I’m lucky. I live in the greatest city in the world. I live in my favorite city in the world. It’s where I’ve wanted to be ever since I was young. Because I knew it was magical.
I am a very lucky girl to live in New York.
And so is Echo.
Beneath the streets of New York City live the Avicen, an ancient race of people with feathers for hair and magic running through their veins. Age-old enchantments keep them hidden from humans. All but one. Echo is a runaway pickpocket who survives by selling stolen treasures on the black market, and the Avicen are the only family she’s ever known.
Echo is clever and daring, and at times she can be brash, but above all else she’s fiercely loyal. So when a centuries-old war crests on the borders of her home, she decides it’s time to act.
Legend has it that there is a way to end the conflict once and for all: find the Firebird, a mythical entity believed to possess power the likes of which the world has never seen. It will be no easy task, though if life as a thief has taught Echo anything, it’s how to hunt down what she wants . . . and how to take it.
But some jobs aren’t as straightforward as they seem. And this one might just set the world on fire.
Let’s get into this.
What Intrigued Me: To start, Echo lives in the New York Public Library. The LIBRARY! It’s stated right at the beginning of the novel and, honestly, that’s when I was sold. Seriously, who wouldn’t want to live in the NYPL? It’s New York Book Heaven!
Hell, if takeout delivered there, I would move into the NYPL.
…okay, I would potentially give up takeout all together to live in the NYPL.
And I love my takeout.
What Hooked Me: I love mythical creatures. I am a connoisseur of mythical creatures. And I love finding new ones.
So the Avicen are multicolored candy to me.
Full disclosure: I hate birds. And they hate me. It is a blood feud going back decades. And there is no end in sight. But I like these birds. They are colorful and silly and love sugar.
Who doesn’t love sugar? Actual birds.
Chalk it in the win column for mythical birds.
What Made Me Fall In Love: More than the library, more than the sugar?
Melissa Grey gets how magical New York is. She gets it.
Mythical creatures living in the subway tunnels?
Magical thieves living in the library?
Black markets hidden behind the phone booth in Crif Dogs (PDT shout out!)?
There is a reason why so many stories are set in New York, why so many people dream of coming here, why people like me refuse to ever leave.
NYC is magic, and it’s everywhere. You just have to see it.