Summary: From the moment their senior thesis regarding extraordinary abilities went horribly wrong, college roommates Victor and Eli have had it out for each other. Ten years after their mishap, Victor has just broken out of prison and with the help of his cellmate and a young girl who has a supernatural ability, he’s ready to get his revenge on Eli. Meanwhile, Eli, aided by a college student with her own agenda, hunts down individuals who have extraordinary abilities. With revenge and supernatural power on both of their sides, the question is who will survive when these two foes finally meet?
Star Rating: 5/5 Stars
Cover Lust?: Yes!The cover is really cool because it depicts a scene that occurs early on in the book
My Thoughts: Vicious was such a dark and thrilling novel. Just from reading this book alone, I’ve come to the conclusion that Victoria Schwab is the QUEEN of writing villainous point of views. There’s no denying that Eli and Victor themselves, and their relationship, are super-messed up. They were both ultimately driven by jealously– Victor being jealous of Eli for always being the best, and Eli being jealous of Victor for always being one step ahead. I loved how Schwab told their story by transitioning between the past and the present. We see Victor and Eli in college (aka everything hits the fan) and after college (aka everything can get even worse). I definitely rooted for Victor over Eli because Eli’s logic was so irrational. I also favored Victor more because I pictured him as the Kaz Brekker (character from Leigh Bardugo’s Six of Crows) of the Vicious world, as they’re both such dark masterminds. If you loved the Six of Crows duology and you’re looking for something similar in the adult genre, read Vicious.
I loved Victor’s sidekicks, especially because they didn’t just feel like sidekicks. Mitch and Sydney each had their own backstory and role in the novel. In the second part of the book, I was screaming in almost every scene for Mitch not to die so he could carry on and drink his chocolate milk. I adore the image of this big, tattooed man sitting with a carton of chocolate milk. Sydney was my favorite character in the entire book. For a twelve year old with a creepy, supernatural ability, she was so strong and so unafraid (I would be crying in the corner, waiting for my mom to come and get me). I loved how she fit alongside Victor, and I enjoyed seeing Victor care about her, even though Mitch would gladly do anything for that girl. AND THIS BOOK HAS A DOG AND HIS NAME IS DOL AND HE’S SYDNEY’S SIDEKICK. I was also screaming for Dol to live in every scene in the second part.
Even though it was published in 2013, it makes me sad that Vicious doesn’t get the hype it deserves today. Schwab does a fantastic job of telling a story about villains. She makes it clear that these characters aren’t magically going to become good people and they’ll have a happily ever after. Right now, Vicious and This Savage Song (both Schwab books) are tied for my favorite book of the year. Vicious might have an advantage because of the dog though.