Vicious // A modern fantasy with brilliant morally grey characters

Copy of Copy of Copy of Copy of MINI-REVIEW-15

Hello everyone!

Since Vengeful was just recently released, I knew I HAD to read Vicious. It was a super addictive read that sucked me right in. I am excited to share this review with you guys!

40874032Victor and Eli started out as college roommates—brilliant, arrogant, lonely boys who recognized the same sharpness and ambition in each other. In their senior year, a shared research interest in adrenaline, near-death experiences, and seemingly supernatural events reveals an intriguing possibility: that under the right conditions, someone could develop extraordinary abilities. But when their thesis moves from the academic to the experimental, things go horribly wrong. 

Ten years later, Victor breaks out of prison, determined to catch up to his old friend (now foe), aided by a young girl whose reserved nature obscures a stunning ability. Meanwhile, Eli is on a mission to eradicate every other super-powered person that he can find—aside from his sidekick, an enigmatic woman with an unbreakable will. Armed with terrible power on both sides, driven by the memory of betrayal and loss, the archnemeses have set a course for revenge—but who will be left alive at the end?

The Characters

I loved the characters. Victor was far from your typical good citizen. He was an ex-convict and freshly escaped from prison. Victor was different: Growing up, going to university, he didn’t quite fit in. He didn’t like going to parties, and he didn’t take an interest in his peers… Until he met Eli, the one person who was just as different as he was, who had a daring interest in E.O.s – Extra-Ordinary people.

Now, ten years later, Victor had one goal in mind: hunting down the man who once had been his best friend, now his worst enemy. On his side was Sydney Clark, a quiet child with dark secrets of her own, and Mitch, Victor’s prison mate who, despite his size, had a quick wit and a knack for hacking. These characters each had unique personalities and a story of their own. Though they were not perfect, least of all Victor, they grew on me throughout the novel. I loved the dynamics between them and the bond that held them together.

Although I enjoyed reading about Victor and the other protagonists, I was hoping that the antagonists could be more relatable. Sure, they were downright evil and they did terrible things and I wanted them to get the ending they deserve, but in this novel I hoped that they had more depth.

The Story

The plot was addictive. I loved the premise which drew me right in. (Just read the Goodreads description!? Does it not sound AWESOME!?) The first pages captivated me with questions that kept me reading like an addict throughout the first half, anxious to find the answers.

After the half-way point, the important questions in the plot were answered and things slowed down a notch as the characters prepared to achieve their goal towards the end. Although there were no big surprises compared to my initial predictions about the ending, I liked that the finale was fast-paced and kept me on the edge of my seat.

The Writing

I was in love with VE Schwab’s writing, from the smooth, witty dialogue to her vivid word choices in the descriptions. The world building was phenomenal and the scientific aspects of E.O.’s were well-researched. Even though I came from a health science background, the explanations behind E.O.’s could have convinced me!

Lastly, I listened to the audiobook version, which was well-narrated. No complaints there!

The Bottom Line: 4/5 stars!

Vicious was a rollercoaster ride of a book with a cast of lovable yet morally grey characters that kept me engaged from beginning to end.



Do you prefer young adult or adult fiction? Which book really grabbed you with excellent world building and/or research?

23 responses to “Vicious // A modern fantasy with brilliant morally grey characters”

  1. Lovely review! You’re making me want to read this one even more! The plot does sound incredibly addictive! ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hope that you will enjoy this one when you read it Kelly! I was definitely gripped from the beginning. Thank you ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Yay, I’m so happy you enjoyed it Sophie! I think both Victor and Eli are brilliant, it’s scary how when I read it, I felt sucked and agree with both of them 😅

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Tasya! Yes Victor and Eli were brilliant in this novel, though for me it was Victor who I ultimately sided with at the end lol. Eli just seemed too evil!


  3. Great review for this book Sophie, and I’m really glad you enjoyed Vicious as well. 😀 ❤ I love this book, Victor is an incredible character to follow and I thought it was really interesting the way the story jumped back and forth expanding on the character's different backstories. Normally something like that would pull me out of the story but V.E. Schwab's writing is incredible so obviously if anyone could make it work she could.
    It's a shame you didn't find the antagonists all that relatable, I get what you mean because all the characters were well written but sometimes from certain authors you expect more don't you? 🙂
    Again great review, have you started Vicious yet? If you have what do you think so far? 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I really enjoyed reading about Victor, Syd and Mitch in this book, and I also liked how the story jumped from the past to the present which helped to create a sense of suspense.
      Although I thought the main antagonist was well-written, I found he was hard to relate to because he was so evil and psychopathic lol.
      I finished reading Vengeful (which I had to read right away after Vicious) however I didn’t like it as much as Vicious. The pacing was slower and I felt there were too many characters. I’ll have the review up soon 🙂 Have you read this sequel yet?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. In a way I kind of related to Eli more when we saw him ten years ago. As he and Victor were planning to becomes EOs but before they got their powers.
        Oh that’s a shame about Vengeful, but in a way I kind of get what you mean. For me in the second book the time jumps confused me because there didn’t seem to be a clear difference like there was in Vicious you know; Victor, Sydney and Mitch were on the run over five years so how could you tell the difference.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I was SO confused by the time jumps in Vengeful, and now I am glad that I’m not the only one lol… While Vicious mainly jumped between two points in time, it seemed like Vengeful jumped all over the place which was hard to keep track of. However I did like how there was more of Eli’s story in the second book.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Nope, it was just easier to tell in Vicious where the jumps were because there was such a defined difference, there didn’t seem to be as much of that in Vengeful.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Ahh, meant have you started Vengeful yet, not Vicious.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I am curious about this one since Vengeful has been so hyped, but I am a little nervous because I don’t really read adult books. Your review is so positive though so I might give it a try.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hello Mel! I find that VE schwab’s adult books are easier to get into for me than others in the genre (maybe because she writes YA as well!) Hope that you will enjoy this one when you get a chance to read it 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Great review! I loved this book so much and am currently reading Vengeful!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hello Kaleena! Glad to hear that you enjoyed this first book. Looking forward to hearing your thoughts on Vengeful 🙂


  7. I like both, but sometimes a YA can be too YA for me.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree! Some YA novels are enjoyable for adults too but unfortunately it isn’t always the case


  8. Wonderful review, Sophie, you’re making me want to read this one SO badly!! I really love everything from V.E. Schwab, well, everything I’ve read so far and I always appreciate how talented she is at creating worlds and making them seeming so…. alive and jumping off the page, in a way. I’m glad that happened in that book, too! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes VE Schwab does have a talent when it comes to weaving together beautiful worlds! Hope that you will enjoy this book if you get a chance to read it one day Marie 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I was at a local bookstore a few days ago and I was *so* close to buying all three books in the Shades of Magic trilogy… all I’ve been hearing is how amazing V. E. Schwab’s books are, and it’s about time that I read her books! 😤 I feel like I’m waiting until I can get all copies of her books so that I can binge-read everything, because something tells me that I won’t be able to stop once I start 😊

    This was a great review, Sophie! I can’t wait to read Schwab’s books soon!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I would definitely recommend the SOM series! It was addictive for me, once I started I couldn’t stop 🙂 Of all the books by VE Schwab that I’ve read, I think the SOM series is my favourite so I hope that you will enjoy it when you get the chance to read it!


  10. […] Please note that this is a spoiler-free review for Vengeful. However, there may be spoilers for Vicious which were hard to avoid as I was writing this review. If you haven’t started this series yet, check out my review for Vicious. […]


  11. […] impressed again and again by the amazing characters and the fascinating storyline! (Check out my review […]


  12. […] I wasn’t as impressed by Vengeful which came a decade later. (Check out my reviews for Vicious and […]


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