Shadows by Ilsa J Bick, 4 stars

shadows11320138So, I love Ilsa J Bick’s books and from my interactions with her on Twitter she seems like an awesome person. I just want to put all that out there before I say this. I hate her. She is an evil person who writes evil books about people who do evil things and have evil cliffhanger endings. EVIL.

Okay, got that off my chest.

So Shadows picks up right where Ashes ended, and yes you are thrown back into the story with a vengeance and no help remembering who everyone is. But how can you even be upset about that when it is so damn exciting straight out the gate?! I didn’t really get slowed down by trying to remember people until I got a little into the book. As I read, my Ashes memories came back to me and I soon got along without trouble.

How about that there gore? Yeah, it’s there. This is pretty much a zombie book, so I’m not sure why so many people seem surprised by the amount of gore in it. This isn’t Twilight folks, we have real monsters here. Bad crap happens, people die, and no one friggin’ sparkles. In other words, it was gruesome and cringe-worthy. That’s fine with me.

I must be one of the few who barely noticed the shifting perspectives. There were parts of the story that I liked better than others, but overall I wasn’t distracted or annoyed by the multiple perspectives. I guess I enjoy the different perspectives because Bick has such a deep understanding of how people’s minds work. Each of the characters feel different when things are in their perspective thanks to the psychological quirks they have. This woman knows people…especially crazy people.

So why four stars instead of the five stars I gave Ashes? Well, it is a little slower than Ashes. It does suffer a bit from middle book syndrome. It’s a book that is getting us to someplace bigger. Ashes blew me away because it dragged you into a world that was exploding. This book is like a lot of other books that show you a world after it’s already exploded. That’s just not quite as awesome to me.

And that cliffhanger ending. I’m not saying I wasn’t expecting it. I’m just saying…grr. In the end though, any book that makes me this damn upset is an awesome book. I have a feeling Bick will end this trilogy with a book so mind blowing it makes Ashes look boring. And I can’t wait.

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