Published November 2012|Published by Penguin Books|448 pages|Borrowed the paperback from a friend
Series? Nope! I read a stand-alone for once
Genre: Adult: Mystery/Time Travel/Something about it feels like a fantasy and paranormal novel…so that too!
Goodreads.com Summary: Once a city of enormous wealth and culture, Prague was home to emperors, alchemists, astronomers, and, as it’s whispered, hell portals. When music student Sarah Weston lands a summer job at Prague Castle cataloging Beethoven’s manuscripts, she has no idea how dangerous her life is about to become. Prague is a threshold, Sarah is warned, and it is steeped in blood.
Soon after Sarah arrives, strange things begin to happen. She learns that her mentor, who was working at the castle, may not have committed suicide after all. Could his cryptic notes be warnings? As Sarah parses his clues about Beethoven’s “Immortal Beloved,” she manages to get arrested, to have tantric sex in a public fountain, and to discover a time-warping drug. She also catches the attention of a four-hundred-year-old dwarf, the handsome Prince Max, and a powerful U.S. senator with secrets she will do anything to hide.
City of Dark Magic could be called a rom-com paranormal suspense novel—or it could simply be called one of the most entertaining novels of the year.
This was a really entertaining read. For reals, I wasn’t sure about it for most of the book, but by the end…I was definitely interested. I love the back-drop of Prague, and the places were described so well! Plus, I like that there were a lot of different scholars working on different parts of the museum, and that we got to saw bits and pieces of that.
I love that it’s a mash-up, and that I had trouble exactly pin-pointing which genre (or genres, as it would be) this book falls into. And there’s so much going on that any kind of synopsis I could come up with will not fully describe the entertainment that is City Of Dark Magic. I was definitely intrigued by the toenail-induced time travel. Yes, I just said toenail-induced time travel. And if you’re wondering, it actually makes sense…in a totally weird way. I loved the focus on Beethoven and his connection to, well, a lot of different things in the book.
There was lot going on, with quite a few characters, and while it was irritating at times, it really did make sense and come together at the end. Sometimes, it almost felt like too many things were going on. And I was expecting something involving magic…but perhaps that is in the music and the places and the people. Because there is something magical about the book in general. Sarah was interesting, but Nico was a lot of fun.
I was kept guessing, and I liked that I wasn’t completely sure what was going on until I was pretty much finished with the book.
If you liked The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, you’ll like City Of Dark Magic. It was fun, full of mystery and adventure, and well-worth the hours I spent reading it. I didn’t completely love it, but it was still enjoyable. It gets 4 stars.