Title: A Conjuring of Light
Author: V.E. Schwab
Series: Shades of Magic, #3
Publisher: Titan Books
Release Date: February 21st 2017
The battle between four magical Londons comes to a head in this stunning finale to the New York Times bestselling Shades of Magic trilogy by rising star V. E. Schwab
London’s fall and kingdoms rise while darkness sweeps the Maresh Empire—and the fraught balance of magic blossoms into dangerous territory while heroes and foes struggle alike. The direct sequel to A Gathering of Shadows, and the final book in the Shades of Magic epic fantasy series, A Conjuring of Light sees Schwab reach a thrilling culmination concerning the fate of beloved protagonists—and old enemies.
– Blurb courtesy of goodreads.com
There may be slight spoilers for A Conjuring of Light in this review. If you haven’t yet read the third book in the Shades of Magic series I’d recommend skipping this review until you have. As always this review may contain spoilers for previous book(s) in the series.
My Thoughts On…
When we left A Gathering of Shadows Kell was trapped and chained in White London, Rhy was dying in Red, and Holland had been taken over by a powerful piece of Black London magic. A Conjuring of Light jumps right back into the fray and from the first page I was hooked. With both Kell and Rhy dying the palace is in chaos, as the King and Queen sit by their son and as the winner’s ball commences Lila makes her way to White London to find Kell and bring him home.
Meanwhile Holland, still trapped in his own mind by Osaron, a piece of pure magic that craves chaos, travels to Red London to make the world his own.
Osaron is nothing something that can be easily fought. He is an enemy with no body and no way to be reasoned with; he wants a kingdom, to be a King, and he wants one that is already thriving not one in pieces like White London is. When Kell and Lila return to Red London, bruised and injured from their ordeal, Osaron is launching his attack. He takes over the minds of the citizens and before they know it, before they even have a chance to fight back, Red London is falling.
As every plan they try and launch against Osaron fails, as Red London becomes a ghost town with bodies lining the streets, Kell, Lila and Holland will need to work together, using all the strength, magic and luck at their disposal, to even have a hope of taking down Osaron. Soon, if they don’t find a way to stop him, Red London will share the fate of Black London.
It’s no secret that A Conjuring of Light was my most anticipated release of this year. Ever since I read A Gathering of Shadows I have been waiting for this book, and I pretty much sped through it. I couldn’t get enough and it’s so hard to believe this is the last book of what is my all-time favourite series. V.E. Schwab has created an amazing world and an amazing story. In A Conjuring of Light the action starts right from the beginning and doesn’t stop until the very end. The world has already been built, the characters already developed, and in this book it all came together to create an epic adventure. I never wanted A Conjuring of Light to end but at the same time I couldn’t read it fast enough.
Kell feels partly responsible for bringing Osaron into his world, and seeing the havoc it’s wreaking on his people he is willing to bleed out onto the pavements if it will keep the citizens of Red London safe. Kell has changed a lot from the boy we met in the first book, who traded objects across the worlds. Now he is someone who accepts the responsibility on his shoulders, he no longer wants to run away from the crown but instead fights to protect it.
Lila is another character who’s changed a lot. She is still strong, stubborn and a thief at heart, but like Kell she is now one to stand and fight, risk her life for strangers and a world not her own. She is still reckless, still doesn’t like being given orders, and doesn’t seem to have any respect for rules or authority but she understands the danger she has found herself in in Red London and she is willing to give all she has to defeat Osaron.
The relationships between all the characters were probably my favourite part of this book. The slow build-up between Lila and Kell turns into something more solid in A Conjuring of Light, and I loved every second the two of them were together. They’re both very different characters but their strengths and weaknesses compliment each others, they work well together despite the times they aggravate one another.
The sibling bond between Rhy and Kell was probably my favourite part of this book. Kell’s life is no longer just his own so he has to weigh his actions against the risk to his own life and the risk to Rhy’s as well, but as much as Kell is determined to protect Rhy Rhy feels the same way about Kell. After everything Rhy has been through he becomes a much stronger character in this book. Determined to stand and fight in any way he can even though he has no magic. He wants to be a prince for his people and to show them that they are not fighting alone.
Holland was by far my favourite character in this book. He always been cast in the role of a villain in the first two, a puppet of the Danes and later a puppet of Osaron, but in this book we got to see beyond the surface of his character. We see everything from his beginning to now, no secret of his is left unrevealed and you start to see how being tied to so many people, used as a weapon again and again, weighs on him.
As far as villains go Osaron is an intriguing one. He isn’t a man or even a God, instead he is a piece of magic that had become something more. He craves chaos and wants to be King, wants to see the people of Red London bow before him. Osaron doesn’t understand humans, though he wants to rule over them, but he is incredibly powerful and seemingly unstoppable, after all how can you defeat an enemy with no solid form who is magic itself.
Red London has always been a world of magic; the very best of all the Londons it is full of life and hope, magic and wonder. However in A Conjuring of Light it turns sinister. As Osaron’s power takes over the city life there turns dark, and the magic and wonder at the heart of the kingdom seems to start dying. Everything that was once beautiful is now horrific. V.E. Schwab did a great job creating the world in the first and second books, and in this one she did an amazing job of turning it on its head and creating something powerful and sinister and evil. The small glimpses we get of the streets of Red London outside of the castle show something truly evil at work, the things Osaron is doing only enhanced by the way the world changed in this book.
A Conjuring of Light more than lived up to my expectations. It was the perfect ending for my favourite series and the only issue I had with this book was that it had to end.
It was fast paced from the beginning, dragging me into the story and refusing to let go until the very end. I fell even more in love with the characters and the world and I will definitely be picking up this series again someday soon.
What did you think of A Conjuring of Light? Was it a favourite of yours or could you just not get into the story? Let me know.