Cast in Shadow ~ Michelle Sagara West

  • Title: Cast in Shadow
  • Author: Michelle Sagara West
  • Series:  Chronicles of Elantra #1
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Format: eBook
  • Source: Own Copy
  • Reviewed by: Sonja
  • Rating: 5 out of 5

Description:  Seven years ago Kaylin fled the crime-riddled streets of Nightshade, knowing that something was after her. Children were being murdered — and all had the same odd markings that mysteriously appeared on her own skin…

Since then, she’s learned to read, she’s learned to fight and she’s become one of the vaunted Hawks who patrol and police the City of Elantra. Alongside the winged Aerians and immortal Barrani, she’s made a place for herself, far from the mean streets of her birth.

But children are once again dying, and a dark and familiar pattern is emerging, Kaylin is ordered back into Nightshade with a partner she knows she can’t trust, a Dragon lord for a companion and a device to contain her powers — powers that no other human has. Her task is simple — find the killer, stop the murders… and survive the attentions of those who claim to be her allies!

Review:  I have looked at this book I do not know how many times before I actually caved in and purchased it. My main resistance was the fact that it is published by Luna – a Harlequin publishing company. Didn’t want to read a romance. I decided to read it based on the reviews. I am glad I did – it does, in no way that I could see, fill the “Harelequin” mold. 

As usual, I had a bit of trouble getting into this book. I honestly cannot remember at what point it became a book I was unable to put down. Kaylin is a very passionate and feisty heroine. The mystery as to who she is and what makes her so kept me glued to the story. Unlike other stories where I just wanted to know the answer to the mystery, I really enjoyed the ride as it unfolded. After finishing the book, I still have unanswered questions – not the kind that make me angry in the “Why didn’t the author address this?” way but the kind that go “I can’t wait to read the next book to see what direction these questions take me” way.

I could not decide if I was angry or fascinated by the way the answer to Kaylin’s relationship with Severn was revealed. I will say that it came as a complete surprise and I did not see it coming. Even a tiny bit. 

I adored the different races in this book – and the characterizations that came with each. I will admit to picturing the Leotines a bit like the cowardly lion in The Wizard of Oz. And, who among us hasn’t dreamed of having wings and the ability to fly?

The humor in this book is very subtle. In some (very few) instances I actually laughed out loud. Kaylin reacts to stress the way that I do: by making really bad jokes that cause those around her to question her sanity. Not a lot of romance here – but I can see it developing in future installments.

Indeed, I am annoyed that I have finished this. Now, I have to “get into” another novel.

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