It is once again time for a book review. whoop, whoop! and this time it is for a type of book that I really don’t read very often and that is a graphic novel/comic. So, without further ado, here is my review for Shades Of Magic: Vol 1 (The Steel Prince) by V E Schwab and Andrea Olimpieri. Let’s do this!
If you know me at all then you will know that A Darker Shade Of Magic is my all-time favourite book series (expect perhaps Potter). I love it with all my heart and I am actually currently in the middle of a reread of it. so naturally when I found out that Schwab was making a prequel series in graphic novel format, I knew that I had to read it. I have been eagerly awaiting this book for months and months (I decided to wait until the bind up of volumes 1-4 instead of buying the individual comics as it is cheaper and a lot easy to get a hold off) and honestly, now that I have it and have read it, I am a little bit disappointed…
Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t bad. Not by any means. But it wasn’t what I was hoping for either. My main issue with it was that it was too short and too rushed. The actual story, like all of Schwab’s work, was really interesting and complex, but it was so rushed that I ended up not really feeling like I had got the whole story. it left me very wanting. It just wasn’t developed enough. I feel like this story should have been longer. each individual instalment should have been a bit longer and they probably could have done with having at least 2 or 3 more instalments in the story. 4 just wasn’t enough. it meant that I really didn’t connect to the story or feel particularly invested it. Also, because of this underdeveloped nature, if you haven’t read the A Darker Shade Of Magic trilogy, I think that you will really struggle with this graphic novel. There is zero world building and very little explanations of, well, anything.
I also found that it made it hard to connect to the characters. hell, at times I struggled to remember who was who because of how little we got to know them. which again, was disappointing. These characters already hold so much potential but we just didn’t get to really see it at all. I am really hoping that the next instalment (which is going to be the Knight Of Knives story) develops the characters more and expands upon the storylines a bit better. Just slow it down a bit. There is being fast paced and being rushed. One I like, the other I don’t.
But, what I did really like about this graphic novel was the art. I personally really liked it. it took me a few pages to get used to it, but I did really like it. I am used to more manga style art work, black and white, sharp lines, you know the drill, but this was far more art like, if that makes sense. It was full colour, centred around a red colour pallet, and a dark one at that, with very typically sketchy art. It wasn’t what you usually see in graphic novels, but I did really like it.
Overall, I was disappointed by this novel. Not enough to not continue reading them as they come out, but enough that I am not itching for the next instalment.
3 out of 5
And there we go. it is such a shame that I didn’t enjoy this more. it was one of my most highly anticipate releases of 2019. Have you read this one yet? what did you think about it? I’ve read a few reviews and my thoughts seem to be shared by many others, I am interested to know if you feel that same. I hope that you have enjoyed todays post and I will see you all again very soon.