Shadow of Night – Brief and Possibly Last Review

Alright, alright, alright. So it’s officially been 2 and a half weeks of me reading book 2 in Deborah Harkness’ Shadow of Night. And I just can’t do it. I’ve mentioned before about how life is too short to read bad books. And I refuse to stand by and read a mediocre book simply because I’ve started it.

Here’s the thing: it’s not a bad book! It’s just not what I signed up for. You see in the first book I took the story at face-value. I thought it was wildly entertaining and it was the perfect book for me to read after reading the incredibly powerful, but completely devastating book The Fault in Our Stars by John Green.

When I started the first novel I thought it was really hard to get into. But with our move to a new apartment and multiple jobs, I was completely devoid of any creativity and any sort of escape route into a different world – something I very much enjoy having in my life. Yay books! So reading A Discovery of Witches in short bursts only made me want to read more, to be in that world just a little longer. The main characters have about a thousand flaws and none of them are endearing, they’re just flaws. But I overlooked it and took the book for what it was: fun.

The ending of that book was perfect, and I’ll give Harkness her due on that one. She ended with an absolutely perfect cliffhanger! So of course I had to go and buy the book and start reading it immediately to find out what happens. Unfortunately, I’m 219 pages in to the book and it’s just so slooooow! I don’t want to give you the wrong impression – it’s not as if the writing is bad, or the story is bad, it’s just all so slow. The back of the book covers more excitement than the first 200 pages combined.

See I’m the kind of person that loves action packed books. Even if every page isn’t action packed, I still like the way that authors can make mundane things exciting. I just don’t feel like Harkness has done that in this case. She did more so in the first book. But so far this book has been predictable and more of a love story than the “spies and subterfuge” they promise on the back cover. Perhaps I’m just looking into this book a bit too much and should take it for what it is, too, but I’m not sure I can do it.

So, as a compromise for myself, I’m going to read more of the book tonight (and soon, before I fall asleep. Note: it’s only 9:38pm and I’m already exhausted after sitting on the couch watching Boardwalk Empire for five hours. Such a hard life) and if I fall asleep tonight thinking that it’s still too slow, I’ll take a leave of absence from this book and maybe pick it up one day when I’m in need of a lighthearted story like before.

Until next time!

Rachel

email: rachel@booksandcleverness.com

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