It was fun, but it was so generic and it couldn’t be a more obvious rip-off from The Hunger Games and Harry Potter. It isn’t just similar, certain parts are exactly the same.
You Fell In Love With The Victors of The Hunger Games.
Now Prepare To Meet The Villains Of The Blood Veil.
After the publication of a salacious tell-all book, the remote city of Ilvernath is thrust into the spotlight. Tourists, protesters, and reporters alike flock to its spellshops and historic ruins to witness an ancient curse unfold: every generation, seven families name a champion among them to compete in a tournament to the death. The winner awards their family exclusive control over the city's high magick supply, the most powerful resource in the world.
In the past, the villainous Lowes have won nearly every tournament, and their champion is prepared to continue his family's reign. But this year, thanks to the influence of their newfound notoriety, each of the champions has a means to win. Or better yet--a chance to rewrite their story.
But this is a story that must be penned in blood.
Goldsboro GSFF October 2021 pick. Signed, numbered, with sprayed and stencilled edges. Limited to 2000 copies.
- ISBN10 1473233852
- ISBN13 9781473233850
- Publish Date 11 November 2021 (first published 9 November 2021)
- Publish Status Out of Print
- Out of Print 27 September 2022
- Publish Country GB
- Imprint Gollancz
When I saw that it was described as Harry Potter meets Hunger Games I knew I had to read it. And it lived up to all expectations.
It’s got everything from a unique magic system, a high-stakes plot, and gruesome history. It’s told from multiple POVs but it doesn’t drag the plot down. In fact I love how we see a bit of everyone’s reasoning behind their behavior.
There isn’t too much true dark villains, but you do get angsty teens trying to live up to their families expectations who are morally grey. I have a feeling though we will get more villainy come the next book.
Ps. I am team Alistair and none of you can convince me otherwise
It's here! The novel we have all been waiting for (read: the novel that I have been waiting for!). Amanda Foody and Christine Lynn Herman have teamed up to create a new fantasy series for fans, and it all starts with All of Us Villains.
Unbeknownst to many, there is magick in our world. However, the strongest magic is hoarded by seven magickal families. Every generation they come together for a bloody tournament to decide who will wield the most power.
This year it is time for another Blood Moon, which means there are seven new contestants on the line. Traditionally this has always been a battle to the death, with the sole victor deciding the win for their family. However, these contestants don't seem content to follow the rules.
“But that was what this alliance led up to. Not a kiss stolen in the dark, or a priceless gift given without being asked.
Wow. All of Us Villains really did manage to pack a punch, didn't it? I can't say I'm surprised, given that we have The Shadow Game and The Devouring Gray authors working together. I honestly think I loved everything about this novel.
Picture the Hunger Games with magic, family politics, and more personal grudges between the contestants. Now you have a solid idea of what is in store in All of Us Villains. I didn't realize until now that I needed a magical version of The Hunger Games, but now I can't live without it.
All of Us Villains is split into several perspectives, giving us a chance to know most contestants before the Tournament begins. Naturally, it also follows these perspectives as the battle wages, giving us a chance to see the blood and desperation they face.
“You want to know something funny?' he asked. "In a choice between staying here or going home, I'd still choose here. With you.”
As with any split perspective novel, there are some characters that I immediately took to, while others I found myself stepping back and pondering. Together they make a complete whole, and I really enjoyed figuring out how the pieces were going to fall together.
The magical system in this world is brutal and dark, and I'm not ashamed to admit that I kind of love it. I also enjoyed the more modern twists, such as having paparazzi and the like. It was a bit surprising, but I think it made the story stronger on the whole.
However, that ending was straight-up mean. Am I really expected to wait a year (at least!) before finding out what happens next? Obviously, the answer is yes. But I'm going to be counting down the days for the release (and the book doesn't even have a name yet, so it's going to be a hot minute).
Thanks to Tor Teen and #NetGalley for making this book available for review. All opinions expressed are my own.
Read more reviews over at Quirky Cat's Fat Stacks
I have read and enjoyed Christine Lynne Herman’s The Devouring Gray, and I am a fan of books that twist norms, so All of Us Villains intrigued me from the get-go. In a world where magick exists, the book follows seven teens who are thrown into a competition where there will be only one survivor (the Hunger Games vibes are strong here). However, these seven will be fighting for their family’s control over powerful magick.
The concept of a battle to the death over control of a powerful magic source is an interesting one, and the book is just different enough to distinguish itself from The Hunger Games. Another difference between the two books are the multiple points of view that add different layers to the book. The characters all added something new which really helped flesh out the world.
Briony considered herself the perfect champion, and is one of the few characters who actually wanted to be in the competition. She isn’t necessarily blood-thirsty, she is just supremely confident in her ability to win. Of course, there’s a hiccup (no spoilers given, I promise) that changes things completely, leaving her with different choices to make, and many questions that need answering.
There’s Isobel, who didn’t want to be in the competition and is understandably terrified. She is also rather annoying. I can’t put my finger on why she bothered me, but she did. Possibly because she felt a little less fully developed than some of the other characters. Or maybe it’s that her whole budding romance with another champion seemed really odd (Now? While you’re all busy trying not to die?) What do I know, though? I’ve never been in a battle to the death; maybe that’s the best time to go looking for romance. However, she was an odd combination of ruthlessness and selflessness, which was definitely fascinating.
Gavin was easily the “villain” of the villains. He has something to prove and will do just about anything to prove it. I liked that his desperation led to an interaction that allowed one of my favorite characters to develop a little. The fallout from some of his choices also caused things to change in unexpected ways, which I really enjoyed.
Then there’s Alistair, one of my two favorite characters. He’s the one expected to win; powerful, with a dark reputation, he was so much fun to read about! Instead of being a stereotypical villain, he is actually unsure of himself and trying to protect himself by becoming the monster everyone claims he is.
My favorite character by far was Reid McTavish. Not a champion, he actually owns a magic shop which helps several champions with exactly what they need- but what is the price? He reminded me a little of Leland Gaunt from Stephen King’s Needful Things, and I was loving the reminder. I could never quite figure him out, which was brilliant. I know he has an angle, probably one which is deliciously diabolical, and I can’t wait for it to be revealed.
That last sentence brings me to an important point: this ends on a cliffhanger. I know that is not everyone’s thing, so I figure it bears mentioning. I do believe it worked well in this case, as any sort of finalized ending would make book two start in a very odd way.
All of Us Villains was a fun, quick read. While I wouldn’t necessarily say it shattered expectations or was incredible, it was extremely entertaining. At the end of the day, books like that have their place too. I recommend this book to fans of The Hunger Games, readers who like their characters to be morally conflicted, or those who want something diverting and fast-paced.