Enne Salta was raised as a proper young lady, and no lady would willingly visit New Reynes, the so-called City of Sin. But when her mother goes missing, Enne must leave her finishing school—and her reputation—behind to follow her mother’s trail to the city where no one survives uncorrupted.
Frightened and alone, her only lead is a name: Levi Glaisyer. Unfortunately, Levi is not the gentleman she expected—he’s a street lord and a con man. Levi is also only one payment away from cleaning up a rapidly unraveling investment scam, so he doesn’t have time to investigate a woman leading a dangerous double life. Enne’s offer of compensation, however, could be the solution to all his problems.
Their search for clues leads them through glamorous casinos, illicit cabarets and into the clutches of a ruthless mafia donna. As Enne unearths an impossible secret about her past, Levi’s enemies catch up to them, ensnaring him in a vicious execution game where the players always lose. To save him, Enne will need to surrender herself to the city…
And she’ll need to play. – Goodreads.com
If you’re a fan of Leigh Bardugo’s Six of Crows series, read no further. Just go now and pre-order this book. Immersive world-building, mesmerizing, flawed, diverse characters, life or death stakes – all done masterfully.
The setting of New Reynes, the City of Sin, is a character unto itself in this book – I felt as if I were experiencing the dark, narrow streets, enticing smells of street vendors, and threats lurking around every corner. The guidebook references at the beginning of each chapter are entertaining and give subtle hints at what’s to come.
Although she may fool you initially, Enne Salta is almost as badass as V.E. Schwab’s Delilah Bard. An unexpected strong resolve and nerves of steel hide behind her ‘proper young lady’ exterior – don’t underestimate her. Levi is pulled in several directions, makes questionable choices, struggles to do the right thing – and could charm a snake.
Ace of Shades offers a fast-paced plot, gangs, casinos, rogues, intrigue, mystery, romance, and magic – and it’s one of my top YA fantasy reads. The second book couldn’t come soon enough. This book is scheduled for publication April 10th, 2018.
Thanks to Edelweiss and the publisher for the digital ARC.