Author: M.J. Hearle
Pages: 424 (ARC copy)
Publisher: Pan Macmillan Australia
Release Date: June 1, 2011
He's all that Winter Adams can think of. Ever since their fateful meeting at Pilgrim's Lament. Ever since he looked at her with those emerald eyes. Ever since he saved her life.
But Blake isn't all that he seems. There is a strangeness about him, something dark and otherworldly. Something dangerous. In his attic is a secret he would kill to defend, but Winter seems to have a special ability to make him forget his duty. And he is her only protection against the gathering darkness.
The only problem is, to protect Winter, Blake must risk exposing her to an even greater danger. Himself.
My Thoughts: While taking photos inside an old, abandoned church for the school newspaper, Winter Adams is saved by a man she's never seen before in her small town after the church's roof collapses. His name is Blake Duchamp, and he's beautiful with mesmerizing green eyes. After their encounter, Winter can't stop thinking about him. She knows there is something different and dangerous about him, but she can't stay away and neither can Blake, no matter how hard he tries. As their connection grows, Blake tries to protect Winter from others who want them dead...and from the danger lurking inside himself.
I love to read young-adult books from Australia, and since I haven't read much paranormal from there, I was very excited to read Winter's Shadow. What I liked about this book was that the writing really set the mood of the story. The atmosphere is dark and creepy and mysterious. I thought it was a good setting for a paranormal novel. I found the supernatural aspect to be pretty original. It's definitely not the usual vampires, werewolves, or angels. It was something I don't believe I've ever come across in other YA paranormals. I felt like I learned enough about it to be satisfied, but not too much so that I would continue to stay curious.
While it did have it's own unique moments, I felt Winter's Shadow mostly had what is usually seen in YA paranormal romances. If I had read this about a year ago or even months ago, I probably wouldn't have minded as much. However, I'm getting to a point where I'm starting to want something more than the typical storylines and characters with instant romances that include some kind of paranormal twist. I want all of it to be unexpected, instead of just moments in the last half of the book. And if it's going to have some of the usual, then I want to feel that it stands out among the rest by the time I get to the very end. As I mentioned, it did have it's moments, but overall, this was a case where I felt it wasn't too different from other YA paranormals I have read.
I think Winter's Shadow will appeal to YA paranormal fans who aren't necessarily looking for a story that diverges from the usual characteristics found in paranormal books. The book ends in a way that should leave readers wanting more. Thankfully it seems the author is currently working on a sequel, and after what happened, I'm hoping that the sequel will be a bit different. Because if it is, I look forward to reading it.
Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Thanks to Nic @ Irresistible Reads for sending this out! :)