Author: V.E. Schwab
Genre: Fantasy, Adult
My Rating:5 stars
I can’t believe some people had to wait 5 years for this book! I mean, it would have been 100% worth the wait, but I won’t deny how happy I was that I could dive right into it after finishing Vicious.
– Victor’s habit of collecting strays, their misfit family, Dol the dog
– lots of new types of EOs, mobsters, a secret government organization
-antiheroes everywhere, unpredictable twists
– small continuity errors that bugged me
The story is set five years after the events of Vicious, with chapters detailing what happened in the interim years, and we are still following a lot of the same characters- with a few new ones thrown in. There is a return of the author’s flashback chapters, a style I really enjoy, and we again get glimpses into past and future events that are eventually pieced together. The author definitely has a talent for creating morally questionable characters that you find yourself liking and sympathizing with, and that talent shone through in this installment.
“A trail of bodies, or a trail of witnesses—that was the choice they were faced with. Neither option was ideal, but at least corpses couldn’t give statements. Victor’s solution was logical, but Sydney wasn’t having it.
“If you kill all the EOs you meet,” she said, “how are you better than Eli?”
There were some small continuity errors that bugged me, and I even went back to the previous book to check and see if I was wrong, but there were some things that changed. I first noticed an error in Vicious when Sydney is said to be wearing rainbow leggings, but later they are referred to as just blue. Now, in Vengeful, Victor talks about spending “four years in a solitary cell, and another six in standard”, when in Vicious it was “Five years in isolation .. Four years in integration .. And the last seven months .. to plan this moment”. Like I said, small things, but they stood out to me.
Sydney, Victor, Mitch, and Dol have formed a little misfit family, and I love seeing them all together. (“When Victor walked in, he was met by the smell of melted cheese and the crack of an explosion on the large TV. Sydney was perched on the arm of the couch, tossing Dol pieces of popcorn while Mitch stood at the kitchen counter, arranging candles on top of a chocolate cake. The scene was so extraordinarily . . . normal.”) Their cute little “family” is definitely not innocent, and they partake in plenty of illegal and questionable activities together, but Mitch and Victor acting as “foster” parents to Syd was super adorable.
“Maybe we are broken. But we put ourselves back together. We survived. That’s what makes us so powerful. And as for family—well, blood is always family, but family doesn’t always have to be blood.”
Instead of this being a story focused totally on revenge, we’re given a new set of events the drive the plot, and I was happy with the direction it took. There was a bit of a murder mystery plot (even though we knew who was behind everything), and there were a bunch of different character threads that all ended up tying into each other. The ending was a bit disappointing because a lot of things were left pretty open-ended, but overall I was satisfied with the story, and would love to see more from this world in the future!