Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Book Review: Shadows by Ilsa J. Bick



I was a huge fan of ASHES, the predecessor to SHADOWS, as you can see from the joint discussion of it with Michelle we had last August.  My favorite part of ASHES was probably the cool way Bick integrated fringe science and made it believable and fun. So, I was unprepared for how much SHADOWS strayed into horror territory.  This sequel is Brutal with a capital B. I often found myself skimming over the gruesome descriptions of cheek biting and shoulder flaying and flesh eating.

In this installment, we don’t only follow Alex, but we get the story from several other points of view, including a Spared who seems to be going through the Change, a character who has been hidden by a compassionate older couple but who gets chased down by bounty hunters, a character who is captured by a sadistic militia who likes to experiment on Changed and Spared alike, and others. Thanks to all these POVs, we get a bigger picture view of just how horrific this post-apocalyptic scenario is. The multiple POVs also serve to move the different players into place for what I’m sure is going to be a major battle the third book, which means, in essence, I felt like a lot of this novel was merely set-up for the next one instead of really being a complete book with satisfying arcs in its own right.

Even though SHADOWS was too hard-core for me, I did manage to finish it.  I may be too much of a wimp to read book 3, but I will certainly want someone to brief me on what happens (minus the gore).

SHADOWS comes out on Sept 25, 2012. Find out more about it at the author’s website

See index of all dystopian reviews on Presenting Lenore

FTC disclosure: ARC picked up at BEA 2012


9 comments:

Lori said...

I'm so excited to read this! The horror and brutal factors only make me more excited. :)

Katie said...

I found this one a little brutal too but I loved it. I hope there's not as much gore in book three but even if there is, I have to finish this trilogy!

Zibilee said...

It does sound rather gory and violent, but it's been decades since I've let something like that stop me, so I might have to go ahead on...

Emily said...

I loved ASHES. I've been debating whether or not to listen to SHADOWS on audio, or read the book. I might just read it since it's so violent.

Kailana said...

I am not sure if I would like this or not. I might have to start with book 1 and go from there.

GreenBeanTeenQueen said...

Oh no! More horror?? I can't do horror! I loved Ashes a lot and I listened to it on audio. I think I need a bit of a recap though before I read the next one. I may be too afraid though.

titania86 said...

Love the horror, so I can't wait for this to come out!

anaavu said...

I unendingly loved Ashes last year (I'm still thinking about that cliffhangery ending), and I am excited beyond belief to read Shadows! The violence, the gore, the horror make Ashes unlike most other post-apocalyptics. It's easily one of my top 3 dystopians ever!

Ana @ BookSpark

writtenbetweencovers.com said...

I also felt like there were more major cliffhangers in this book. The ending of Ashes left me with a gasp, this book shocked me sometimes to the point that I felt a mental gut punch almost. Ilsa Bick definitely does a good job of keeping it raw. But her writing, even through the gore, is magnificent.