A Gathering of Shadows by V. E. Schwab

The basics

Title: A Gathering of Shadows


Series: A Darker Shade of Magic #2

- A Darker Shade of Magic (2015)
- A Gathering of Shadows (2016)
- A Conjuring of Light (2017)

Add it: Goodreads

Goodreads Summary:

Four months have passed since the shadow stone fell into Kell’s possession. Four months since his path crossed with Delilah Bard. Four months since Rhy was wounded and the Dane twins fell, and the stone was cast with Holland’s dying body through the rift, and into Black London.

In many ways, things have almost returned to normal, though Rhy is more sober, and Kell is now plagued by his guilt. Restless, and having given up smuggling, Kell is visited by dreams of ominous magical events, waking only to think of Lila, who disappeared from the docks like she always meant to do. As Red London finalizes preparations for the Element Games—an extravagant international competition of magic, meant to entertain and keep healthy the ties between neighboring countries—a certain pirate ship draws closer, carrying old friends back into port.

But while Red London is caught up in the pageantry and thrills of the Games, another London is coming back to life, and those who were thought to be forever gone have returned. After all, a shadow that was gone in the night reappears in the morning, and so it seems Black London has risen again—meaning that another London must fall.

Here is a spoiler summary of what happened in A Gathering of Shadows by V. E. Schwab to help refresh your memory before you read the sequel.

what happened in A Gathering of Shadows

  • Lila has joined a crew on a ship called Night Spire. She meets the captain, Alucard, who everyone fangirls about. Alucard offers to teach Lila magic.
  • People in Red London blame Kell for the Black Night.
  • Kell hears that Alucard is returning to Red London for a tournament.
  • Rhy gets into a fight and Kell goes to save him.
  • Holland makes a triumphant return as the king of White London. He’s now sharing his body with Osaron, a being from Black London.
  • Lila plans to compete in the tournament.
  • Rhy talks Kell into competing as a guy called Kamerov Loste.
  • A princess called Cora fancies Kell.
  • Lila learns that Alucard is from a royal family.
  • Kell starts training for the tournament.
  • Kell learns that Lila is back.
  • Lila gets rid of a contestant called Elsor so she can take his place in the tournament. Alucard realises what she has done and tells her she’s no longer welcome on his ship.
  • Holland wants to find a new body for Osaron – Kell’s body.
  • It’s revealed that Alucard is Rhy’s ex. Kell is not a fan.
  • The king has placed Kell under house arrest in order to protect Rhy, since the two are linked.
  • Kell, Lila, and Alucard smash the first two rounds of the tournament.
  • Lila realises that Kell is disguised as Kamerov Loste.
  • Rhy tells Kell he has to lose the next round so he isn’t unmasked.
  • Holland creates a collar that blocks the wearer from using magic.
  • Kell lets Lila win the next round.
  • Lila and Kell dance at the celebratory ball. They kiss.
  • Kell tries to get Lila to peace out of the tournament but she says no.
  • Ojka, Holland’s Antari, comes to Red London to look for Kell.
  • Kell goes to see Lila after she is injured in the tournament. The king has Kell arrested for leaving the castle. When he is released, Kell tells the king that he’ll be leaving once the tournament is over.
  • Ojka tricks Kell into going to White London.
  • Holland puts the blocking collar on Kell, which causes issues with the link between him and Rhy.
  • Kell refuses to let Osaron into his body.

how did it end?

Rhy is dying and it’s all very sad. Alucard and Lila realise that this means Kell is in trouble, and Lila thinks he’s in White London. Osaron no longer wants to share (rude) so he TAKES OVER HOLLAND’S BODY (ALSO RUDE). Osaron goes to Red London, leaving Kell behind. Lila tries to find Kell using blood magic. Then the book ends. DUN DUN DUN.

anything else

Antari: A world-hopper who can travel between the four parallel worlds. There are only two of them in existence – Kell and Holland. They each have one black demon eye of awesomeness.
Black London: A place of great magic, closest to the source (of all evil *cough*). It’s been closed off because people and magic went crazy and that’s why inter-London travel is no longer permitted. Except for Kell and Holland, obviously.
White London: The closest London to Black London. People here are hella creepy and they steal magic from people by drinking their blood and such. Ruled by the Dane twins until the end of the book.
Red London: Kell’s home!London. Magic exists here and people live pretty good lives.
Grey London: Magic is incredibly rare here but I’m pretty sure Lila got some.

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