Monday, October 23, 2023

Book Review: "Immortal Longings" by Chloe Gong

Title: Immortal Longings
Author: Chloe Gong
Series: "Flesh and False Gods" #1
Genre: Adult Fantasy
Page Length: 384 pages
Publication Date: July 18, 2023
Rating: 4 // 5 stars

So I'm a big fan of Chloe's books. I love her Secret Shanghai universe and I have been eagerly anticipating this adult debut since it was announced. And I really enjoyed it. I'm writing this review a few months on from having read it so I've had some time to sit with my thoughts since I initially finished. 

Besides the characters, what most intrigued me about this book was the setting. Immortal Longings is set in San-Er, a city much like the demolished Kowloon Walled City that once stood in China. It's a city built on top of itself with people packed in like sardines. It's a setting unlike any I've ever read about and was so incredibly vivid. I definitely think the setting is part of what drew me to this story. 

I really liked our two main characters. Calla is a badass and I loved getting to know her. Anton is a compelling adversary turned ally and I really enjoyed him as well. I think mainly I loved the dynamic between these two with the competition and being forced to work together. I will say I'm rooting for the romance but I do think it needs a lot more development before it would become one of my favorites. 

The plot is intriguing. I am a sucker for a competition and I think it's one of those things where tension and conflict is automatically built in to the story. The magic system was interesting. People can jump between bodies which leads to a lot of openings for deception and treachery...potentially a future point of conflict? 

There's not really much I can say about this book. I think it was a pretty good first start to a series and I read through it quickly. It was engaging and I couldn't stop reading. However, I do think it's not as strong as Chloe's other books yet. I'm eagerly anticipating further books in this world, though, especially after the cliffhanger. Overall, it was an enjoyable addicting read but not as particularly mind-blowing as I was hoping for. 

Thanks for reading!

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