***I received a copy of this book for free in exchange for an honest review***
SYNOPSIS: It has been two years since Lucie Manette rescued her father and escaped to the Light City from the Dark City, but unrest has been building in the Dark and has finally reached the tipping point. Can Lucie save the people that she loves one more time or will she have to make a sacrifice?
If you can’t tell from the main character’s name, this is a retelling of Charles Dicken’s A Tale of Two Cities which is a book that I love and I think Brennan’s reimagining works well, but at the same time lacks the depth that the source material has. I loved this world with the dichotomy of Light and Dark magic, but because it was just there I didn’t really feel like it was necessary. I wish that we had more of the Light and Dark magic other than what the magic could do and how the people used it for their own purposes. Since the story is solely told through Lucie’s point of view we don’t get to see the growth and change the same way we get to see in the A Tale of Two Cities and if I didn’t already know what was going on I might have been a little thrown off. However, if you had never read/know nothing about A Tale of Two Cities it’s still excellently written and the concept is fascination. One of the things I did love is what she did with Sydney Carton ❤ and Charles Darnay’s physical similarities by creating Ethan Stryker and his doppelganger, Carwyn. I also loved all the little nods to A Tale of Two Cities that were sprinkled throughout while at the same time creating her own story. Sydney Carton is one of my favorite fictional characters, so I was a little concerned with how he was going to be portrayed through Carwyn, but I really shouldn’t have worried because Carwyn is just as amazing. I wish that he had a POV too because his growth and development is such a subtle one that it can feel like it came out of nowhere when he does certain things toward the end. I also loved Ethan more than I thought I would because I don’t remember ever really loving Charles Darnay. I thought Ethan’s steadfastness and heroism was comforting for me as a reader and at the same time he had surprises that showed he was more than just a goody two-shoes. My absolute favorite though is that she gave Lucie some teeth. While I do love Lucie in A Tale of Two Cities (and there is nothing wrong with having a female character more of a thinker than a doer), by making this Lucie more of a warrior Brennan really made this story her own. I loved it when Lucie was wrong and I loved it when she stood up for what she thought was right and I loved it when she played the crowds to her advantage. She has so many dimensions and I almost wish that this was a series just to get more of her. Although I knew all the major plot points, I still found myself enjoying this story once again. It felt like wrapping myself up in a blanket and coming home. I wanted to reread A Tale of Two Cities (in the best way possible) and I hope that this book will help people fall in love with Dickens once again.
Thanks Clarion Books for allowing me to read this book! Buy it here!