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Cabaret meets Cassandra Clare-a haunting magical thriller set in a riveting 1930s-esque world.This sounds fantastic, right? And I am happy to report that, in my oh so humble opinion, it is pretty fantastic. It's hard to peg just what Dark Metropolis is. Is it a zombie novel? Science fiction? Historical fantasy? Luckily, you don't have to know or care what we should label Dark Metropolis as in order to enjoy it. With a fascinating premise, a plot that offers a lot in reveals, and a mystery that grabs you, Dark Metropolis is a thrilling read.
Sixteen-year-old Thea Holder's mother is cursed with a spell that's driving her mad, and whenever they touch, Thea is chilled by the magic, too. With no one else to contribute, Thea must make a living for both of them in a sinister city, where danger lurks and greed rules.
Thea spends her nights waitressing at the decadent Telephone Club attending to the glitzy clientele. But when her best friend, Nan, vanishes, Thea is compelled to find her. She meets Freddy, a young, magnetic patron at the club, and he agrees to help her uncover the city's secrets-even while he hides secrets of his own.
Together, they find a whole new side of the city. Unrest is brewing behind closed doors as whispers of a gruesome magic spread. And if they're not careful, the heartless masterminds behind the growing disappearances will be after them, too.
Perfect for fans of Cassandra Clare, this is a chilling thriller with a touch of magic where the dead don't always seem to stay that way.
Be warned, though, this sounds like Thea's story. And while everything is, in a lot of ways, brought about by Thea's curiosity and is centered around her, this story is much more Nan's and Freddy's than you could guess from the synopsis. With alternating POVs from the three, you'll get to know a lot more than just Thea.
I was so engrossed in the world Jaclyn Dolamore created. I didn't know when I was reading, but it's an alternate world based on Berlin in 1927 (which clears up so much!). That means this is a post-WWI world, but a world without the Great Depression and WWII. The world created has its share of glitz and glamour, Roaring Twenties-style, but there's a darker side that's always lurking, a tone that reminds you constantly there's more going on in this city than anyone knows. There's deep unrest and unhappiness. The magic isn't explained much, but its existence is well-known. It's a world I couldn't get enough of or learn enough about.
It's so hard to talk about certain things without revealing spoilers! But, suffice to say, the magic that's making our zombies is just as simple, fascinating, heartbreaking, lovely, and complicated as can be. There's love in its history and potential, but it's been perverted into something dark and, while useful to the city itself, terrible. The villain is dastardly enough to make you hate him, but then you can't help but understand his predicament and see the purpose in what he does. I love nothing more than a villain with layers, whom you can sympathize with in some way.
I could go on and on about this book, but I'd rather you quit reading my review and get yourself a copy so we can talk about it together! Dark Metropolis gives you glitz and gore, living and dead, good and evil (though neither is thoroughly one), and hooks you with its altogether intriguing premise and dark world.
Jaclyn Dolamore was homeschooled in a hippie sort of way and spent her childhood reading as many books as her skinny nerd-body could lug from the library and playing elaborate pretend games with her sister Kate. She skipped college and spent eight years drudging through retail jobs, developing her thrifty cooking skills and pursuing a lifelong writing dream. She has a passion for history, thrift stores, vintage dresses, David Bowie, drawing, and organic food. She lives with her partner and plot-sounding-board, Dade, and two black tabbies who have ruined her carpeting.
Her skin remained pale, but life flowed back into it. He could feel the return of her spirit and, finally, see the flutter of eyelids that had probably been pressed shut by another hand not long ago.
She took a breath and coughed. He tightened his hand on hers and helped her sit up.
"Where am I?" She seemed disoriented, which was normal, and angry, which was also normal enough. "What is this place?"
"Workroom? Are you a doctor?" she said. "You don't look any older than I am."
She hunched forward, eyes darting around the room, across the shelves lined with vials and powders. Her glance was furtive and troubled.
"Who are you?" she asked.
Uncle said he should never tell anyone who he was or exactly what he could do. People will do anything for immortality, he said. They'd tear out your liver and eat it if they thought it would keep them from death. You must keep your secrets. "I'm here to help you."
Her eyes shot open, as if she suddenly remembered something important. "You have to let them go."
"Let who go?" Her intensity gave him pause.
She reached under her coat and released the knot of her necktie with one tug. Her dress was familiar. Too familiar. Dark blue, white collar, slim necktie--the same clothing the Telephone Club waitress had worn the previous night. Then, in one quick motion, she pulled the necktie around his neck.
He jerked away from the table, pain jabbing through him as she tightened her grip around his windpipe, and she came with him. Where were the guards? They were supposed to be right outside the door! He reached back and grabbed fistfuls of her jacket, and when that failed to break her hold, he stomped his heel on her toes. She gasped, but she didn't let go.
The door burst open; the sound of their struggle must have finally alerted the guards, two tall men in crisp uniforms. They carried guns bud didn't need them. In a moment, they had pulled the tie from her grasp and caught her arms behind her back.
Her hazel eyes were subdued now, almost emotionless. "You're the one," she said. "You're the one she warned me about."
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