Title: Vicious Spirits (Gumiho #2)
Author: Kat Cho
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers
Publication date: August 18th, 2020
As Vicious Spirits begins, Miyoung and Jihoon are picking up the pieces of their broken lives following the deaths of Miyoung’s mother, Yena, and Jihoon’s grandmother. With the support of their friend Somin, and their frenemy, Junu, they might just have a shot at normalcy. But Miyoung is getting sicker and sicker by the day and her friends don’t know how to save her. With few options remaining, Junu has an idea but it might require the ultimate sacrifice and, let’s be honest, Junu isn’t known for his “generosity.” Meanwhile, the events at the end of Wicked Fox have upended the forces that govern life and death and there are supernatural entities lurking in the background that will stop at nothing to right their world.
“As with any tragedy, it came about because he loved.”Kat Cho, Vicious Spirits
As a companion novel to Wicked Fox, Vicious Spirits exceeded my expectations. Not a true sequel as it focuses on Somin and Junu’s story instead of an extension of Miyoung and Jihoon’s – but it picks up shortly after Wick Fox ends. Miyoung is dealing with the consequences of not having her fox bead, and the friends are looking for ways to save her as the world starts to get more confusing. Junu may be the only creature who can help Miyoung, and the last person that Miyoung trusts. And Junu will need to give up a lot to help, including the new feelings he has for Somin.
Truly, I enjoyed this follow up more than Wicked Fox. I found Wicked Fox to be good, but not very exciting or gripping. I felt very differently about Vicious Spirits, which could be due to the characters or an improved story line and writing by the author. The pacing and flow of events seemed a lot more seamless and the events that transpired felt necessary. There were plenty of emotional moments, and I loved that it wasn’t a true sequel, but you still got to see a lot of Miyoung and Jihoon – just through the lens of other characters.
I would have loved more from the ending, however it was written very emotionally and I was drawn in – but I felt like something was lacking. Really that would be my only critique. I love this fantasy mixed with magical realism and fantastical creatures and magic blend with real life and the real world. Also, this cover is LIFE.
Happy reading, folks!