I’ve been such a huge fan of V. E. Schwab for so long, I’m thrilled when I got the opportunity to ask her about her Bookish Firsts! If you didn’t gather from my review yesterday, I absolutely LOVED this book. In honour of it, I ask Victoria some A Darker Shade of Magic specific ‘firsts’ questions:
With author V. E. Schwab
What is the first book you ever read/remember reading?
The Boxcar Children series (yes, every single one of them) by Gertrude Chandler Warner
What is the first book you wrote (can be published or unpublished)?
I was 19 when I wrote a very strange book called THE SHADOW MILE, which I will probably never revisit, but which taught me so much about the process, including the simple fact that I was capable of finishing a book. TSM was about a girl who walks through a door and ends up in the land of the dead, where Death tries to con her into staying and taking Death’s place.
What was your first inspiration for this story?
Kell and Lila came to me in the very first idea for the very first scene. I was pondering and playing and had the image of a magician walking through a wall and colliding with a girl dressed as a boy street thief. It all came from that one image.
If you had Kell’s abilities, which London would you visit first and why?
Red London, absolutely, because it has the best food and fashion, and the most magic.
About A Darker Shade of Magic
Kell is one of the last Travelers—rare magicians who choose a parallel universe to visit.
Grey London is dirty, boring, lacks magic, ruled by mad King George. Red London is where life and magic are revered, and the Maresh Dynasty presides over a flourishing empire. White London is ruled by whoever has murdered their way to the throne. People fight to control magic, and the magic fights back, draining the city to its very bones. Once there was Black London – but no one speaks of that now.
Officially, Kell is the Red Traveler, personal ambassador and adopted Prince of Red London, carrying the monthly correspondences between royals of each London. Unofficially, Kell smuggles for those willing to pay for even a glimpse of a world they’ll never see. This dangerous hobby sets him up for accidental treason. Fleeing into Grey London, Kell runs afoul of Delilah Bard, a cut-purse with lofty aspirations. She robs him, saves him from a dangerous enemy, then forces him to another world for her ‘proper adventure’.
But perilous magic is afoot, and treachery lurks at every turn. To save all of the worlds, Kell and Lila will first need to stay alive — trickier than they hoped.
About V.E. Schwab
V.E. Schwab is the bestselling author of Vicious, which was a Publishers Weekly Best Book of 2013, an Amazon Best Book of the Year (as well as Best Book of the Month), a semi-finalist in the Goodreads Choice 2013 Book Awards, and the ALA top pick for Fantasy for their 2014 reading list. It was also noted in various author best-of lists, from Laini Taylor to Chuck Wendig. She is also the author of The Near Witch, The Archived, and The Unbound.
We have a copy of A Darker Shade of Magic to giveaway on the blog, courtesy of Titan Books. Simply enter using the Rafflecopter below. This is open to UK participants only.