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Vicious Paperback – 10 Jan 2014

4.4 out of 5 stars 60 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 353 pages
  • Publisher: Titan Books (10 Jan. 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1783290218
  • ISBN-13: 978-1783290215
  • Product Dimensions: 13.1 x 2.4 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (60 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 34,893 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"Supremely plotted and incredibly well-written." --The Independent <br \><br \> "Stark, cynical novel... urgent, insightful prose. Vicious? Yes, that certainly applies. We d also add dangerous and surprising." --SFX <br \><br \> "Vicious has been garnering much pre-publication praise, and rightly so: it's a brilliant exploration of the superhero mythos and a riveting revenge thriller." --The Guardian <br \><br \> "Schwab's artful chronology-bending plotting rivals that of any Iain Banks novel, and her writing is a sly, cynical treat. Vicious grungy spin on timeworn tropes." --Financial Times <br \><br \> "A dynamic and original twist on what it means to be a hero and a villain. A killer from page one... Highly recommended!" --Jonathan Maberry, New York Times bestselling author <br \><br \> "Schwab writes with the fiendish ingenuity, sardonic wit, and twisted imagination of a true supervillian - Greg Cox, New York Times <br \><br \> "Vicious is the superhero novel I ve been waiting for: fresh, merciless, and yes, vicious." --Mira Grant, New York Times bestselling author <br \><br \> "Schwab gathers all the superhero/supervillain tropes and turns them on their sundry heads... I could not put it down." --F. Paul Wilson, New York Times bestselling author <br \><br \> "Vivid, highly original, Vicious is a masterclass in storytelling, a superlative left-field take on familiar superhero tropes that is, quite simply, unmissable." --Adam Christopher, author of Empire State and The Burning Dark <br \><br \> "Vicious is a supremely clever, cruelly addictive thriller easily cloaked in the trappings of genre fiction whilst telling a stunningly powerful, wonderfully absorbing horror story of timeless archetypical passions whilst exploring the nature of heroism, villainy, friendship and family. A magnificent treat for all lovers of the dark fantastic…" -- --Comics Review

"Completely fresh and utterly timeless." -- --SF Crowsnest

"Vivid, highly original, Vicious is a masterclass in storytelling, a superlative left-field take on familiar superhero tropes that is, quite simply, unmissable." --Adam Christopher, author of Empire State and The Burning Dark

About the Author

V.E. Schwab is the author of The Near Witch, a Y.A. fantasy, as well as The Archived, the first book in an upcoming Y.A. supernatural series. This is her first adult book.


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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Victor and Eliot (Eli) are college students. Roommates and best friends, they are constantly competing with each other - whether it's to be top of the class, or for a girl. They have much in common - intelligence, arrogance, and a certain aloofness that holds them apart from their class mates.

For his thesis, Eli chooses to investigate the existence of "ExtraOrdinaries" - EOs - people who have superhuman powers. Examining reported instances, Eli stumbles across a theory as to how an EO develops their ability. Sharing this with Victor, they begin to experiment, unable to resist the possibility of being more than human.

“I want to believe that there's more. That we could be more. Hell, we could be heroes.”

They are successful, but their experimentation has dire consequences...

Ten years later, Victor has been incarcerated and escapes from prison with a single aim - to take his revenge on Eli, who betrayed him.

Vicious jumps around in time between their days in college that set these events in motion, to the current day and Victor's mission to take his revenge. Victor has assembled a ragtag crew to help with his mission:
• Mitch - Victor's cell mate, and a computer hacker
• Sydney - a young girl, and another EO
• Dol - a dog that Sydney has rescued
The back stories of these characters are all laid out beautifully, without resorting to an info dump part way through the story - it blends in seamlessly, telling you all you need to know about those involved.

I really enjoyed Vicious. It's a brilliant, imaginative twist on the theme of superheroes, and an original idea. Unlike many novels featuring those with superhuman abilities, this isn't about good vs.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I recently read the author's newer novel, A Darker Shade of Magic, and enjoyed it without being overwhelmed. I'm generally less interested in superheroes and villains than fantasy worlds, but I was intrigued to see what else she'd written, so decided to give this a go, and actually ended up preferring it. It offers two interesting main characters, both of whom are well developed and broadly believable, and both of whom tread a good line between hero and villain. It's also a clever and surprisingly realistic pseudo-scientific depiction of how people could gain superpowers and what living with them might be like. It has the intriguing idea that superpowers result from near-death experiences, and that the powers relate to what the person was thinking at the time they died/came back, which results in some interesting powers. It was fast moving, kept my guessing and had an well-executed dual timeline.
On the downside, there were some far too convenient plot devices (notably main characters coming across secondary characters with the exact right power at the exact right time) and while it toyed with the idea of there being a very fine line between hero and villain, it was very clear which of the two protagonists we were meant to cheer for.
Overall then, a fun and different read that's definitely worth a look, but that didn't blow me away. i'd give it 3.5 if that were possible.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Who is a hero? Who is a villain? Well the author of this book is both hero and villain. A hero for writing such a brilliant book a villain for making me stay up to past midnight just so I could finish it.

What is the difference between hero and villain is something you will ask yourself constantly throughout the book. I asked myself several times which out of the two friends Eli and Victor was which. It is an answer that you could debate for hours after the book.

There is so much to like about this book it is hard to quantify them all. The fact the author that I believe is female is as addicted to marvel superhero's as myself. The short quick chapters that change timeframe and give you all the background on the characters. You just want to keep reading to see what has happened to these characters and how their lives develop. The character development of these characters is the real strength of this book. Not just the two lead characters but the supporting cast. They are all well developed and likeable flaws and all.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book and am definitely going to be looking for more from this author. If you like superhero's, good character development and a good story that is quick and easy to read then I must urge you to pick this up.

"Victor was the first to speak, and when he did, it was with an eloquence and composure perfectly befitting the situation."
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Review originally posted on my book blog: https://afrolicthroughfiction.wordpress.com/2015/10/24/vicious-by-v-e-schwab/

RATED 4.5/5 STARS

After reading this book I’ve decided to read every single story that Victoria Schwab has ever written. I decided to pick this up because i wanted to see if I would enjoy her writing as much in a different story, since I have read A Darker Shade of magic beforehand, and I have to say I am very impressed.

This was a story full of revenge and mystery, much like any superhero story. I wasn’t sure whether I’d enjoy the superhero aspect, because I haven’t read a superhero novel before, but I thought it was very cleverly planned out. I found the story to be entirely believable, since the theory behind superheroes starts out as a science experiment. Throughout the book there are explanations to why different people have different abilities, and the knowledge behind it all seems so thoroughly thought out, I had no problem with thinking it to be true. Although the story is based on science, the wording never became too complex or overwhelming, so it was easy enough for me to keep track of the science even though I personally don’t know anything about chemistry and biology.

The thing I found most interesting about this book – and I think anyone who’s read it will agree – is the characters.

Every single character in this book is completely different from the next. Some were controlling or obsessive, almost paranoid. Some collected and calm, but possibly hiding more. Some jealous or easily lead, only to overcome their own doubts. There were just SO many different personalities, and I loved each character for their own reasons.
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