These ‘about me’ sections, or even sections that inform you about blogs, have never been my forte. Much to my chagrin, I was never taught the unwritten rules of what you are supposed to say. The links at the side of the blog – Twitter and Goodreads, for example – are liable to tell you more than I could ever say in words.

Mostly, this will be a book blog. I read a lot, and I love to share my views on my most recent reads. I try to read a little bit of everything, but if you look closely you’ll notice I will occasionally become obsessed with one specific genre for a short period of time. Old books, new books, yet to be released books – I read them all. If you’re an author looking for advance readers or just wish for more reviews of a book you’ve already released, please feel free to contact me. There is a contact form at the side of my blog – if you scroll down below the Twitter and Goodreads sidebar you will find it – so drop me a message and I’ll be sure to get back to you in double time. After all, finding new authors is what makes the book world go around.

Thanks for taking your time to read this. With a little bit of luck, you will find my blog much more interesting than this mundane introductory section.

Saturday, 10 December 2016

Review: The Prophecy of Shadows

The Prophecy of Shadows The Prophecy of Shadows by Michelle Madow
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The Elementals series is one that called out to me for quite some time. It seemed right up my street, and yet I was tentative to start reading it. Such is so often the case with young adult fantasy novels – I’ve read so many that are much of the same, leaving me worried that I’ve read all the real ‘wow’ books.

The Prophecy of Shadows was a very fun read; however, it didn’t quite reach the ‘wow’ that earns young adult books four or five star ratings from me. Whilst there were some original aspects, there were far too many of those cliché moments for it to really stand out above the rest. Whilst I am interested in carrying on with the series, I won’t be rushing to read the future books.

I’ll start with the good, and then go on to why it felt so much like many other books.

The biggest hooray, for me, was the mixture of witches and Greek mythology. I love both kinds of stories, and mixing the two together earned the story so many points. Honestly, anything with mythology wins me over. There’s just something magical about mythology. With this story, we had more than just your simple demigod aspect. With this story, the deity blood is so diluted those linked back to the deities are merely witches. I loved this about the book. It took mythology without copying all the ‘this god had this child’ and ‘that god had that child’ aspect that you so often see in mythology books.

Then there was all the action. We’re thrown into things from the very start, pulling us straight into the supernatural world. It takes a couple more chapters for the pace to really pick up, but once it reaches a high point of the action starting it does not stop until the end. Things continue to build throughout, and putting the book down was impossible – resulting in me reading the book in one sitting.

I guess that brings me to my final positive points: the addition. Despite what I’ll go on to say shortly, the book was highly addictive. You’re pulled into the story, constantly questioning what is to come next. I love stories like that – it’s always great when you’re so absorbed into the world that putting the book down becomes difficult.

Now for the negative points, the points that stopped me from giving it a higher rating.

This book felt like so many others on the market. So many aspects were clichéd, felt as though they’d been taken from other books. I regularly had feelings of Harry Potter and Percy Jackson, along with many other of the big names. Whilst the moments weren’t carbon copies, there was a distinct feel of many other big books. This is not necessarily a bad thing – I’m just someone who likes a book to be entirely unique. I enjoy references to other books – such as the Harry Potter references that were made – yet this felt too much like other books for me to be able to consider it a book that stands above the rest.

A larger issue, for me, however, was the main character. I enjoyed her, yes. I did not enjoy how she seems to be this all-powerful being. Even though she does not come across as being as overtly powerful as some other main characters, it is still very much there. By the end of the book, such is made very clear. In fact, I wasn’t at all surprised when the end revelation came about. It’ll play a big part in the future books, I’m sure, yet it links back to my prior statement of this book having a feel of other big names.

My final negative point is in regards to the romance. I really didn’t care for it at all. It felt too forced, too typical. It seemed to be shoved in simply because all young adult novels consider it a necessity. There was no real depth to it, with it existing mostly to create drama. In fact, it only fed into how some of the characters seemed to be overly clichéd. Our main female is adored by the male; the male is the hottest thing you have ever set your eyes on; there is a prior love interest to make everything messy. Truthfully, I could have done without the romantic element.

Overall, it was a decent read. I wasn’t crazy about it, but I did find myself pulled in. I just don’t think this first book in the series was for me, but I am hopeful of what else the author is going to give in the future.

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