Previous novels by Victoria (V.E.) Schwab were intended for adults and teens, City of Ghosts was written for a middle grade audience. I give it a three stars for being a solid book but no higher as it shared several concepts with her “Monsters of Verity” duology, which were the most recent books of Ms. Schwab’s that I’ve read. As a result, City of Ghosts didn’t feel very fresh to me, especially when you take into account the variety of her collected works.
In City of Ghosts, as in “Monsters of Verity”, you have a loner girl, an unnatural being for a companion, glowing life force visible only to a few, magical music, and people with special skills to remove the supernatural. That aside it is an entertaining read with some interesting concepts on ghosts. One aspect of the book I liked in particular was Cassidy, our plucky female protagonist, learning about the difference between American and UK terminology. I grew up in a household that regularly watched British programs and thus have always had a familiarity with biscuit verses cookie, flat verses apartment, etc. Cassidy is encountering these terms for the first time in Edinburgh and her reactions are amusing as she continues to come across new word usage throughout the book.
From Ysakitty: City of Ghosts is a thrilling adventure for young readers and old. When I read it, I was intrigued by it all and thoroughly enjoyed it. I really liked the relationship between Cassidy and Jacob. No one else could see Jacob except Cassidy, and one other person, so they had a special bond and it was nice to read about their friendship. I didn’t know that Scotland had a brutal past so it was interesting to learn a bit of it’s history. Once the book ended I was sad because I wanted more story. However, I became super excited once I learned that there is going to be a sequel. I give this book 4 stars, it’s really good and I’ll definitely be reading it again when the sequel comes out.