Shadowlands by Kate Brian
Rating: 4.5/5 Stars
Genres: Thriller, Mystery
Release Date: January 8th, 2013
Rory Miller had one chance to fight back and she took it. Rory survived and the serial killer who attacked her escaped. Now that the infamous Steven Nell is on the loose, Rory must enter the witness protection program. Entering the program alongside her, is her father and sister Darcy. The trio starts a new life and a new beginning leaving their friends and family behind without a goodbye.
Starting over in a new town with only each other is unimaginable for Rory and Darcy. They were inseparable as children but now they can barely stand each other. As the sisters settle in to Juniper Landing, a picturesque vacation island, it seems like their new home may be just the fresh start they need. They fall in with a group of beautiful, carefree teens and spend their days surfing, partying on the beach, and hiking into endless sunsets. Just as they’re starting to feel safe again, one of their new friends goes missing. Is it a coincidence? Or is the nightmare beginning all over again?
Shadowlands was a bit of a special book for me. I had barely read any reviews before diving in (which is especially unusual for me as a blogger), I really had no previous expectations, and I went into it not really knowing what it was about. This surprise factor played well into my enjoyment level of this novel, and I ended up really, really liking this book.
The best part about this novel had to be the mystery. Something wasn’t quite right, and I was on my toes the entire time trying to figure out what it was. The plot twists thrown in were fantastic, and blew me away. Seriously. As I was reading the book, time after time, I was proved wrong, and I loved that.I know some people would have problem with the twist at the end, but I actually rather enjoyed it, since I had absolutely no idea that it was coming. It was fantastic. And at the end, I was left with my mouth hanging open, saying “askdaslkjf;lak”. That almost never happens to me.
This book was also unique (and riveting) because of the fact that we got the POV of the murder at times, which was seriously awesome. It gave us even more clues as to what was happening, but also some red herrings. The POV of the murderer also adding a chilling effect to the book, and made me feel very, very happy that I was reading this one at school in the day time. It’s not often that I feel that way with scary books (it takes a lot to scare me, seriously), so it was refreshing to actually be… scared, for once (although, I’m not saying that’s a good thing on a normal basis! ).
Rory, our main character, was pretty relatable, although a bit frustrating in the beginning. She shows some major growth throughout the novel, though, which was lovely to see. She actually became a stronger person, and didn’t let her past experiences ruin her. Of course, seeing the effects of the traumatic experiences she had to go through was also really interesting, and I liked how she eventually coped with them. It was a great realistic experience.
However, I did have some frustrations with this novel. As I was reading Shadowlands, I had a bajillion questions going through my head, and after every page, I had even more. Answers were scarce however, and things only added up at the end. It was frustrating to go so long with such little answers, and so many questions. Also, the romance proved to be a big question mark here for me. It was kind of there, yet kind of not. I couldn’t really get a grasp on it, and it definitely provided for some frustration as well.
Overall, this book. It blew my mind, guys. It’s been such a long time since I read it, yet it’s still been in my head since then. The twists, the POV of the murderer, the everything, made it such a remarkable read for me. Even with the slight frustrations that I had, this is one that I would recommend to all mystery fans. It’s different, gutsy, and just what I like.