I actually wasn’t expecting a fourth and fifth book after Fragile Eternity, mainly because I was quite content with the ending and it didn’t seem like there was going to be more. So really, I was totally blindsided when I came across Radiant Shadows, the fourth installment in the Wicked Lovely series.
I’m a little conflicted with the book- on one hand you’ve got that smokin’ hot modern faery world (I always thought it was somewhere in the UK, but then I looked up Huntsdale and realized it’s in the US…) and on the other you’ve got a writing style that’s weighing a little on the confusing side. Since the writing style is consistent throughout the series, it might just be me, but I found myself having to reread parts a few times to understand what was going on. Especially towards the end with the Sorcha and Bananach business. But when it comes to the fictitious world and character development, the writing style is not even a problem. In Radiant Shadows, the characters grow into ones with strong relationships (especially the Dark Court ones), and the faery world develops into a not-fictitious tangible place that I could actually pack up my things and book a ticket to.
But in terms of wickedness, Melissa’s totally hit it right here. Radiant Shadows was my favorite Wicked Lovely book by a long shot, and I’d go as far as to say it’s my number one faery book of all time. (I think I might also mean the Wicked Lovely series in general though, because you just have to watch all the characters grow up!)
Devlin and Ani’s relationship is one like none other. It’s not a crazy love triangle/square (is that even possible?!) like the Summer Court and the Winter Courts’ but it’s not like a Gancanagh thing either. There aren’t even a lot of romance scenes in it. But that’s what makes them so interesting. Aside from Rae (which I think is a little creepy- voyeur anyone?), Dev and Ani totally hit it off with each other as equals and as battle partners and I get the feeling they could totally handle a Bananach or a Gabriel.
I’m going to stop around here because I still want to save a little juice for my future Wicked Lovely review. In terms of plot and characters the book was a thriller, and I’d highly recommend not to read it before you sleep because I did and no matter the cups of warm milk I downed, nothing could get me to calm my heart beat down. The writing style really isn’t a problem, because if you’ve gotten through to the fourth book of a riveting five book series, I’m pretty sure you’ll already have gotten used to the way Melissa Marr writes.
It’s been five years since Ink Exchange, and I still can’t get over Irial.
“She couldn’t lie, but she could avoid the question. “I don’t hurt you, and no one is here to stop me.”
He gave her a wry grin. “Sweetheart, I’m a Gancanagh again, and I have enough self control to keep my emotions locked away from you when I need to.[…]”
The Permanent Monday