Review – Diamond City by Francesca Flores

**Disclaimer: I was given a free ARC in exchange for an honest review from the publisher.**

Title Diamond City

Author Francesca Flores

Description from Amazon

Good things don’t happen to girls who come from nothing…unless they risk everything.

Fierce and ambitious, Aina Solís as sharp as her blade and as mysterious as the blood magic she protects. After the murder of her parents, Aina takes a job as an assassin to survive and finds a new family in those like her: the unwanted and forgotten.

Her boss is brutal and cold, with a questionable sense of morality, but he provides a place for people with nowhere else to go. And makes sure they stay there.

DIAMOND CITY: built by magic, ruled by tyrants, and in desperate need of saving. It is a world full of dark forces and hidden agendas, old rivalries and lethal new enemies.

To claim a future for herself in a world that doesn’t want her to survive, Aina will have to win a game of murder and conspiracy―and risk losing everything.

Release Date January 28, 2020

Initial Thoughts

I received a copy of this ARC at YALLFEST 2019. Yes, we’re almost a year later right now and I’m just writing this review. You might be asking yourself why. Here’s why – it took me 9 months to finish this book. Needless to say, I was excited when I started it and my excitement fizzled fast.

Some Things I Liked

  • World building. I really liked the world Francesca Flores created (minus the wolf sized spiders). In general, I thought the industrial and magic vs. technology world was an interesting concept that I was eager to read more about.
  • Morally grey characters. I always appreciate moral greyness in characters and this book definitely had a lot of that. I loved seeing Aina’s inner struggle with right vs. wrong and she was very Celaena Sardothian in that sense.

Some Things I Wasn’t Crazy About

  • The romance, or lack there of. There was essentially no romance in this book and I was really bummed about that. The story barely kept my interest and romance is one of the best ways to hook me as a reader. I wanted something, anything to keep it going.
  • Pseudo-heist storyline. Again, the storyline seemed like it was going one way and just totally fizzled. I was hoping for a Six of Crows / Ocean’s Eleven kind of heist and that’s not what I got at all.

Series Value

Ok, ok, ok. I already have an ARC of the sequel to this book. But, to be fair, I’d have kept reading anyway. I didn’t love this debut but the characters and world building were sufficiently interesting that I’d continue to read about them.

Let me be clear though, this is not a “drop everything and read” kind of series for me. I’ll get to it when I get to it, but, I’m not going to skip it.

Final Thoughts

This book was ok. It was a debut and it really showed. I think it has good bones and I think the writer shows a lot of promise. However, this story, wasn’t my favorite.


Recommendations for Further Reading

  • Shadow City by Francesca Flores – as mentioned above, I haven’t read this yet, but I plan to. I think this plot has enough potential for me to want to keep reading.
  • Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo – if you’re looking for a story with a heist vibe, try this duology.

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