Vicious by V.E. Schwab

VIcious - Victoria Schwab, V. E. Schwab

Victor and Eli were best friends during college. They were rivals in everything and shared a common ambition to put their research into practice. Systematically playing with death they were able to become ExtraOrdinary, gaining amazing abilities once only attributed to superheroes. Ten years have passed since then. Victor has just broken out of prison and is determined to get revenge against Eli for putting him there. Meanwhile Eli has been enacting his zealous mission of ridding the world of other EOs by personally hunting them down.     

Vicious is a compelling tale that explores the darkness of jealousy, revenge, death, and morality. There is no clear hero or villain and both main characters are wonderfully flawed. 

I loved the story's prose and found it thoroughly engaging. It was vividly descriptive with concise word usage often found in short stories which enabled it to invoke the sense of a graphic novel.

The story is set in the near future on a parallel world where super powers are conceivable. It's told through short alternating chapters that weave the past and present together from different perspectives. I appreciated that each chapter was clearly labeled and I liked the graphic design details included in the book's formatting. It made the overall story easier to follow and heightened the suspense in the second part by emphasizing the countdown.

I liked how the characters were portrayed. I enjoyed reading how they navigated through the dark themes within their different story lines. I really liked the concept behind how they became ExtraOrdinary and the different ways their powers manifested.

Vicious is an engaging story with dark undertones, vivid prose and dramatic characters.