Sunday, September 16, 2012

Review: Shadows by Ilsa J. Bick

I read Ashes back in May. Ever since then I have been dying to read its sequel; Shadows. And when I got accepted to read it via NetGalley a month ago I was so excited. So I did the thing I always do. I peeked. And I didn't approve much of what I saw. Knew there was much I wouldn't like. So I have been putting off reading it for a month. Then today I suddenly needed to read it. I really did. And I'm glad I did.. Because Shadows was amazing. But it was also so goddamn awful. So heartbreaking and full of death and torture and not a single happy thing. And that killed me. Not sure another book has killed me like this one did. There is so much hurt in this book. And while I wouldn't mind that much, there wasn't any happy things to keep up with the bad. And omg. It is so awful, and I cannot stop thinking about it and gah. It is too much. But despite all that. I did love this book. And I do love the writing. And the story.

I am conflicted about this book. Just be aware that there will be spoilers for book one, Ashes in my review. Because while I did enjoy this book, I also felt like it was a filler. And I haven't felt that about books before; but I have seen other people mention it. And that is what this book was. Because nothing much happened. It was mostly just 500 pages of death and a bit torture. It was hell. But in a strange way I kind of liked it. Because this book was never boring. Something always happened. Even though I felt like it wasn't moving forward much. And I did not approve the ending at all. But in a weird way I also loved it, because I know so many things are going to happen in book three. *Shudders.*

Shadows starts right where Ashes ends. With Alex out in the woods alone with the Changed. And I won't spoil much of it, but omg. The changed were awful. But so fascinating and kind of awesome. They reminded me so much of zombies, I kept thinking they were. Difference is though, the Changed are alive. They even have sex. Ugh. They can do everything regular humans can do. Except for talk. And I sort of enjoyed reading about the changed. Until the killing started. You see, they sort of take Alex captive. To be eaten at a later point. They have a lot of people captured like that.

And oh. It was so horrible. Because we get to see them kill and kind of torture so many people. And it was killing me. But I also didn't totally hate it. I wish it hadn't happened, but I also understood it so well. Because it did fit with the story. Except for the part where in book one there were other things than just death. Ashes had romance. And hope, sometimes. Except for the ending. Shadows have no romance. And it ends with no hope. Except for that hope I have, because I read between the lines (A)

I don't mean to spoil things about this book. And I'm hoping I don't. But, well, you need to know what you are up against before reading this book. Because I'm pretty sure there are people who can't read about so much death and torture and heartbreak. I managed it, but it is going to give me nightmares. I can already see them :p Shadows is written from many people's point of view. And I am still not sure if I loved that or not. Loved Alex's point of view, and Chris's. And maybe Lena's. Maybe.

But there is this one character I do not like. And I will never like him. And goddamn it. Please, don't let this trilogy end with him getting it all. With him being with Alex. I do not want it. You see, a big character of this book is Tom. Tom who was supposed to be dead in book one. But he isn't. And he has a big part in this book. And I'm sure someone loves him, but I don't. And I never will. Sorry (A) He just isn't my type. I did maybe enjoy his point of views. But I would rather have had more of Chris.

There is so many new characters in this book. But first there is Alex, the main character. I still love her. For the most part. She is so strong. And brave. And she didn't kill herself; like someone else did. And I respect her for it. Even though I probably would have killed myself in her position. Heh. Lots of this book is from her point of view, but I also wished there had been more. Because I loved reading her chapters. They were so good. And we learned so much about the Changed from her.

Then there is Chris. Chris, who could have been dead at the end of Ashes. But he isn't. But god. So much awful happens to Chris. And it kills me. All he ever wanted was to keep Alex safe. And he most likely loves her. And I love him. And oh. I loved reading his point of view, but I also hated it. Because it made me miss him so much, and it made me hurt so much for everything that happened to him. Especially by the end. Won't spoil it, but I'm hoping. And for the two characters who were showing up ;)

There is also new characters in this book. All the Changed. They each have a big part in this book. No point of view from them, but we do learn so much about them. I hated them. I loved them. It is complicated. So much pain, though. There was this one Changed, named Wolf. He was most likely Chris's twin brother. He seemed so awful, though. But I'm curious about him. I need to know what happened to him near the end. I need to know very much. Sigh, so much I need to know.

There were also so many awful cruel horrible new characters. Like Finn. My god, how I HATED Finn. He was a real torturer. I hated him so much. What he did to Peter.. shudders. I cannot think of it. I must not. It was so awful. And worst thing, he will be in book three. Ahhh. Will probably give me more nightmares. There was also Weller. This old dude. My god I hated him. The lies he told Tom.. they will probably mean so much in book three. And I can already feel my heartbreak over it. *sobs*

I don't know how to deal with this book. There was so much death. So much violence. But I also could not stop reading it. I needed to know what would happen next. Even though I still think too little happened in those 500 pages :p I wanted more. And now I must wait at least a year for book three o.O I cannot wait that long. I can't. I need to know. I need to know who is dead. Who isn't. Who will die. How it all ends. The suspense will kill me, just you see. Hih. A bit dramatic, yes, but still true.

Anyway. The ending of Shadows is kind of a bit cliffhanger. A huge one. And I did not approve. But it also makes me more excited for the sequel. There is so many things to learn in this book. So many things that need to be resolved in the third book. So many things I need answers to. Sigh. Mostly I just want romance in book 3. I need Chris and Alex to be together. Because they fit together. They really do. And, oh, if you read this book that you will know why that is upsetting me so much. Sigh.

Shadows is an amazing book. Even if there is a lot of death. The writing is good. The story is still unique and pretty amazing. It is a book worth reading. So you really should read it if you have read Ashes :) But oh. I wish so many of the people who died hadn't died :\ And I wanted so many people to die, and then they didn't die. Ugh. Isn't that just typical. lol. Still. I am so excited for book three in this trilogy. I need to know what happens next. And I need to know right now. Pretty please? <3

Thank you to NetGalley and Egmont USA for the chance to read this book early. <3


  1. I loved this review because it clearly shows your feelings for the book. I really liked Ashes and hearing Shadow is going to be full of pain and death and torture...well, I know I'm gonna read it anyway, but I know I'll need chocolate. Lots of it.

    Chris...I really, really love him and it's going to be a torture to read what he has to endure, I just know. And I cannot even start to think about the deaths...

    1. <3 thank you so much :) Yeah, you will probably need that ;) Sigh. This book was so good. Even with all the death.

  2. Lol! You sound like I did when I reviewed this one. It was good, but "dead people, gore...death, death, death, gar!" and yet I couldn't help reading on. I like Chris more too...though for me...Alex can have Tom, hahaha. Great review.

    1. lol :D Yeah, it was pretty awesome :) Sigh. Chris is adorable. <3 No no no. I do not want Alex and Tom together at all. Don't think they fit together ;p Hih :) Thank you. <3

  3. I just met Finn! God, he's awful. Characters like that always make my stomach turn. I'm a little sad to hear that this felt a like a filler, but I'm glad you were never bored reading it. It's taking me quite a while to get through it with work in the way! I hope to be done in the next few days at least. :) Brilliant review hun!

    1. Oh yes, he really is. Ugh. It did that. But it is also pretty awesome ;) Hope you'll finish it soon :D
      Thank you. <3


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