A Gathering of Shadows

Posted 09/17/2021 by Stephanie in Audiobook Reviews, Reviews, YA / 0 Comments

A Gathering of ShadowsA Gathering of Shadows
Series: Shades of Magic #2
by V. E. Schwab
Published by Macmillan
on 02/23/2016
Genres: Fiction / Fantasy / Action & Adventure
Format: Audiobook
Pages: 512
Length: 16 hours 9 minutes

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From #1 New York Times bestselling author V.E. Schwab

"Addictive and immersive, A Gathering of Shadows cements this series as a must-read." —Entertainment Weekly, grade A

Four months have passed since the shadow stone fell into Kell's possession. Four months since his path crossed with Delilah Bard. Four months since Rhy was wounded and the Dane twins fell, and the stone was cast with Holland's dying body through the rift, and into Black London.

In many ways, things have almost returned to normal, though Rhy is more sober, and Kell is now plagued by his guilt. Restless, and having given up smuggling, Kell is visited by dreams of ominous magical events, waking only to think of Lila, who disappeared from the docks like she always meant to do. As Red London finalizes preparations for the Element Games-an extravagant international competition of magic, meant to entertain and keep healthy the ties between neighboring countries-a certain pirate ship draws closer, carrying old friends back into port.

But while Red London is caught up in the pageantry and thrills of the Games, another London is coming back to life, and those who were thought to be forever gone have returned. After all, a shadow that was gone in the night reappears in the morning, and so it seems Black London has risen again-and so to keep magic's balance, another London must fall...in V.E. Schwab's A Gathering of Shadows.

Shades of Magic series
1. A Darker Shade of Magic
2. A Gathering of Shadows
3. A Conjuring of Light

Lila Bard continues doing what Lila Bard wants. At the end of book 1, Lila wanted a ship and we see her eyeing a specific one. Book 2, picks up with Lila on said ship. Well sort of.

Lila made it onto Alucard Emery’s ship as part of the crew. It took a lot to keep her English hidden and she had to hustle to learn Arnesian. Somewhere on their 4 month sea voyage, Alucard catches Lila speaking English and surprises her by also speaking it. That’s when their friendship begins. And in a very Lila Bard way, she gets Alucard to teach her magic.

Things are not easy for Kell and Rhy back in Red London. They’re dealing with the consequences of Kelly’s actions from the ‘black night”. If Kell was feared before that night, that fear has escalated after that night.

My heart goes out to Kell from page 1. He did all that he could, even went beyond what he should have, and yet the royal family treat him differently. It was one thing to suspect their true feelings and another to actually confirm them. And for Kell, not ever knowing anything about his past, the Maresh are his family.

The Antaris just don’t have good lives. We also get to meet up with a certain Antari who everyone thinks is dead. This is what creates the big bad for book 2 and 3.

Although the story still revolves around magic, I actually liked that we got to see beyond that. We get to see the relationships, the heartaches, the inner struggles, the fight between balance.

With that ending, i have to begrudgingly say that Lila’s personality and all her stubbornness is impressive. Dangerously impressive.

About V. E. Schwab

Victoria “V.E.” Schwab is the #1 NYT, USA, and Indie bestselling author of more than a dozen books, including Vicious, the Shades of Magic series, and This Savage Song. Her work has received critical acclaim, been featured by EW and The New York Times, been translated into more than a dozen languages, and been optioned for TV and Film. The Independent calls her the “natural successor to Diana Wynne Jones” and touts her “enviable, almost Gaimanesque ability to switch between styles, genres, and tones.”