Mystic City by Theo Lawrence

mystic cityMystic City by Theo Lawrence
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Length: 416 pages
Genera: Science Fiction
Subjects: Dystopia, romance, love, magic
How I obtained the book: Library; hardcover


Aria Rose, youngest scion of one of Mystic City’s two ruling rival families, finds herself betrothed to Thomas Foster, the son of her parents’ sworn enemies. The union of the two will end the generations-long political feud—and unite all those living in the Aeries, the privileged upper reaches of the city, against the banished mystics who dwell below in the Depths. But Aria doesn’t remember falling in love with Thomas; in fact, she wakes one day with huge gaps in her memory. And she can’t conceive why her parents would have agreed to unite with the Fosters in the first place. Only when Aria meets Hunter, a gorgeous rebel mystic from the Depths, does she start to have glimmers of recollection—and to understand that he holds the key to unlocking her past. The choices she makes can save or doom the city—including herself.


Mystic City is a book that I have been waiting for since it appeared on Netgalley/Edelweiss. There were two reasons, as there usually are in my stories. One is because I was under the impression that the main character was black and the cover model was too (they aren’t sadly). The second reason is that the book simply sounds good!

Sadly however, it failed to live up to my expectations – by a lot.

Its downfalls are centered around one main cause. Characters. The characters weren’t terrible, horrible characters that make you want to kill everyone around you and then yourself destroy a wall. In fact, I didn’t really hate any of them.


I know! When do I not hate a character in a book?!?! However surprising it is, it’s the truth. I didn’t hate them. I just didn’t give a damn about them. Not even our very own heroine Aria Mary Sue Rose. This gif basically sums up my whole reading experience:

That’s right. None. Nada. Zero. Zéro. Cero. It’s the sad truth. I really wanted to love them but as time went on it turned out that the characters were simply blandly unlikable.

Aria Rose. What can I say about her? I no like her. Aria really only cares about herself and her “boy”. She doesn’t care about those people who she says she loves. She’s also really gullible and seems to believe/listen to everyone.

I know it sounds like I hate her but I don’t. I don’t like her but that’s as far as my feelings go. I think I should hate her but I don’t. She’s so bland most of the time it’s insane. I felt detached from the beginning. Detached = bland. GRRRR GET OVER HERE SO I CAN KILL YOU = hate.

Aria has two lovers but I don’t consider this a love triangle. It’s really obvious who she is going to end up with fairly soon in the book/summary. It’s pretty simple why. The first guy is her lover that she doesn’t remember. The other is guy she meets later on. And before you ask, no, I do not remember their names.

The love interest(s; I guess) was so bland and cliched. I really was surprised on how little personality he had that wasn’t reused around 200 times. By little, I mean none. He was a walking jumble of every Gary Stu imaginable. I guess that’s a pretty hard thing to do. I mean, imagine having to make sure not to let anybit of original material into your character? Here’s a RDJ gif for your efforts:

Plot and Writing
The plot wasn’t that bad really. In fact, it was interesting. Basically, the city where Aria lives is powered by mystic energy. How do they get the energy? Well, some people have energy in them that basically grants them power to do, you know, magic things.

This magic is drainable and that’s how the energy gets into the city and keeps it going. As you can imagine, being drained isn’t a pleasant experience and leaves the mystic sick. This never goes well and obviously there is a rebellion.

It’s a silent one as it’s not really put together. When Aria arrives, everyone decides “Hey, let’s go kill the peeps who are doing this to us” and starts an active rebellion.

That’s basically the plot of the entire book. Aria = rebellion. It’s interesting as I said, but I’ve read this a million and two times before. It’s getting old. There weren’t any big differences in the plot except for the memory loss. I’ve only read one or two of those ones before. It wasn’t anything amazing but I do think that under different hands, it could have been way better.

The writing wasn’t extremely descriptive but it wasn’t that bad either. I do congratulate the author with having a fairly decent world building. It could be improved (like everything in the book) but it wasn’t that bad at all.

What I liked and what I didn’t
* The Wordbuilding
* Mystic Thing
* Fun plot

* Characters

In conclusion
I didn’t like this book. It wasn’t horrible but obviously, it wasn’t that good. Do I recommend it? No, not really unless this is the last thing you have. It isn’t a bad read if you don’t over think it and forget that it’s a cliched mess.


2 thoughts on “Mystic City by Theo Lawrence

  1. Livvy @Nerdy Book Reviews says:

    I’m sorry to hear that, Lisbeth! I had heard really good things about this, but now you’ve definitely left me wary with your little rant.

    On another note, I like your Mat Smith gif.haha.

    Great review! :)

    • Lisbeth Avery says:

      Thanks Livyy :) I heard good things too but I was obviously disappointed.

      I love my Matt gif and I’m glad I can finally use them. I never knew I could use them if I copied the review from GR.

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