Release date: April 5th 2016
In a city divided between opulent luxury in the Light and fierce privations in the Dark, a determined young woman survives by guarding her secrets.
Lucie Manette was born in the Dark half of the city, but careful manipulations won her a home in the Light, celebrity status, and a rich, loving boyfriend. Now she just wants to keep her head down, but her boyfriend has a dark secret of his own—one involving an apparent stranger who is destitute and despised. Lucie alone knows the young men’s deadly connection, and even as the knowledge leads her to make a grave mistake, she can trust no one with the truth.
Blood and secrets alike spill out when revolution erupts. With both halves of the city burning, and mercy nowhere to be found, can Lucie save either boy—or herself?
I was really excited for this book because I loved Sarah Rees Brennan’s characters and humour from the Lynburn Legacies and I was hopeful that this would turn into a book I would enjoy just as much as I enjoyed those three. The description was a little vague so I went into the book not knowing much about the plot except that there would be magic, romance, and violence.
The book started off well. I liked Lucie and Ethan when they were introduced. They seemed like a fun couple in love, very devoted to each other. The sudden appearance of a stranger who looked exactly like Ethan was intriguing and it was the reader’s introduction into the world of doppelgängers, which were created in order to save a person’s life using magic then basically discarded. Doppelgängers had no rights in this world and Lucie found herself wanting to help this one. The whole concept of the book intrigued me. Two cities, one of Light and one of Dark, a girl born in the Dark but with Light magic.
I really enjoyed how snarky the doppelgänger, whose name was Carwyn, was. He was the character who really brought in the humour and was a nice contrast to how serious both Ethan and Lucie were most of the time. Lucie could be frustrating in her decision-making and how easily she gave in when she knew what was going on was wrong, but it also made sense for her character. She gave so much in order to save her father and was under so much pressure all the time. She was lost at times, always questioning herself, especially when her decisions turned out bad. I wish we’d gotten to see more depth from Ethan sooner in the story since it took a while for him to grow on me. He seemed too perfect to be true but that could be we only saw him through Lucie’s eyes and she was in love with him. They were cute together but if he wasn’t around, it was easy to forget him.
There did seem to be quite a bit of info-dumping happening at the beginning. At times it worked well, like the flashbacks showing how Lucie lived in the Dark city and how she came to be in the Light city, but sometimes it felt too much like info-dumping to get it over with instead of letting the information come into the plot naturally. The pacing was also a little uneven. It started off with some action, settled into a bit of a crawl for a long time before really picking up at the end.
Overall, I enjoyed the concept of the two cities with different magic and really loved that there was a character included that could bring the humour that I fell in love with from Sarah Rees Brennan’s other books.
*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.