Eli and Victor were best friends in college, but one fatal day changed all of that, landing Victor in jail and Eli set on a new mission.
This is a fun novel to read, especially if you love anti-heroes. Because Victor and Eli are far from anything close to being heroic. It's slow, and takes a while to get in to, but after a while the book becomes hard to put down. It's intriguing, finding out what happened to tear Eli and Victor apart and set them in the places they currently are.
Like all other Schwab novels that I've read (which is a grand total of two), this book has an air of distance to it, as in the reader doesn't feel as connected to the characters, but at the same time it's really hard to put down. The characters are so... strange and different from anything I've ever read before. Both are psychopaths for sure, and neither of them are even close to being in the right. But that's what make them so compelling, because they both believe they're doing the right thing with such a strong conviction... But then again, doesn't every villain think they're the hero in their own story?
This book's world is so interesting, think of it as something like the world of X-men, but without any good in it. There's no Charles and Magneto, there's just... Well, I don't know the X-men well enough to find the perfect parallels. There are people with powers, and in this world they're called EOs (standing for extraordinary). Part of the fun of reading this book is finding out everyone's different powers and how they got them.
Between Victor and Eli, I can't help but like Eli better. I have no idea why, because they're both horrible choices. But I just sided more with Eli in this book, maybe it's because his character is more appealing to me. Or maybe it's just because I dislike Victor more. I really don't like Victor that much, like he has some redeeming moments in the novel but overall just from the start... He's not a character that I find appealing. Eli's horrible, he really is, but for me, Victor is just worse.
There are plenty of other characters in this book, but all in all the only thing it comes down to it Eli and Victor. While there is a connection between the "side kicks" it started with E and V, and that's how it ends too.
All in all, I'd give Vicious 7.6/10 stars. It was a really good novel, well-written with very unique characters, some of which I still think about and have no idea how I feel about. That's the thing with Schwab... Her books stay with you for a long time after you finish them. It's impossible to stop thinking about them. I hear there's a second book coming out... And I'm eager anticipating it-- this book couldn't have ended the way it did. My biggest problem with the story is the ending. It irks me how it ended, but if there's a sequel... Maybe it can help redeem the book in my mind, because that ending.... It's hard for me to see past the ending. Not saying that the ending is bad enough to make you not read the book at all, I really recommend it, I had a lot of fun reading this one, and I wouldn't want you to miss out on the experience.
Anyway, here's the official synopsis:
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?
As I said earlier, I really don't like the ending of the novel. It irked me so much I had to rant to my father, who was driving us to see my cousin's christening. I expected so much out of this ending, I expected these two great forces to both level each other, that one wouldn't come out on top. I thought it would be a balanced ending. But Victor won, and that irks me. Like I said earlier, I don't love Victor. Not that I love Eli, I was just hoping the ending would be fair for both of them. And yet I do get the ending seems poetic. It ends the way it ended ten years ago, with one sending the other to jail.
I don't know the exact ending I was expecting, but I know I wanted slash thought it would be even, as I keep repeating. I thought either somehow they'd find a way to both die or they'd make up somehow, I had no idea how but I thought that's how it would work out. Because when two great forces collide, shouldn't it come to a standstill?
Also I regret Serena dying, that irks me. Just Eli's side in general lost this one (how is he gonna get out of jail? He's not like Victor who can pain his way out.) But Serena.,. You see her redeeming quality in her telling Sydney to get to safety. I would've liked to see more of her. She irked me at times, but everyone in this book did. I wish we had more time to get to know not just the main characters, but the side ones. All these forces combined? I wish I would be able to see that.
Anyway, that's all. My small rant-ish thing about the end.
Anyway, thanks for reading!