A Conjuring of Light is the final book in the Shades of Magic trilogy and therefore this review may contain spoilers for the previous books.
A Gathering of Shadows has such a cliffhanger there was no way I wasn’t going to prioritise the final instalment. Kell and Rhy’s lives hang in the balance and the dark magic that destroyed Black London is loose in Red London.
Myths do not happen all at once. They do not spring forth whole into the world. They form slowly, rolled between the hands of time until their edges smooth, until the saying of the story gives enough weight to the words—to the memories—to keep them rolling on their own.
I like that Holland isn’t a straight out bad guy. Kell has always felt sympathy for him, realising he could so easily have been in his place. Holland’s backstory is revealed, telling how he ended up a slave for the harsh monarchs of White London. It’s not easy to like him, but I can understand why he did the things he did. He just wanted his freedom, to no longer be a puppet, his is a sad tale.
The demise of characters I thought I didn’t care about ended up the most emotional parts. I wish there had been more of Kell and Lila’s backstories, there was a hint that they could be revealed when they are at the black market, but frustratingly it didn’t come to fruition.
I was a bit irritated by Kell and Alucard’s hatred of one another. It seemed petty in light of the danger they faced. It’s Rhy’s heart he broke, not Kell’s and he wants to make amends. It was a bit laboured especially with the knowlege that Alucard didn’t have choice in his leaving.
She’d seen so many versions of him in the past few hours. The broken boy. The grieving brother. The determined prince. This Kell was none of those and all of them, and when he kissed her, she tasted pain and fear and desperate hope.
I have been reading this trilogy on Kindle so I didn’t notice that the final book is a fair bit longer than the others until I was quite a way into it. Wny are third books always so chunky? I certainly felt the story dragged in places. It takes them so long to formulate a plan and do something that doesn’t involve hiding in the palace. It was like they’d all given up. Maybe they had?
The world-building had relied on the Londons and had worked being isolated until now but… If you’re a big bad evil and one city is resisting, why would you not just pop on over to the next one where they weren’t expecting you? The whole world is not London, as some of the characters do leave it. No where else was affected and it was all a bit convenient that it was just a London problem.
Love and loss are like a ship and the sea. They rise together. The more we love, the more we have to lose. But the only way to avoid loss is to avoid love. And what a sad world that would be.
Anyway, it was, eventually, a fitting and moving ending. I’m glad I read it so I can now contribute to the inevitable discussions that crop up. I’ve actually had some magnets on my fridge with quotes from these books so it’s good to know I don’t need to take them off in embarrassment or anything.
There is a new series set in the same universe planned, set 5-10 years later, although we may have to wait till 2020 for it to begin.
POPSUGAR Challenge: 3. The next book in a series you started
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