Book Review: Foul Lady Fortune by Chloe Gong

Wednesday 28 September 2022

Thank you to Netgalley and Hodder Books for the advanced reader copy of this book.

Foul Lady Fortune is a reimaging of As You Like It and follows on from the These Violent Delights Duology. Having not read These Violent Delights and Our Violent Ends prior to this book I will say there are a fair few spoilers for the prior duology.

The book takes place in 1931 Shanghai following the main character Rosalind Lang who four years ago was brought back from the brink of death. However the experiment that saved her prevents her from sleeping and ageing and allows her to heal from all wounds. 

With these new abilities and desperate for redemption from her past she becomes an assassin for her country with the codename Fortune. 

As a series of murders starts to cause unrest in Shanghai with suspicion surrounding the Japanese Imperial Army Rosalind has a new mission. To infiltrate foreign society and identify the culprits behind the terror plot. To do this she must pose as the wife of another Nationalist spy Orion Hong. Both have clashing personalities and secrets of their own that they want to keep buried. 

I must admit I did struggle with the first half of this book and it was not the writing I believe it was because this isn't the usual type of genre that I read. However by the second half of the book I was caught up in the twists and turns of the plot. 

Regarding the characters I found it difficult to care for some of them as they seem very much sidelined. Maybe if I had read the prior books I would already have a bit more background on these characters and a vested interest. My main interest in this book was the interaction and banter between Rosalind and Orion's characters and I found these parts of the story the most enjoyable.

The book ended with many twists that seemed to appear out of nowhere ncad while I enjoyed these twists I feel they could have been built up more rather than just being dropped in at the end. Maybe the second book in this series will build up more of a background on these reveals.

While I enjoyed this book overall it would not be one I rush to read again anytime soon. However I would be willing to give the sequel a chance to see if strengthens the twists in the first book with more background.

Thanks For Reading! 

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