own monster. They each go their own ways with the expectation that it would be their last time seeing each other. This was all fine & well until the world as they knew it grew even darker than before while under the “protection” of Harker. With Harker out of the way, Sloan a Malchai (Monster) has taken up the mantle with a full crew of monsters & deviants to do his dirty work. Up until now, Verity was the only place infested with these creatures. Kate soon learns about a new monster behind violent acts & it is roaming the streets of Prosperity a place known to be safe from the darkness that plagues Verity….

The events in This Savage Song left deep scars in all of the players involved & also left some questioning the very foundation of their principles. In this new world innocents seek shelter from the monsters that have taken over more than half of the city. However, a warm bed/meal on the opposite side of the city is made available only to those souls who have never taken a life voluntarily or in self defense. August is now a leader in the FTC & to him is left the toughest task of reaping souls. We all know August as a Sunai who longed to be just an ordinary boy going to school & not acceptant of his true nature. We see August give in to his darker side in ODD & kind of go numb to his new world. Kate on the other hand has gone full on vigilante mode in Prosperity. She’s even found a group of hackers that serve as kind of her “Over watch” who go by the name of The Wardens while she goes on missions to clean up the streets one monster at a time. I found this addition of new characters to be a bit odd this late in the game but I’m keeping hope alive that this leaves the door open for a spin-off. As always, Schwab doesn’t disappoint with character development. She has created a dark world filled with fear & desperation that has molded these characters in order to fight back. Seeing both Kate & August’ slow progression to their end game cemented my attachment to these characters. Heavily flawed & jaded yet holding on tight to the belief that humanity is worth saving…

Photo credit: alekzandermorozova

“People were messy. They were defined not only by what they’d done, but by what they would have done, under different circumstances, molded as much by their regrets as their actions, choices they stood by and those they wished they could undo. Of course, there was no going back – time only moved forward – but people could change.

For worse.

And for better.

It wasn’t easy. The world was complicated. Life was hard. And so often, living hurt.

So make it worth the pain.”

It’s safe to say that I will read anything Schwab writes at this point. She speaks to that dark part of your soul…yea I truly do believe we all have a smidge of that (some more than others lol). I’m also noticing that as I follow her writing career through her books, she gets better & better with each new book. I’ve gotten accustomed to her first book in any series being slow paced while it builds to the sequel & yet I do not mind. She is wonderful at weaving complex characters and worlds where nothing is ever as simple as Good or Evil. Her characters always walking that thin line between either or making them much more authentic. I’m sad to see this world come to a close & that ending truly destroyed me, yet I am satisfied with it all. A ending that isn’t neatly wrapped up & one where the reader shares in the pain of the characters they love. AMAZING. Fingers crossed that the door to Monsters of Verity is left even a fraction open, I’d take that 🙂

Are any readers out there mending a broken heart? (no spoilers in comm plz) I sure am! any theories on The Wardens? I’m being hopeful here lol!

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July Owlcrate Unboxing

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Owlcrate’s July theme is Good Vs. Evil. The Owlery delivered yesterday & this month I received a ‘Good’ box. I did have my heart set on ‘Evil’ but that’s only because I had my eyes on Maleficent HAHA! Did anyone get her in their box?  I’m in love with my little friend Dobby & very happy to have received a full sized Funko Pop. Super excited to receive This Savage Song by Victoria Scwab! It was on my highly anticipated 2016 new releases. Also in this box were the following items:

1 Millennium Falcon necklace from Vector Engraving
1 Alice in Wonderland magnetic bookmark (back of Alice’s head says “I know who I was when I got up this morning. But I think I must have CHANGED several times since the “-Lewis Carol

1 Illuminae by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff hand designed quote sticker

1 booklet of YA book covers to color

1 personalized letter from Victoria Scwab

1 promotional bookmark for Kenneth Opel’s New book Every Hidden Thing

I LOVE This month’s box!!! Dobby now sits on my shelf next to Luna & Dumbledore (collection is growing) & This Savage Song is in the Hall Of Schwab. I’ll be buddy reading This Savage Song in the next couple of weeks with Gretchen over at Chicnerdreads 🙂

June 2016 Wrap-Up

Let me start off by saying, JUNE was EPIC!!!! I only read 4 books (finishing the 4th one tonight) this month because LIFE! It was a beautiful month filled with tons of memories that I will cherish til i’m gray & old. I married the love of my life who also happens to be my book soul mate & our little girl graduated from Pre-K as Valedictorian & Killed her speech! *Smiles*. I’m surprised to have even read these 4 books so lets get into them…

1. Me Before You by JoJo Moyes ★★★★★

I changed my rating of this book twice until I realized that if a book can move me to feel such strong emotions about a controversial topic such as Euthanasia, then that means it deserves my 5 stars. The characters in this book will stay with me for a very long time, I still have not watched the movie because I wanted to give it some time but it will def be soon (book to movie reaction post to follow).

My Review: Me Before You by JoJo Moyes

Me Before You by JoJo Moyes

2. Becoming Rain by K.A. Tucker (Burying Water #2)  ★★★★★

An edge of your seat, heart pounding, sexy New Adult novel that I DEVOURED! so far I have loved all of K.A. Tucker’s characters, they all are 50 shades of complex. Fast paced & filled with plot twists, Becoming Rain was better than it’s predecessor Burying Water. Each one of the books in this series follows a female lead and eventually her love interest with occasional guest appearances by some of the other characters from previous books. I enjoy seeing some of my favorites pop up in the next book.

My Review: Becoming Rain by K.A. TuckerBecoming Rain

3.  A Darker Shade Of Magic by V.E. Schwab ★ (4.5 stars)

My 1st V.E. Schwab book did not disappoint. The writing was on point & I truly felt immersed into all of the London’s with the exception of Black London (not yet explored). This was a fast paced read, full of action, and magic however not much character development. One thing I found myself enjoying was the focus that was given to the plot/world building & that there was no love story. Although I do enjoy my ships, I didn’t feel the need to wonder who would be paired with who & instead enjoyed the magic and adventure V.E. Schwab takes you on. My guess is that book 2 will show more character development because of how the final chapters played out in ADSOM. My copy of A Gathering Of Shadows arrived a few days ago & i’m thinking that I will hold off on reading it because A Conjuring Of Light #3 doesn’t get released until February 2017.

My Review:A Darker Shade Of Magic (Shades Of Magic #1)

A Darker Shade final for Irene

4. My Lady Jane by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, & Jodi Meadows ★

My 1st Owlcrate box was this month’s June Royalty box & it was EVERYTHING & MORE! no regrets here. I switched over to Owlcrate from another subscription box & I loved every single item I received. I was a bit skeptical on whether I would enjoy My Lady Jane because it’s being compared to The Princess Bride & Monty Python, both of which I’ve heard about, but never read/watched. Well, I have NEVER laughed this much reading any book EVER! this book doesn’t take itself seriously at all, in fact it does the complete opposite. Light & silly, My Lady Jane was exactly what I needed for the start of Summer. I’ve got about 70 pages to go tonight & will update this post with a star rating in the morning but it’s looking like a hands down 5 STARS! (Review to come)

***UPDATE*** Finished My Lady Jane today, Review in the link below 🙂

My review: My Lady Jane By Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, and Jodi Meadows

My Lady Jane

 

 

Review: A Darker Shade Of Magic by V.E. Schwab

A Darker Shade Of Magic by V.E. Schwab
Series: Shades Of Magic (Book #1)
Published by: Tor Books 
Date of Publication: February 24th, 2015
Genres: Adult Fantasy 
Pages: 400
Format: Hardcover (I own)
Rating:★★★★ (4.5 stars)

Goodreads Synopsis:

Kell is one of the last Antari, a rare magician who can travel between parallel worlds: hopping from Grey London — dirty, boring, lacking magic, and ruled by mad King George — to Red London — where life and magic are revered, and the Maresh Dynasty presides over a flourishing empire — to White London — ruled by whoever has murdered their way to the throne, where people fight to control magic, and the magic fights back — and back, but never Black London, because traveling to Black London is forbidden and no one speaks of it now.

Officially, Kell is the personal ambassador and adopted Prince of Red London, carrying the monthly correspondences between the royals of each London. Unofficially, Kell smuggles for those willing to pay for even a glimpse of a world they’ll never see, and it is this dangerous hobby that 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 take her with him for her proper adventure.

But perilous magic is afoot, and treachery lurks at every turn. To save both his London and the others, Kell and Lila will first need to stay alive — a feat trickier than they hoped.

I’ve owned a copy of A Darker Shade Of Magic for quite some time now and finally decided it was time to see what all the hype is about surrounding a certain author by the name V.E. Schwab. I can now say that I’ve read a Schwab book & that the hype is well deserved. The writing is flawless (at least in my opinion) and at times gave me Brandon Sanderson Mistborn vibes which is a VERY good thing (again, at least in my opinion lol). This was a fast paced read that takes place in parallel London’s. There are four London’s however, we only get to see three of the four through Kell who is one of the last remaining Antari. I found the world building & magic system to be one of the best I’ve read in a long time. We learn about all of the different London’s as well as how the magic works & the commands used for specific spells. We also get introduced to DeLilah Bard aka Lila who is best known as a thief with ambitions of becoming a pirate (just as soon as she can steal herself a ship). Kell & Lila’s paths cross and our adventure begins.

“Lila Bard lived by a simple rule: if a thing was worth having, it was worth taking.”
V.E. Schwab, A Darker Shade of Magic

Lila_Bard_and_Kell_-_victoriaying

I gave ADSOM a 4.5 stars as opposed to the full 5 because I wanted more character development. We get some background on Kell throughout the book however, Lila’s back story only starts to surface towards the last few chapters at which point we learn something that Lila herself is unaware of (this alone makes me want AGOS lol). Based off of the last few chapters, i’m hoping that we will get character development in A Gathering Of Shadows  (Shades Of Magic #2). I’m also looking forward to hopefully *fingers crossed* getting to see Black London which has been sealed off from the rest of the London’s including the Antari. Being that I thoroughly enjoyed V.E. Schwab’s writing style and world building, it’s safe to say that i’ll be reading the rest of the series and checking out her other books.

 

Teaser Tuesdays

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly meme hosted by Books and a Beat. For this meme, we grab our current read, open it to a random page and share two teaser sentences from somewhere on that page with our book friends.


A Darker Shade Of Magic by V.E. Schwab

Series: Shades Of Magic #1

Hardcover: 400 pages

Publication Date: February 25th, 2015

Publisher: Tor Books

Setting: Alternate London’s

“Kell had seen what happened when power warred with the body, watched it darken in the veins of corrupted men, turning their blood from crimson to black. If red was the color of magic in balance—of harmony between power and humanity—then black was the color of magic without balance, without order, without restraint.”