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Chasing Shadows

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3.72 of 5 stars 3.72  ·  rating details  ·  303 ratings  ·  117 reviews
“A superb novel about grief, friendship, and mental illness, mixing in graphic-novel elements and themes from Hindu mythology.” —Publishers Weekly, Starred

Corey, Holly, and Savitri are closer than family until a random act of violence shatters their world. A gunman shoots at their car, leaving Corey dead, Holly in a coma, and Savitri the sole witness to the crime.

When H...more
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published September 24th 2013 by Knopf Books for Young Readers (first published September 12th 2013)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,466)
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Keertana
Rating: 2.5 Stars

Although I loved Avasthi's debut, Split, I sadly cannot say the same of her sophomore piece. Chasing Shadows is, by no means, a bad novel but it simply was not tailored to my tastes. It is a tale of two best friends, Savitri and Holly, who must heal after Holly's twin brother, also Savitri's boyfriend, is shot by an unknown gunman in Chicago. Avasthi tells this tale using both words and images but, unfortunately, the graphic novel-like pictures didn't work for me. While extremel...more
Stephanie Ward
'Chasing Shadows' is a young adult contemporary fiction/graphic novel that follows the lives of teenage friends Holly, Corey, and Savitri as they enjoy life running through Chicago. Soon their world is turned upside down when Corey is killed. Holly and Savitri are coming undone in their own ways - Holly wants to find Corey's killer and serve up revenge, while Savitri is scared by Holly's actions and afraid that she'll be left behind. But how far should you go for a friend? And just how far is to...more
Jonathan Hiskes
Chicago teenagers leap across rooftops, solve a major crime, and visit a Hindu underworld. Y'know, teen stuff.
Michelle (In Libris Veritas)
Chasing Shadows really surprised me with how enveloping the story turned out to be and left me with chills. Centering around two high school seniors who must deal with the aftermath of the death of someone very near and dear to them, Chasing Shadows spins a fast paced and unique story of loss, recovery, and mental illness.

The backdrop of Chasing Shadows is Chicago which Holly, Corey, and Savitri have turned into their freerunning haven. This is the first book I have read with freerunning incorpo...more
Mrs. Kenyon
Corey, Holly and Savitri are a trio who would do anything for each other. Corey and Holly are twins that are closer than friends, Holly and Savitri are friends who are as close as sisters, and Corey and Savitri recently celebrated their one year anniversary. Between freerunning through Chicago and planning to get an apartment together during college, this threesome is inseparable. Then a bullet is discharged and Corey is dead. Holly is half a person with her twin suddenly removed from this world...more
Kelly
3.5

Corey, Holly, and Savitri are best friends -- Corey and Holly, twins, and Corey and Sav dating (though that's a very minor part of the story). The three of them spend their time together as freerunners, using their city as a gym. But the story begins when things change drastically, and a gunman shoots through the window of Holly and Corey's car. Sav is the only witness to the crime, but her memory isn't crystal clear, as she went into immediate shock and grief. Corey didn't survive, and Holly...more
Andrea {Bookish}
I love graphic novels. I think the art work is amazing. I love that you can get so wrapped up in a story through just pictures and dialogue. The fact that Chasing Shadows is both a prose novel and a graphic novel is something I knew I couldn't pass up. Of course, the synopsis did help a bit in my decision to read it.

The story itself is heartbreaking. Savitri witnesses Corey's murder and Holly's attempted murder from a car not 45 feet away and is racked with survivor's guilt. Holly herself nearl...more
Pamela ☼where's my aspirin☼ Tee
CHASING SHADOWS isn't the type of book I normally read. I'm an action oriented, zombie-loving kinda gal, but I read Swati Avasthi's SPLIT and was so taken with it, that I quickly picked up this book the second I saw that it was available

One of Avasthi's great strengths are her characters. They live. They breathe. They are dimensional and so realistic that it's hard not to be drawn into the stories where she places them.

In CHASING SHADOWS the principle characters are Holly, her twin brother Corey...more
Liza Wiemer
Swati Avasthi pushes the limits, and then goes even further to tell a raw, emotional, story of murder, friendship, love, sanity, and mental health. Using a combination of a graphic novel and first person narrative from two perspectives, readers will be hooked into the world Avasthi masterfully created. Bravo!!!!

Chasing Shadows tells the story of twins Corey and Holly, HS seniors and the children of a Chicago police officer. When a gunman targets their car and shoots Corey pointblank and barely l...more
Jo
4.5 stars
What a great book on all levels! The writing was excellent, and the merging between text and illustrations was seamless and intriguing. The story had great characters, great plotting and great sentences. My copy was a digital ARC and some of the words in the comic section were unreadable, but I imagine editing will fix that for actual copies sold. The violence is real and brutal. Avasthi rips the band-aid off quickly, but the pain of watching a family break apart is still there. The tra...more
Sara Grochowski
Savitri, Holly, and Corey are a team. Holly and Corey are twins, Savitri and Holly are best friends, and Corey and Savitri date. The three operate as one, whether at school, at home, or when they're out in Chicago freerunning. Their world comes crashing down one fateful night when Holly and Corey are attacked by a gunman while Savitri looks on, helpless. Now, Corey is dead, Holly is barely holding on after awakening from a coma, and Savitri is left alone, unable to fix what has been broken and u...more
Janet
Wow. One of those books that you juat have to stay up and finish reading despite having an early and long day coming up. Loved her first book--SPLIT--and this was just as powerful. When Holly's twin brother is murdered and she is severely injured, after her initial recovery, she begins to spiral into mental illness. She wants to rescue her brother from the Shadowlands in the personal of the Leopardess. Her friend and Corey's girlfriend who is lost in her own grief, tries to save Holly putting he...more
Jennifer
Summary:
Holly, Corey, and Savitri (Sav) are racing around rooftops in Chicago. They own the city and are carefree. That is until Corey is shot and killed and Holly ends up in a coma. When Holly wakes up, she is obsessed with saving Corey from the shadowland and finding the particular killer. She is doing erratic things and seems to be spiraling with her obsession. Sav wants to stay with her friend and help her through this tragedy, but is struggling with her loss as well. With time moving by the...more
Patty
Chasing Shadows (Junior Library Guild Selection (Random House))
By
Swati Avasthi, Craig Phillips


My " in a nutshell" summary...

Part regular fiction...part graphic novel...intense...fierce...sad!

My thoughts after reading this book...

Corey, Holly, Savitri...thrill seekers...waiting for college entrance letters...are out one night when Corey is killed protecting his sister Holly. Holly is severely wounded but neither she nor Savitri can remember who the killer is other than that he is Wirey. Holly rea...more
Linda
I don't often give stars to a book. Just because I feel like it's kind of catty. But the five star ones are the easiest. When a book blows you away, well, it deserves it.

And this one surely did. Clear your calendar, because you will not want to put this one down. I read it in one night, which is the same thing I did with Avasthi's last book, Split. She has a way of grabbing you and just sucking you in, no holds barred.

This whole book was a thing of beauty. And not least because I just lost my be...more
ElphabaNewlin
Remember my deal? That unless I already had them on my list to read or loved a book, I wouldn't count my school books towards my year's book count? This one falls in the latter category, and I had no idea that I was going to love it as much as I did. I got it from the library, but I think I want my own dang copy of it. It's just so good. And painful.

 photo amyhurts.gif

Holly, Savitri, and Corey are a tight knit group. Corey and Holly are twins, Savitri and Holly are best friends, and Corey and Savitri are dating....more
Laura (booksnob)
Chasing Shadows blends genres between its pages of prose and graphic art. It begins with Holly, Corey and Savitri freerunning on the streets of Chicago and little do they know that their lives are about to change forever. Holly and Corey are twins and Savitri is Holly's best friend and Corey's girlfriend. They are intimately connected. As they drive home, the unthinkable happens.

A Gunman.
Bullets.
Blood.
Screams.
Tears.
Silence.
Sirens.
Trauma.

One loses their life. One is in a coma. One is the on...more
Priscilla
Chasing Shadows is about friendship, death, grief, and insanity. The characters, Corey, Holly, and Savitri, are very close. When death strikes one of them, the other two have to struggle with feeling about their friend, the killer, and fight to keep their friendship intact, all the while fighting back the insanity that keeps creeping in to their lives. The author does a fantastic job creating the characters so that you feel their emotions. The book has hints of a graphic novel as there are graph...more
Kristin
This was good all in all, despite a few issues. This isn't a graphic novel exactly, but it does use elements from that format. Passages of regular prose are interspersed with comic panels to tell the story of how two friends deal with loss. Holly's twin brother Corey is killed when she and her friend Savitri (also Corey's girlfriend) are out free-running through a bad neighborhood in Chicago. Corey is shot while trying to protect Holly, who lapses into a coma from her own injuries. Savitri witne...more
Allison
3.75 stars.

Free-running! Hindi comic books! What I really enjoyed about this book was how different it was. The diverse main characters, the integration of the graphic novel format with the regular text format.

Another reviewer (not on goodreads) worried that teenage readers would read the novel as pure fantasy and not understand the nuance/undercurrents/see the other possible direction that the plot was going (view spoiler), but I think that is not giving teena...more
Mela
Good things: Well written. Realistic characters and voice. The merging of standard novel format with graphic novel is really well done - it makes sense and doesn't feel awkward or anything. And the artwork is pretty fantastic.

Things I didn't like: First person POV. I just prefer third person. I think this book would have been very different had it been third person, and first person made it more relateable, but I found it confusing that it also jumped back and forth between the two main characte...more
Swati
Nov 28, 2013 Swati rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  (Review from the author)
...but I might be a tiny bit biased.
Jordan
Chasing shadows is about a girl named Holly with her brother Corey and her best friend Savitri who free run. while Holly and Corey were driving home they were ambushed by a shooter Corey was killed and Holly was badly injured. While Holly was in a coma in the hospital, she had a vision of the shadow lands and Corey getting dragged in by a serpent person.One she woke up from her coma, she decided to avenge Cory's death and get Corey back from the shadow lands. I gave this action packed thriller i...more
Laura
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mary Farrell
This book is so well written. On the sentence level, and on the level of character and plot. I did not want to put it down, and read it in two sittings. It's not a book that allows you to feel comfortable. It is a close look at grief and mental illness. It also ponders the question of friendship and loyalty and does it very well. I highly recommend this book. It is part graphic novel and very clever in the way the traditional text comes together with the graphics. Everything is pulled together e...more
Eden
Chasing Shadows is about the friendship between Holly and Savitri and the people they are, together and apart. Thus, it's good that both girls are well-developed. Chapters alternate between their first-person narrations, and both voices are very unique; Holly uses capital letters that emulate the way she thinks and Savitri makes lists. And once Holly's mental descent begins, things get truly chilling — Avasthi allows her mindset to get murkier and murkier, while Savitri's confusion escalates the...more
Rich in Color
Review copy: the library

I can’t say often enough how much I enjoy friendship stories. That being said, Chasing Shadows was a completely different creature than I am used to. Reading Holly and Savitri’s story of friendship, loss and grief was definitely a different experience.

Holly and Corey are twins; Savitri and Corey are dating. The three are a close trio of friends who face risk headlong by freerunning all over the city, off high buildings and through alleyways. When Corey is killed, Holly an...more
Nikki
3.5 stars

The first 100 pages of Chasing Shadows were great, I really thought I was on my way to a five star read. The beginning involves such raw emotion and characters which came bursting off the pages that I couldn't help but love it, despite the sadness involved. Unfortunately I felt the last two-thirds of the novel was a bit dulled, especially compared to the beginning emotional turmoil. The rest of the book also suffered, in my opinion, from more POVs from Holly rather than Savitri. Holly i...more
YA Reads Book Reviews
Originally posted on www.yareads.com, reviewed by Nichole.

Chasing Shadows is one of those books that I simply read for the cover. I mean look at that. It’s gorgeous! Before I read the synopsis, I had no idea it was contemporary. And as you know, I’m not the biggest fan of contemporary books. But every now and then, I find a contemporary book that I fall head over heels in love with. This was one of those books.

The thing that most made this book was the pictures. I’ve never read a graphic novel b...more
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Swati Avasthi has a BA from the University of Chicago and an MFA from the University of Minnesota. She has received numerous awards and grant, most recently from the Minnesota State Arts Board. Her first novel, Split, has received a silver parents' choice award and a CYBILS award and was named a best books for young adults, 2011 from YALSA. Split was also nominated for a GoodReads Choice Award and...more
More about Swati Avasthi...
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