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Friday, October 30, 2015

Audiobook Review: A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab

First things first, I would not shelve this book anywhere near a romance section. I have read other fantasy books that had much, much more romantic intensity than this book did. I will give it to you straight, there was one kiss, and honestly it was quick and unexpected because neither character expressed any interest in each other romantically before the kiss happened.

Having said that, I did still fairly enjoy this book. It took me a long time to listen to the whole thing. My aim with audio books is that they push me to go workout at a gym. This one didn't do that so I couldn't bring myself to give it a higher rating. The concept of there being four different "Londons" in different realms that coexist was interesting. The history of how the rules came into place was also very well thought.

The main character is Kel. He is the adopted son of the king and queen of Red London. He has a very rare ability to travel all four Londons. It is so rare, that only he and one other share this ability. The Londons were once open to one another, before Black London became dangerous, and now to prevent that magical disease from spreading, strict rules are put into place about items being transferred from one London to another. Kel finds a small bit of smuggling peaks his interest.

The smuggling leads Kel into some bad events as he is tricked into carrying something from Black London into Gray London where he is ambushed. Lila Bard is an inhabitant of Grey London (which is basically a steampunk version of our current London) where magic doesn't exist. She swipes the object from Kel believing him drunk. Once Kel finds Lila to get it back, the two oddly enough work together to figure out what is going on and fix the problem.

The story was very action packed and full of magic. I enjoyed listening to the story. The narrator did a pretty good job, except for Lila's voice. He made her come off very annoying, which may be accurate to how she is, but it drove me a little crazy. So I liked the book overall despite its lack of romance, but not all romance readers like just plain fantasy.

**Audiobook provided by Publisher**

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