A Gathering of Shadows – Review

A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab

Title: A Gathering of Shadows
Author: V.E. Schwab
Publication Month: February
Publisher: Titan Books
Age Range: Young Adult
Publication Date: 23 February 2016


She bent most of the rules. She broke the rest.

A Gathering of Shadows was another phenomenal novel, with magic, adventure, sass and a elemental tournament!

A Gathering of Shadows is book two in Victoria Schwab’s Shades of Magic trilogy, and book two crashed through my expectations with an amazing book to

As this book is a second in a trilogy, I cannot give you a brief summary of the book. I can tell you it follows around four months on from A Darker Shade of Magic… And it was filled with awesomeness.

Since this is a review, below does contain spoilers, if you haven’t read the book, don’t read any further. You have been warned.

Four months on from A Darker Shade of Magic, since Delilah Bard disappeared from the docks of Red London and Kell bound Prince Rhy’s life to his own. Red London is in preparations for the Essen Tasch, where the best magicians from three different countries come together in a competition of magic. While Red London is caught up in the elemental games, another London is rising and might bring down Red London in it’s place.

Victoria writes beautifully, the story seems to flow so effortlessly through her writing and it makes reading such an enjoyable experience. On time of beautiful writing, the world building is the best I have read. I liked exploring outside of the docks of Red London, and seeing more of the magic system develop. That being said, the magic system was wonderful and I loved seeing so many other characters wielding their chosen elements.

It should be noted that A Gathering of Shadows is a lot slower than A Darker Shade of Magic. The book is more character based, although there is still an entertaining plot. I enjoyed the ride a lot more than I did A Darker Shade of Magic though. I feel like the plot was more complex than the first book, and I enjoyed the journey a lot more.

Character development in A Gathering of Shadows was perfection, as we got to learn more about each character, I was able to enjoy characters more than I did in the first book. Lila Bard our aspiring pirate was much more tolerable in this book, even though there were some moments where I was saying to myself it’s that cocky attitude that made me hate you in book one . However, she grew on me in this book, and I appreciated the extra depth Victoria gave her by adding in additional characters like Alucard.

Speaking of Alucard, he stole my heart a little bit… The addition of Lord Emery to the story brought so much more to the characters. He was developed well through the start, and I liked the way he softened Lila’s character, and gave me the ability to actually like her. He was not only a badass but witty, seductive and basically amazing!
Rhy and Kell’s dynamic was a lot different in this book, taking off from the events in A Darker Shade of Magic, you could feel the strain on their relationship. I loved that the banter continued over into this book, and the brother relationship developed. They started to feel like real siblings that spent too much time together, but I love how each of them would project each other at all costs.
Rhy’s parents though… ungrateful, just saying!

Overall, I enjoyed A Gathering of Shadows soooo much more than A Darker Shade of Magic. This story has been set up for an amazing final book, and I cannot wait to dive into A Conjuring of Light.

Favourite Quote: ‘The prince shrugged. “Who needs magic when you look this good?”‘
Rating: 4.75/5

Purchase A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab from Book Depository and receive FREE SHIPPING:



7 thoughts on “A Gathering of Shadows – Review

  1. I’m glad to hear you enjoyed this one! I agree that AGOS is a lot more character-focused than book one, but I think this works really well! Alucard is so amazing though, Schwab creates the best boy crushes 😉


      1. Ah, same! Lila is okay, but I don’t care about her as much as the others- she is way too reckless for her own good. Kell is definitely my baby, I have to admit 😛


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