It has been 2 days since I finished this masterpiece of a novel and I am still reeling over it. What a great start to my 2022 reading life!
To preface this review, I want to add that the only prior book of Schwab’s that I’ve read is The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue, and while I LOVED that book with my heart and soul, it was absolutely nothing like this book. So if you’ve only read Addie and you want to pick up Vicious, just know that you are not going to get a similar novel.
I give this book 50 gajillion stars, though, and here’s why:
If I had to describe this book in one adjective, I think I would choose explosive. From start to finish, this story is fast paced, action packed, and compulsively readable. The story did not lag and there were not chunks of the book that were irrelevant. And I only read a few fantasy novels a year – so if you are worried that this book is only for avid fantasy readers, have no fear! I think anyone can pick this up and easily digest it.
Another thing that Schwab knocked out of the park was the character development alongside the storytelling. I find that, often, authors who are focused on writing something plot driven let the character development slip through the cracks, leaving readers with a lot of questions at the end about why decisions were made throughout. But since Schwab wove in the stories of our key players throughout, I never once questioned their actions or their motives.
Lastly, the dual timeline in this book was executed flawlessly, with both narratives holding a unique purpose that ultimately brought us to the end of the story. The flash backs never gave me readers whiplash, and I didn’t have to question which storyline I was in on any given page or why.
I know it’s only January 12, but I’m calling it now – this is in my top 10 of 2022. It has to be. What a ride. I’m so glad I read it!