Book number 4 in 2022 was These Violent Delights by Chloe Gong. First, I have to confess that I mixed this book up with Den of Vipers, from a list of ‘spicy tik Tok books’, as their covers are very similar. So I was already a little miffed when I started this and I don’t know if it colours my opinion.
This book is set in 1920’s Shanghai, in the aftermath of the opium wars and during the early rise of the communist party in China. The story follows the heirs of the two opposing gangs, as they investigate a strange sickness sweeping through the city that makes people go insane and rip out their own throats. The narrative switches between Roma and Juliette’s points of view, as they put aside the blood feud between their families as well as their own personal history to discover the mysterious, potentially supernatural source of the plague.
What did I think?
hmmm on paper, it should be right up my street, right? Yet, somehow, I found this book kind of… boring. There’s no other way to put it. I don’t know how a plot like this can feel slow paced and yet it was. It put me in a bit of reading slump. This may have something to do with what was going with me in the real world but I just didn’t enjoy this book that much!