Synopsis:The year is 1926, and Shanghai hums to the tune of debauchery.
A blood feud between two gangs runs the streets red, leaving the city helpless in the grip of chaos. At the heart of it all is eighteen-year-old Juliette Cai, a former flapper who has returned to assume her role as the proud heir of the Scarlet Gang—a network of criminals far above the law. Their only rivals in power are the White Flowers, who have fought the Scarlets for generations. And behind every move is their heir, Roma Montagov, Juliette’s first love…and first betrayal.
But when gangsters on both sides show signs of instability culminating in clawing their own throats out, the people start to whisper. Of a contagion, a madness. Of a monster in the shadows. As the deaths stack up, Juliette and Roma must set their guns—and grudges—aside and work together, for if they can’t stop this mayhem, then there will be no city left for either to rule.
Review: I had to give this book a good 24 hours to collect my thoughts, and honestly, I still do not have words to describe my love for this book. Upon reading the synopsis I knew that this was a book I would enjoy, but DAMN. First of all, this is the enemies-to-lovers story that I have been looking for my entire life. It was the best execution of the trope that I have ever seen. I think the main reason that this works is that Chloe created such incredible characters. They all had their own personalities and motivations for why they acted the way they acted in a way that felt genuine to them.
The atmosphere created in the world was incredible and so unique. I do not think that I have ever read a book set in 1920’s Shanghai and now that is all I want. As someone who is a huge fan of political intrigue, this was basically a book written for me. The political maneuverings were so rich and the plot was taking a ton of twists and turns. It honestly completely swept me away from the real world and kept me turning the pages.
The only thing that I personally would’ve changed about this book is to age the characters up just a few years. I kept forgetting how young they were supposed to be, just because of the life that they live and the situations they find themselves in.
I recommend this to EVERYONE who is a fan of enemies-to-lovers. Seriously, go pick it up right now. This will definitely be on my favorites of the year list, and could certainly be my favorite young adult novel of all time!