Title: The Shadows Between Us
Author: Tricia Levenseller
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, High Fantasy, Romance
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Publication date: February 26th, 2020
Alessandra is tired of being overlooked, but she has a plan to gain power:
1) Woo the Shadow King.
2) Marry him.
3) Kill him and take his kingdom for herself.
No one knows the extent of the freshly crowned Shadow King’s power. Some say he can command the shadows that swirl around him to do his bidding. Others say they speak to him, whispering the thoughts of his enemies. Regardless, Alessandra knows what she deserves, and she’s going to do everything within her power to get it.
But Alessandra’s not the only one trying to kill the king. As attempts on his life are made, she finds herself trying to keep him alive long enough for him to make her his queen—all while struggling not to lose her heart. After all, who better for a Shadow King than a cunning, villainous queen?
“They’ve never found the body of the first and only boy who broke my heart. And they never will.”
Okay, I was so excited to read this book because after reading the synopsis I was immediately drawn in, and added to my TBR and became one of my most anticipating releases of this year, and I was so happy to see that I ended up loving it so much more than I thought I would be.
I think what totally sold this book to me was the characters, because they were absolutely fantastic. It was purely a character driven story, which is something that I don’t particularly mind if I like those characters, and in this case, I totally fell in love with them and would have loved to have ten more book about them.
Something that I enjoy about Tricia Levenseller’s female protagonists is that they all are so empowering and all are girly and badass, and this one was no different. I adored her and her personality so much, and I think that even though she had that though exterior she ended up being a very complex and flawed character, with lots of layers that we kept discovering as we continued reading the book. Alessandra’s inner monologues were pretty interesting and refreshing, and though at times she got me on my nerves, I still think she was such a powerful and a bit morally grey protagonist.
I also adored her relationship with Kallian. Though the major part of the book was focused on those two characters and the evolution of that relationship, I think she did such an amazing job at building that romance. Kallian and Alessandra had such great chemistry and dynamics, and I loved the scenes of them together and how that first relationship slowly turned into something more.
“I’m not a doll that you can dress up and leave alone until you’re ready to play with me, Kallias. I’m a person. And if you can’t respect that, I’ll pack my things and leave tomorrow.”
The romance was quite slow-burn, which is something that I particularly love in a book, so I cannot say I was complaining about that. It wasn’t insta lovey and it took a lot for that relationship to become more, and something that I really enjoyed was how those two characters became friends before that romantic relationship, which is something that I liked seeing.
However, a downside was the lack of world building. I think we barely knew anything about the world and the magic, because it was so focused on the characters and the plot, but it’s true that there came a point where I just didn’t care about that at all because I was so loving the characters and all the drama that was taking place.
When it comes to the plot, I think it was pretty interesting. It had a mysterious element that was keeping me engaged throughout the entire book, and since it was such a fast paced story that was so easy to get into, I found myself wanting to continue reading to see how things would end.
I would say that I feel the ending was a bit rushed and things ended quite suddenly, and because it was a very fast paced story, I would have liked it to take a little bit more time. There were some things that were solved a bit too conveniently, but that was purely personal preference.
“I don’t know what I’m doing anymore. But I do know one thing. No one but me is allowed to decide when Kallias Maheras, king of the six realsm and counting, is going to die.”
Overall, I absolutely adored The Shadows Between Us, and I was so sad when the book ended because I was so enjoying my time reading it. I think by far this is my favorite book by Tricia Levenseller, but I for sure will be picking up everything she’ll write in the future.
I received an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. This doesn’t change my opinion whatsoever. All thoughts are my own.
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