These Violent Delights

These Violent Delights

Book - 2020 | First edition.
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In 1926 Shanghai, eighteen-year-old Juliette Cai, heir of the Scarlet Gang, and her first love-turned-rival Roma Montagov, leader of the White Flowers, must work together when mysterious deaths threaten their city.
Publisher: New York : Margaret K. McElderry Books, [2020]
Edition: First edition.
Copyright Date: ©2020
ISBN: 9781534457690
Characteristics: 499 pages ; 24 cm

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CaitlinG_OshLib Jan 26, 2021

These Violent Delights was well, delightful! A lush read with a thorough plot, These Violent Delights was a well rounded retelling with wonderful characters.


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Gina_Vee Apr 12, 2021

I really liked this book. It's like a retelling/remix of Romeo and Juliet, in a way, set in Shanghai, China with one twisted virus running rampant. I'm like most other readers of this book ('BUT THE ENDING!") so I'm definitely keeping a lookout for the second book in the series. The reading was slow-paced and dense for me, but the storyline is good, and, of course, Juliette is an impressive character.

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TamLinh
Apr 09, 2021

Juliette Cai is the heir to the Scarlet Gang.
Roma Montagov is the heir to the White Flowers.
An unknown threat comes to the city of Hong Kong, forcing the two to work together. Despite their hatred towards each other, there’s also a hot spark going between them. Their families fight to blame each other for the increase of deaths in their territories while the two rival heirs work together in secrecy, finding that Hong Kong did not seem what it was made out to be.
This book is like the modernized version of Romeo and Juliet, with a bit more twists and turns. Being based in Hong Kong, there’s also some Mandarin involved, so I also learned how to say some words. It’s such a great book because it causes you to think about what’s happening. But it also surprises you in some ways that you’ve never thought of.

One of my favourite things is a retelling done right. Where you can see those hints of the original story peeking through, but they don't overwhelm the new story being told, and the originality of that new story shines through stronger than if it were a new idea on its own. That's exactly what we get here. The rival gangs in Shanghai brings the story of Romeo and Juliet to a completely new world, and it was so much fun picking out the pieces of Shakespeare among the viciousness of this new setting.

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tracyhughes_1
Mar 15, 2021

Read for read woke challenge

I absolutely adored this book the romance is swoonworthy and I adored the atmospheric setting
5/5

s
SC_bookworm_0
Mar 13, 2021

Having read Romeo and Juliet, it was so fun for me to pick up on the tiny similarities in the names, and the subtle references to the play. For some reason, this book was just so refreshing. I loved that the fantasy element wasn't too far-fetched, and it was grounded in reality, used sort of as a metaphor for the ugly colonialism in Shanghai. The plot wasn't overly complicated, and even though the pacing was slow at the beginning, the world-building and beautiful writing style made up for it. I loved the characters; can't wait to see more of them in the sequel! I wouldn't call this a "retelling" of R&J, rather something even better. Again, the subtle references had me squealing, but Gong added so much more depth to the original story. This book is packed with a little bit of everything: mystery, fantasy, romance, political controversy, etc. And also can I just say that it was freaking amazing to read about angsty teenagers armed to the teeth with knives and guns and the ability to speak six different languages?? Like I need the sequel right now.

MomoT Mar 11, 2021

This novel ticks so many boxes: mystery, romance, elements of horror, a vibrant setting (1920s Shanghai), great use of language, good pacing, and lots of little nods to the source material (Romeo and Juliet). Doesn't so much retell the story of the play as it does riff off the characters and them being from rival families. Fair warning that it ends on a cliffhanger so another book is hopefully in the works!

s
Sam_Stewart
Feb 06, 2021

Who does not like a good retelling of Romeo and Juliet. This novel would be great to promoted to teachers introducing there English students to Shakespeare. It's fun, witty and more modern. Would definitely promote to a young adult book club or reluctant readers.

These Violent Delights is an incredible book and is a retelling of “Romeo and Juliet”. The story takes place in Shanghai and is about two heirs of rival gangs who were once star-crossed lovers, but now hate each other and must join forces in order to defeat a strange “madness” that is killing people off left and right. From the first page, I was drawn into this book and the rest of the story really proved to live up to the expectation of its great start. I thought that the descriptions were exquisite and the world building absolutely amazed me. It was different from my typical read in the sense that it didn’t heavily involve much fantasy (albeit there is a monster), but I really enjoyed that. It involves gangs, alliances, deaths, gruesomeness, historical elements, romance, and much more! That brings me to mention how I also liked how the author embedded historical elements of 1926 Shanghai because it enhanced the world building even more. The relationships between the side characters were intriguing, along with the romance between Roma and Juliette. Overall, I really enjoyed this book and would definitely recommend it!

a
amberhen
Feb 05, 2021

These Violent Delights by Chloe Gong portrays a fun twist on the classic Romeo and Juliet. Set in the 1920s Shanghai, China, the book takes a unique and refreshing approach to lovers born on different sides. Our two main characters Juliet and Roma are members of two opposing gangs. Their tumultuous history has been buried by years of separation, but when Juliet returns to her home in Shanghai, their paths cross yet again. A new threat, however, is approaching. It is something much larger than either of the gangs’ rivalries, and it is up to our protagonists to save their city. Overall, I thought this was a decent book. I enjoyed the references to being an Asian-American, being one myself, and seeing the author share her personal experiences through Juliet. If you can appreciate a historical, romance and action packed type of story, you should check this book out.

CaitlinG_OshLib Jan 26, 2021

These Violent Delights was well, delightful! A lush read with a thorough plot, These Violent Delights was a well rounded retelling with wonderful characters.

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When they were launching marbles along the uneven ground, they were just Roma and Juliette, not Roma Montagov and Juliette Cai, the heirs of rival gangs. They were laughing kids who had found a confidant, a friend who understood the need to be someone else if only for a while each day.
They fell in love.
At least - Juliette thought they had.

When they were launching marbles along the uneven ground, they were just Roma and Juliette, not Roma Montagov and Juliette Cai, the heirs of rival gangs. They were laughing kids who had found a confidant, a friend who understood the need to be someone else if only for a while each day.
They fell in love.
At least - Juliette thought they had.

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