Thursday, December 8, 2016

Review: Promise of Shadows

Promise of Shadows Promise of Shadows by Justina Ireland
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

"No chance for fate, it's unnatural selection

I was gonna write some words on my own book today, but then I cracked open Promise of Shadows. Safe to say, my plans went out the window.

This is my first time reading a Justina Ireland book, and just like how I started off a few months back with the works of Elliot Wake, I decided to go with Ireland's second book first. Another plan that's gone out the window - the plan to slip in part of my continuing Dresden Files reread between Promise of Shadows and Vengeance Bound. Based on the strength of Shadows, not anymore. I gotta go with Vengeance first, because my expectations are higher for that one.

What Ireland gives us here is a vivid, unputdownable story, taking inspiration from Greek mythology (and, unless I miss my guess, a bit of Celtic and Nordic as well, but mostly Greek.) It's a unique vision, punchy enough to separate itself from the Percy Jackson pack. Here, we get a Tartarus where it literally rains crap, flashbacks aplenty to Zephyr's past, and in this magic system, strong cases for Dark Is Not Evil and Light Is Not Good.

And also characters. Plenty of them, and plenty of engaging and unforgettable ones. They kick ass with the best of 'em, and yet never feel so superhuman as to be unrelatable. Especially because of their emotions, which, to Zephyr, often smell like fruit. Spoiled lemons, orange creamsicles, that sort of thing. (Which beats the grossgusting excrement rain of Tartarus by a long shot, yeah?) And for once, I enjoyed the shipping. (What can I say? I'm a sucker for childhood best friend ships.) Beware, though. There are a couple of major deaths among these characters that'll really set off your feels.

No wonder I spent my morning reading instead of writing. (Well, that and my coffee, which helped me yesterday but not today. It's weird like that sometimes.)

Next up - reading and reviewing Vengeance Bound.

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