Title: Ace of Shades (The Shadow Game, #1)
Author: Amanda Foody
Date: April 10th 2018
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Ace of Shades by Amanda Foody is a Young Adult fantasy book set in New Reynes, the City of Sin. Enne Salta has decided to go in search of her missing mother and her only clue is a name: Levi Glaisyer. However, right after arriving in the most dangerous city in the world, she encounters problems and the person that can help her is not as she quite imagined it.
First of all, I need to describe a little the setting, otherwise you will be confused by some parts of my review! New Reynes is divided between North and South and there are three gangs:
- The Scarhands: the smugglers (characterized by scars on their palms and wrists)
- The Irons: the cheats (who possess the tattoo of a club)
- The Doves: the assassins (their hair are white)
And then, there are two casino families: the Augustines and the Torrens.
Every person has two talents inherited by their parents. One is stronger than the other and there are two types of talents, those that could be developed by everyone and those that were rarer and couldn’t be learned.
She hadn’t asked for this. She wasn’t looking to impress anyone or win anything.
But she’d spent her entire life fighting for next to last. So if she had to play, she would not lose.
She would not break.
Enne Salta is an uptight girl whose dream is to debut into society. But no-one can resist New Reynes’ charm, especially a person who never felt herself belonging to Bellamy’s high society. I loved her, though I was a little taken aback by her sudden change throughout the first part of the novel.
Levi is so precious! A man who had to fight in order to survive and now he strikes to become one of the most powerful people in the City of Sin. He’s troubled by his past and by his current situation but he still hopes things will turn for the better. Despite having suffered so much, he’s still kind and wants the best for his gang.
There were also Lola and Jac, secondary characters who were both important in the story. I admired them because they protected Levi and Enne and together they seemed a big ol’ softy group.
He’d left a depressing life behind to build something better in this city. He’d bet everything he had in the game, and he’s lost. But the city wouldn’t grieve for him.
The city would find some new con man, some new boy who called himself lord, and the city would play again.
The story is fast-paced with twists and new information in every chapter. It keeps you on edge until you finish the book before you can even notice that too much time has passed. The writing style was so good!
If you’re looking for a fantasy book with magic, mafia-like families and a city that resembles Las Vegas, though it has its own attractions, Amanda Foody’s second novel is for you. I give Ace of Shades 5 out of 5 stars.
About the author
Amanda Foody has always considered imagination to be our best attempt at magic. After spending her childhood longing to attend Hogwarts, she now loves to write about immersive settings and characters grappling with insurmountable destinies. Currently, she works as a tax accountant in Philadelphia, PA, surrounded by her many siblings and many books.
She is the author of two published novels, Daughter of the Burning City and Ace of Shades. The next books of The Shadow Game trilogy will release in 2019 and 2020.