Release Date: September 10, 2013 (original 2012 Australian release)
Publisher: Tundra Books
Series: The Rephaim #1
Review Source: Finished copy for review from Tundra Books
Synopsis: (from Goodreads)My Thoughts:
It's almost a year since Gaby Winters watched her twin brother die. In the sunshine of a new town her body has healed, but her grief is raw and constant. It doesn't help that every night in her dreams she fights and kills hell-beasts.
And then Rafa comes to town. Not only does he look exactly like the guy who's been appearing in Gaby's dreams, he tells her things about her brother and her life that cannot be true, things that are dangerous.
Who is Rafa? Who are the Rephaim? And who is Gaby? The truth lies in the shadows of her nightmares.
Some of my favourite Australian bloggers had raved about this book, so needless to say I was excited to read 'Shadows' and take part in the blog tour. I had high expectations, but this book did not disappoint in any way. I was extremely impressed with 'Shadows', in fact.
The book starts off a little slow, but in an intriguing way. You can just tell that things are building while the groundwork for the book is laid out. Gaby is dealing with the death of her brother, but her memories of what happened are hazy. She also has strange dreams, and things are just not adding up. And that’s when the angels and demons come into play. If you’re a follower of my blog you probably know that in general I am not a fan of angel books (the Unearthly series being a huge exception, as it’s one of my favourites), but this book? I loved.
This book works so well for a multitude of reasons. In order to love a book I have to connect with the characters, and that definitely happened here. Gaby is such a strong character, despite the disadvantage she's at. She’s determined to get answers, and she’s also very protective of her friends. There are a lot of great characters in the novel, but the main other one I adored was Rafa. *insert dreamy sigh here* For real, I loved how Rafa was tough and snarky, but also sweet and, dare I say, a bit vulnerable. And the chemistry between Rafa and Gaby? Epic and explosive. Of course there’s also some dicey history between the two of them, which makes things even more complicated.
Beyond the characters, Shadows is exciting because of its great world building and because of the high stakes. There's action and people are trying to use Gaby for their own agenda. Paula Weston does a great job of introducing readers to this world. We learn things piece by piece, as Gaby does, and even though everything is being spoon fed to us, it never feels like an info-dump. I was completely swept away by this world and by the characters. I loved the New Adult feel of the book, and I loved the Aussie flavour that came out in the setting. Everything about this book is fabulous, except the long wait for Book 2 to be released in North America. Honestly I think I may have to get my hands on an Australian or UK copy of Haze, because after reading this I am dying to see where things go next.
Find Shadows by Paula Weston on Goodreads, Book Depository, & Amazon.
Check the Tundra Blog for the full blog tour line up. It's running all week, with multiple stops each day.