Diverse Books, YA Books

Spellhacker by M.K. England – ARC Review

Thank you to Harper 360 for sending me an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

Having loved The Disasters by M.K. England earlier this year, I knew I had to read Spellhacker and I was so excited when I was sent an ARC!

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Rating: 4/5

Synopsis from Goodreads:

In Kyrkarta, magic—known as maz—was once a freely available natural resource. Then an earthquake released a magical plague, killing thousands and opening the door for a greedy corporation to make maz a commodity that’s tightly controlled—and, of course, outrageously expensive.
Which is why Diz and her three best friends run a highly lucrative, highly illegal maz siphoning gig on the side. Their next job is supposed to be their last heist ever.
But when their plan turns up a powerful new strain of maz that (literally) blows up in their faces, they’re driven to unravel a conspiracy at the very center of the spellplague—and possibly save the world.

I really enjoyed this book and the wonderfully diverse characters! This is an action packed book which will take you on a wild ride! The story is set in a futuristic world with magic, which is called Maz, and advanced tech. There’s a great squad of characters, who have all been affected in some way by the magical plague and now use their skills and magical abilities to steal magic for whoever will hire them. The story starts just as they decide to take on one last heist before they go their separate ways.

One of the themes that is discussed throughout the story is about family and what is family. Diz considers her friends her family but she struggles to express how she feels. She’s afraid of losing them but she also doesn’t know how to express that to them. It was really interesting to see how she battled through her fears and insecurities and I’m sure it will be very relatable for most teens. I really loved the importance of found families and how friends can also become family. That there is more to being family than just blood.

There is really great LGBT rep and diverse relationships which I think were shown in a great nuanced way. I loved seeing how they were all accepted by each other for who they were. It’s really nice to see that in books.

This is going to be the greatest last score of all time.

The story had me on the edge of my seat, wanting to know what will happen next. I really love seeing that young people can make a change for the better in the world as it parallels our society where the youth are striving to make the world a better place to live for everyone. The natural disasters that occur in the books, why they occur and who are the most affected also parallels our world really well.

The heist they decide to pull causes them to discover secrets and puts them in danger. While on the run they have to deal with emotions and their friendships and relations. It was interesting to see how they had to work out what was going on and why their lives were in danger but also how they feel towards each other and what their future holds.

I loved seeing magic combined with tech, the world is so unique and interesting because of the magic system and how people use the magic. Some people can manipulate the maz but as it is a natural resource it isn’t available to everyone equally. Remi discusses how not having access to maz affects them and makes them feel like a part of it is missing.

The characters all so great and work so well together yet also argue with each other like teenagers would and I really loved seeing the banter between them.

If you like heist stories that are action packed and full of a great diverse squad of characters then I highly recommend reading this book!

It is out on January 21st

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