VICIOUS REVIEW: An Open Letter to V.E. Schwab

Vicious by V.E. Schwab

Dear V. E. Schwab,

Even though I’m a librarian and ardent reader, these days, I haven’t been able to devour as much as I’ve liked. But once VICIOUS arrived in my mailbox, I just had to flip my desk, shove everything aside and dive in. In fact, that’s why I’m writing. I can’t help myself. Sometimes, you just gotta write a heartfelt fan letter. This is that letter. Forgive me if I embarrass myself.

It’s no secret that I’ve been really looking forward to reading VICIOUS. But with great anticipation, there’s comes something else, too–that little quaver of trepidation. You think, what if I don’t love it as much as I want to? What if I’ve built up my expectations too much? I’d really hung my hopes on this one, V.E. I was praying for a good book. But…I didn’t get one. Instead, I got a MASTERPIECE. A juggernaut, comet-tail rocket ride fueled by sheer brilliance of storytelling.

Truth be told, when I turned the last page of VICIOUS and read the last line, I realized something. I knew, deep in my bookish old bones that this novel was exactly the right kind of book. I felt almost as if it was written just for me. And that is what fiction is supposed to be, isn’t it? A great story swallows us up and refuses to leave us. It’s an unshakeable thing. VICIOUS is that to me.

In it, there are heroes masquerading as villains and villains who wear a hero’s smile, and there’s the realization that both figures duel in half-light inside our hearts. And the story…Oh. My. Cumberbatch, the story. It’s The Prestige and X-Men and The Count of Monte Cristo and so much more. Under the crackling surface of this plot, so many themes and ideas and ideals swirl and spark and burn and I am powerless to resist. I am deliriously in love with the world you created, and you’ve spoiled me for at least the next dozen books. From here on out, I’m going to be comparing novels to this one. I’ll be tsk-ing, pining for Victor (who I love more than I ought) and wondering what Sydney and Eli and Mitch are up to. You have RUINED me, and for that, I thank you.

In case you ever doubted, your readers are here, hanging until the last page. We beg of you; please keep going, we can hardly wait. Your words matter.

Quite Seriously and Sincerely and Not Even a Little Bit Kidding,


About Jenny Martin

Librarian, Writer, Beatlemaniac
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