These Vicious Masks by Tarun Shanker and Kelly Zekas
Publication Date: February 9, 2016 by Swoon Reads
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
[Special thanks to the publisher for the review copy!]
Evelyn has no interest in marriage and even the dashing Mr. Kent can’t make her want to live up to society’s expectations. She’d much rather assist her beloved sister Rose in becoming the world’s first female doctor. But everything changes the night she meets Sebastian Braddock – not only is the reclusive lord both vexing and surprisingly attractive, he’s also quite possibly mad, and his interest in Rose is galling. So when Evelyn wakes up to discover that Rose has disappeared, she immediately suspects Sebastian.
But then she discovers that Sebastian’s strange tales of special powers are actually true, and that Rose’s kidnappers have worse in mind for her than simply ruining her reputation. Surrounded by secrets, lies, and unprecedented danger, Evelyn has no choice but to trust Sebastian, yet she can’t help but worry that Sebastian’s secrets are the most dangerous of all…
I’ve been reading a lot of contemporary fiction lately, and I’m glad to have an opportunity to read something new.
Historical fiction is not really my cup of tea, but I don’t think this book falls under that. Because this is kick-ass Victorian London. This is phenomenal.
I initially thought the first chapters were boring, only to find out how important the details were. I guess the way to make historical fiction exciting is to do some magic – literally and figuratively.
Tarun and Kelly catapulted me to a time when there were no iPhones, where letters and written notes are the thing. It’s either they had a wide vocabulary of 19th century words or they did their research – or both. What I mean is that I felt I was there – the way people talked and moved, the way the setting was created in my mind…it was just magic. Now I’m wondering how they divided the work, who wrote which character, and how they’ve come up with this adventure that got me hooked. Magic, Tarun and Kelly. Magic. *slow clap*
Magic…powers…ah, I love those! The X-Men feels were real!!! Dr. Beck and his associates, and everyone else who had special abilities. Evelyn and Sebastian are personal favorites, mostly because I SHIP THEM but also because their powers have this connection. ❤
I have to admit all the Miss/Mr. stuff distract me sometimes, but they’re part of the overall setting so I guess I just have to get used to them.
I got hit with shots of adrenaline – especially on those parts that I never saw coming. Especially with Rose…okay, no spoilers. (Just teasers!)
I love the chemistry between Evelyn and Sebastian, the feels are brewing inside me and I want more. These Vicious Masks is not centered on romance, because the point of this book is finding Rose. Throughout the story, friendships were tested and relationships were challenged.
This story also defies societal expectations – with Rose wanting to be the first female doctor (it’s 1882!) even if it meant going against her family’s wishes. I believe this story presented strong female characters, and I love that. 🙂
I’ve missed reading Swoon Reads books, and These Vicious Masks started my Swoon year with a new adventure. Tarun and Kelly crafted a story that readers will remember.
Read this, and so we can wait for the next book together. ❤
Final Rating: 5/5