Vicious by V.E. Schwab – Review

Welcome to my first post of April. Today, I’m going to be reviewing Vicious by V.E. Schwab. Vicious is a part sci-fi, part paranormal, part fantasy story with an amazing anti-hero and a great plot.

Book: Vicious

Author: V.E. Schwab

Rating: ★★★★☆

Summary: 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?


Minor spoilers possibly ahead: Read at your own risk!


Quote: “Plenty of humans were monstrous, and plenty of monsters knew how to play at being human.”

*Plot. I loved the scientific theories and aspects to the story. The possibility of humans becoming superheroes by surviving near death experiences was very interesting. Even though it can’t happen in real life, it was fun to see how it could turn out in this book.

To help with understanding this, I’m going to give a brief explanation of how EO’s, or ExtraOrdinary, humans work. After surviving a near death experience, a person would wake up with super powers. For example, after electrocuting himself, Victor was able to turn pain on and off for himself and others. Eli, after freezing himself to the very brink of death, could heal himself after getting hurt.

*Characters. Victor is a villain, but a good one. His supposed best friend, Eli, turned him in after Victor accidentally killed Eli’s girlfriend Angie. After Victor breaks out of prison ten years later, he is determined to destroy Eli however he possibly can. I was cheering for Victor the whole time because as the story progresses, you realize how evil Eli really is, and you also grow to feel somewhat sympathetic for Victor. There are two other characters that make up Victor’s team: Mitch, a huge and imposing tattoo-covered hacker, and Sydney, a tough young girl who is also an EO. Her power is to bring back the dead. I loved the relationship between the three of them, and Sydney was one of my favorite characters because of how young, sweet, and innocent she was.

*Timeline. I liked how the story flipped back and forth between the present, 10 years before, and also between the several different characters. It was nice to see everyone’s perspective of what happened and what was happening.

*The Ending. I was very satisfied with the ending, and I’m very curious to see what will happen in the next book.

Quote: “When no one understands, that’s usually a good sign that you’re wrong.”

*Star-minus. This was great, and I really liked it, but I don’t really feel that ‘five star’ feeling with this book. I wasn’t overly attached to the characters or the story. However, that shouldn’t deter you from trying this out!

Quote: “The absence of pain led to an absence of fear, and the absence of fear led to a disregard for consequences.”

Overall, I really enjoyed this, but it wasn’t a five star for me. However, I would still recommend it and I hope you enjoy it if you read it!

One sentence summary: An interesting read with great characters, and an amazing plot!

Overall, 4 stars.


Have you read Vicious? What did you think? Do you have any other suggestions for books such as this? Let’s chat in the comments!

5 thoughts on “Vicious by V.E. Schwab – Review

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