Victor 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?
Blurb from Goodreads, photo from yours truly
This book, you guys. This. Book. Where do I even begin??
Let’s start with the idea. ExtraOrdinary’s, people who have come back from death to have special powers. A tad creepy, but very cool. At least, until Eli and Victor get involved. It takes a special sort of crazy to think it’s a good idea to risk dying for the sake of some powers. These two are exactly that kind of crazy, which is what makes this book the masterpiece that it is. Yes, they’re willing to make that risk, and that’s what makes up the first part of this book. Schwab’s explanation of the EO’s was brilliantly done. Of course, I was full of questions to begin with, but if you’re patient enough to let the book go on, all the questions will be answered by the end. The pair come across so many different EO’s with such a broad range of powers, and I was sort of obsessed with discovering these new characters. And yes, a little part of me was curious to know what my power would be. I’m just hoping I don’t have to find out any time soon!
Like I said before, the characters were what really made this book. We see the majority of the book through Victor’s perspective (in third person), but there are also glimpses from Sydney, her sister Serena, Mitch, and of
course Eli. The collection of different points of view all went together to make sure there were no questions left unanswered. Victor and Eli were the main characters, but the supporting cast made them all the more interesting. Although, on their own, they were definitely interesting enough. Eli is completely insane. There’s no nice way to go about saying that – Eli Ever is mental. He’s somehow convinced himself that going around killing people is an excusable thing to do. Not just excusable, but right . Victor isn’t nearly as bad, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t crazy too. They talk about something going missing when you die, and you can definitely see it in these two characters. Sydney seems to still be normal, which makes me wonder if these two were a bit insane before they died? That’s something I’d really love to explore more, but it wasn’t really possible to do that in this book.
The last thing that made this book impossible to put down was the writing. I was hooked from page one (even reading that page in a tent at 2 in the morning…). There’s twist after twist, and the book is full of action. With the different perspectives, there was always something new to find out about, and a different way of thinking if you didn’t like a particular character. And with both our hero and villain being crazy, you have no idea what either of them could do next. The last few chapters had me on the edge of my seat, even though if I’d stopped to think about it I could have probably worked out how it was all going to end up. The main thing this book made me want to do was go and pick up EVERY SINGLE ONE of Schwab’s other books. If this one is that good, the rest of them must surely be as brilliant?
Challenges it fits: E book challenge (1), Rock my TBR (1), Flights of Fantasy (1), Popsugar (sci-fi)
Have any of you read Vicious? If so, what did you think of it? Would you recommend any of her other books? Most importantly, do you like my slightly different form of review?