The symbolism in ‘A darker shade of magic’ by V.E.Schwab

-This book is magical, and I almost read it in one breathe. In case you don’t know what I’m talking about, ‘A darker shade of magic’ is the first book of a series called ‘Shades of magic’ by V.E. Schwab. It’s about four magical parallel words, where only Antari are allowed to go from one world to another using blood magic. Without further ado, and  assuming that you’ve read the book, let’s get started.


Corruption:  Magic in this book seems to be a symbolism for power.  The ones who had enough of it were happy; the ones who had very little of it were constantly fighting one another, and were frustrated; the ones who had none or almost none were very poor. And there is another world, completely closed to the other three. They had way too much, and that almost destroyed the world. Too much power can get to your head and can control you, like this book suggests, but on the other hand everyone needs to have some power, and to be able to control the power they have. Even Kell, who had a good gasp of his magical power, had a hard time trying to control the magic of the black stone, and he almost lost his battle, if it wasn’t for Lila. We have Grey London as an example, there was much poverty and depression, all coming from not having their needs met and not having much control over their lives.  The twins, on the other hand,  had Holland, a powerful Antari, under their control, and they had a little powers, but they still greedily craved for more. Their desire for power and control (not to mention their sadism) had transformed them into terrible people, and beyond-cruel rulers.

Fake parents: Despite the nice and kind way his foster family treated him, Kell always felt he didn’t belong there. The moment there were suspicions that Kell had killed his brother, the masks of his foster parents dropped. They started treated Kell like he wasn’t their son, and like Rhy was their only son, which was something that Kell immediately noticed.  No matter how much they pretended, in the end Rhy was their only son. This book suggests that nothing can replace your true parents, no matter how generous they are with you. But, I may have read too much into it, after all. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Symbolism of flowers: First, we’ll start with what kind of flowers you can find in the Isle’s bank in the Red London? Shooting stars flowers were believed to be protected by 12 major Greek gods. This means that the Red London is blessed and protected. Lilies, on the other hand, have different meaning depending on the type. They mean chastity and virtue. People in the Red London seemed to be nice people. They also mean sympathy, wealth and prosperity. Red London seems to have enough wealth and prosperity. But, it can also symbolize death. As we know many deaths occurred in this book, especially in the Red London. Azalea is the kind of flower that you’d give to someone you love. The royal family of the Red London was indeed loved by the citizens. But, mostly importantly Azaleas are a symbol of womanhood. When someone gives this flower to someone else, it means that they ask the person to stay beautiful. Maybe, this means that after all Red London will stay as beautiful as it is despite everything. Or, at least in this book. But, it also means that the citizens wants the city to stay as beautiful as it is.

-In the end, it seems that flowers are the symbol of magic itself, and magic means power to live and to love life. Kell smelled like flowers after going from one world to another.

Rivers: Like rivers in the ‘Shades of magic’ are source of magic, in real life they were source of life. Civilization tended to build its life around rivers, because they’d have more access to drinkable water. But, that’s not only it. River provided also food, and they could use that water to  take care of the plants. Too much of magic, in this case water, is bad. Flooding caused by too much water can destroy the houses around. Just like too much magic can destroy lives.

-I hope you like what I wrote. I don’t know much about flowers’ symbolism, but I tried to do some research. If you read all of this without reading the book, then you can find the book in the link down below. It’s an amazing book, and if you’re like fantasy books like me, then I totally suggest it.

You can find it in Amazon Kindle: A darker shade of magic by V.E.Schwab


White London photo – Annie Spratt

Red London photo – Brooke Lark

Black London photo – Jake Young

Gray London photo – Anton Darius

-They were all edited by Parta Cana.




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