The Black Veins by Ashia Monet

This was such a fun book. It’s set in our world, but there are magicians. Blythe and six other teens are guardians associated with the seven types of magic. As they set off to gather each guardian, the two magical governments are on the brink of war. The guardians need to learn to work together and find their own strengths in the process.

It’s a great adventure with 7 very different teens learning to stand up for themselves and each other. It’s about friendship (yes, this is one of those rare books that focuses on friendship and doesn’t assume that everyone needs to couple off). It focuses on families – blood relations and found families. And, it’s about courage and all the different ways people can be brave. Each of these teens come from different backgrounds – from a sheltered, timid kid to a badass superhero. They all need to find their own strengths and their own courage.

This book has all kinds of rep – different racialized communities, different sexual preferences, different gender identities (including non-binary and trans), and different economic brackets. I would have loved for some body diversity (just one fat or chubby kid would have been nice).

Honestly, my only real disappointment is that the non-binary character, who I loved, was only in the first coupe chapters (though, I expect they’ll to make a reappearance in the future as they were close to Blythe).

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