City of Lost Dreams follows a musicologist named Sarah as she tries to save Pollina, a young piano prodigy, from a serious illness. With the help of her friends, an immortal dwarf and a Czech prince, Sarah looks for a missing doctor; her search gets complicated and dangerous as the past and present bleed together on the streets of Vienna and Prague.
This is the second book in a series and the first series where I’ve read the sequel first. There are plenty of references to an eventful history but I generally didn’t find myself confused or missing out. However I'm definitely going to find the first one, City of Dark Magic, soon.
City of Lost Dreams is a vibrant story where even minor characters are colorful and deep. The grandiose cities seem otherworldly and the blend of science, history, and magic are really charming. There are a number of images and sensations that recur throughout the story and are described so well that they stuck with me, from an automated golden galleon to the music of a glass armonica to a horse barn on fire. There are some scenes that are so heavily visual and abstract that I did have trouble imagining them, but for the most part, Flyte (who is actually two authers) writes so vividly I feel like I’m still in that mystical version of Europe.
You can get City of Lost Dreams on Amazon here.