Mystic City

Mystic City

3.74 (11,112 ratings by Goodreads)
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For fans of Matched, The Hunger Games, X-Men, and Blade Runner comes a tale of a magical city divided, a political rebellion ignited, and a love that was meant to last forever. Book One of the Mystic City Novels. 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.
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Product details

  • 12-17
  • Hardback | 416 pages
  • 150 x 216 x 33mm | 499g
  • New York, NY, United States
  • English
  • 038574160X
  • 9780385741606
  • 707,994

Review quote

USA Today, "Happily Ever After" (blog), October 9, 2012:
"The characters themselves, especially Aria, are what drive this book. I love deep and complex stuff, I love the cover, I love Theo's writing and the Mystic City world...This novel is for fans of mind games, rebels, heartache and intrigue."

Kirkus Reviews, May 15, 2012:
"A gripping Romeo-and-Juliet exploration of deception, espionage, revolution, the greater good and love conquering all--with the aid of magical green lights and a peculiar little locket." Publishers Weekly, September 3, 2012:
"Debut author Lawrence's writing is assured." School Library Journal, January 2013:
"This book marries a fast-paced plot with likable, developed characters, set in a future Manhattan that is all too believable...The plot takes other twists and turns as the protagonist learns about the Mystics and the scope of her own family's power. Hand this book to fans of Gabrielle Zevin's All These Things I've Done and other urban dystopias with strong female characters."
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About Theo Lawrence

THEO LAWRENCE is a graduate of Columbia University and the Juilliard School. A Presidential Scholar in the Arts for Voice, he has performed at Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center, and Off-Broadway.
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Rating details

11,112 ratings
3.74 out of 5 stars
5 29% (3,180)
4 33% (3,662)
3 25% (2,817)
2 10% (1,063)
1 4% (390)

Our customer reviews

A reversed version of X-Men is what I thought of when I was reading Mystic City. Some people have super-hero-like abilities, but many of those without powers are scared. This book shows the story from the normal's point of view mostly and it is a big political story mixed in with a love story. While I have divided feelings over the book, I will be continuing the series to see what happens next. My division comes over the predictability of the story. It was easy to figure out the reasons for Aria's memory gaps, who everyone really was, and where the story was going. I think there was only one thing that surprised me in the story. That said, I love the relationships that Aria has with everyone and all of the characters felt real and viable. I think there is a lot more story to be had in this series and will definitely be picking up the following books to see what happens to Aria, her family, and the mystics! Reviewed by Jessica for Book Sake. Book Received: For free from publisher in exchange for an honest more
by Jessica
Mystic City is the young adult debut novel by Theo Lawrence. It is set in an alternate Manhattan, or Mystic City, that has been built up by magic from the mystics, who are now drained and forced to live at the flooded ground level with the poor in their own semi-quarantined zone. The story centers on Aria Rose, the daughter of one of the ruling families of Manhattan, who is suffering from memory loss due to an overdose from Stic. As many of you may have noticed by now, I have a pretty eclectic taste in books. I don't even know when I pick one up whether or not it will be for me. I was actually a little worried about this one when I received the ARC. I liked Romeo and Juliet (I've read books comparing the two, and the comparison is made in the book itself) just fine, but Shakespeare retellings are usually gag-inducing for me. I usually don't do well with love triangles, politics, forbidden romances, and so on. However, I really loved this book, and read it in less than 12 hours. The Writing of Mystic City is a perfect example of what I have grown to love so much about young adult literature. I never felt like I was participating in a literary triathlon by trying to follow the story, but at the same time it never felt like it was dumbed down appeal to teenage readers. (I know not all YA books do that, but there are some. Oh yes, there are some.) Many of the same themes are present in Mystic City that were also part of Romeo and Juliet (warring families, forbidden love - basically the same things I mentioned before, except for the love triangle), but the novel was not just a fleshing out of the bones of the play. I would call it more of an homage than a retelling. Aria Rose is not the simpering, wilting Juliet that I expected from Mystic City either. She is a socialite/celebrity, but she is not afraid to get down and dirty to get the answers she craves due to her lost memory. She may not be tough or have special powers, but she is pretty ballsy, and there is little I love more than reading about an empowered girl in YA. (Yes, she is chasing after guys, but didn't we all at that age? Let her be seventeen.) So as far as the writing goes, no complaints from me. I loved it, and I think many teens will as well. 5/5 Stars The World-Weaving of Mystic City is very fascinating. I did not realize that this book was set in an alternate reality until probably halfway through the book. I suppose I should have gathered that from the "In this Manhattan..." from the book's summary, but I guess I didn't pay much attention to it. However, I am down for alternate reality, speculative fiction, epic fantasy - you name it. So it didn't matter much to me what was going on. In any case, Manhattan has been flooded due to global warming and the melting of ice caps and glaciers. I've only been to New York once, so I was able to buy how things were after something like that happened. The rich people lived at the tops of the skyscrapers (the Aeries) and the poor people were left on the ground. (It wasn't all flooded, but it sounds a bit Venetian from the descriptions.) Of course, the poor normal people and drained mystics were allowed to be servants in the Aeries. My one issue with the World-Weaving is that I wish there was more history. If a book is set in an alternate universe or whatever, I would love to know what the differences are. The only thing really even mentioned was one of the presidents, and the global warming. I'm not asking for the level from Orson Scott Card's Alvin Maker series, but I'm a history buff, and I want some beef. Being as this is the first book in the Mystic City series, I'll cut Mr. Lawrence some slack and keep the chopping block polished for the next book. 5/5 Stars The Pacing and Attention Span go hand-in-hand for me with this novel. The pacing was quick, and I stayed at the edge of my seat throughout Mystic City . There were betrayals, twists, and drama left and right, and I never really even had time to make guesses about things. (Yes, I had the main storyline figured out, but I don't think that was supposed to be some big huge secret.) As I said before, I read this book in approximately 12 hours, including my seven hours of sleep. Unless this is downright Not Your Thing, I can't seeing it losing your interest or attention. 5/5 Stars Now that we've finally made it to the Extra Magic , I can't really put my finger on it exactly. The characters were likeable (even if it's only because I liked to hate them), the story was good, and Theo Lawrence did a great job of writing Mystic City . I will definitely be recommending this to my library patrons, and I hope you get around to reading Mystic City , too. 5/5 Stars To satisfy FTC guidelines, I am disclosing that I received a review copy of this book from the publisher, which has in no way affected the outcome of my review. All opinions expressed are rambling, honest, and completely my more
by Kayla Beck
Aria Rose suffers from amnesia after waking up from an overdose of a drug known as Stic, it's made from the power of mystics only to discover she is engaged to a Thomas Foster, the son of the rival family who her parents hopes will unite the two families. Everyone says she's madly in love with Thomas, but she can't remember anything. How's she to marry someone she can't even remember being in love with? When Aria goes to visit Thomas for some answers, all she gets is more questions because before she can even arrive at the Foster's she meets a guy that saves her from a street gang. Mystics are drained of their power, to control them. He's a mystic rebel. She doesn't feel in danger while around him though, she feels just the opposite, Aria feels safe with him. She finds that she can't stop thinking about the mysterious Hunter. She soon finds the closest people around her may be the biggest betrayal of all. In this futuristic novel the world building was great. Everything was so detailed. I liked how she incorporated global warming and it's effects in the book. I adored Hunter! He was appealing, brave, gorgeous and intriguing, I can't say enough good things about him. This was one of those books I couldn't hardly put down, the only time I did was because I had to go to bed. The only negative thing I would say about it is that the ending seemed kind of rushed to me, maybe it was just because I tore through the pages. I'm looking forward to reading the next book, which comes out in 2013! Recommended for of fantasy, dystopian and romance. Thank you to Delacorte Books for Young Readers and NetGally for this digital copy in exchange for an honest more
by Sarah
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