Review: A Gathering of Shadows

A Gathering of Shadows (Shades of Magic, #2)A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

As always my review contains spoilers:

This wasn’t quite a 4 star book but I’m rounding up to 4 instead of down to 3.

The first book was easily 4 stars, maybe a little higher. This book was tasked with the very important duty of creating the world. While the first book introduced us to the four Londons we only saw the London cities. In A Gathering of Shadows, we begin to see just how vast the red world is, while getting glimpses of the recovery in White London.

While this book did a phenomenal​ job with world building it was not nearly as engaging as the first. The plot was–well there really wasn’t a plot. It felt like it existed to show us how powerful Lila was and to introduce the big bad guy for the epic series finale. Again, this is obviously important, but that doesn’t mean it warrants as high of a review as the first book.

It’s a necessary bridge novel setting up what I assume will be an unbelievable third novel. I enjoyed the introduction of new characters, the expansion of the world, and the establishment of the main villain. I wished the tournament was a bigger deal, we only got to see it in the final 30% of the book and even then it was underwhelming (except when Lila was the participant). As usual she stole every scene she was in and was by far the most interesting character. Alucard Emery was second.

Yeah, I think that’s all I have to say about this one. It was a bridge novel, but it didn’t feel like it was filler. Everything was necessary; it just felt more like part 1 of the final book and not the 2nd book in a trilogy.

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Review: Third Life

Third LifeThird Life by R.K. Gold

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

If me giving a star rating for my own book bothers people I will clear the stars, but I love writing reviews because it feels like a second author note right there on the book’s goodreads page.

There were no big announcements for this release or anything I usually do in the lead up to a book publication. This is an incredibly short (82 page) novella I wrote towards the end of my semester and wanted to publish. It’s one of those books that just stuck with me for a while; I couldnt shake the idea from my head, so when a friend of mine offered to do a writing sprint, I decided to finally give this plot the focus it deserved.

What makes this book unique for me is it wasn’t born out of a usual plot idea, or the dire need to create a certain character; I wrote it because these questions of free will vs predestination have been playing in my head so I wanted to write about a character who had no say over their life.

I kept it short, even though it probably could’ve been at least another couple hundred pages, because I didn’t want to bore anyone with these questions I just wanted to illustrate them.

If anyone wants to have conversations on these topics feel free to send me a friend request or a message on here, I am always up for a philosophical discussion.

As always, thanks for reading.

-R.K. Gold

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Review: Running in Circles

Running in CirclesRunning in Circles by Lauren Lee

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Oy vey

Not for the faint of heart. Running in circles is a highly entertaining, thrilling, and disturbing tale about a small town monster.

The style of the text weaves flashbacks and present scenes seamlessly, creating a full narrative that ties everything together in the end.

I’m nervous about giving spoilers so I’ll give a warning not to read on from here.
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The development of the sherif is what really makes this book stand out. Filling out his whole life story is what really makes it special. There is some tension over the course of the book where you’re left asking who the killer is and are led to believe it’s other characters but the author always left clues that pointed back to the true killer.

While the plot is important what makes this book so memorable is it’s pro/antagonist.

What you will be left thinking about when you finish is just how easily monsters can live amongst us.

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