THIS BOOK. It was a delight from start to finish. I loved Evie's adventures and her relationships with Aveda, her sister, and Nate, and Scott. BasicalTHIS BOOK. It was a delight from start to finish. I loved Evie's adventures and her relationships with Aveda, her sister, and Nate, and Scott. Basically this book was the superhero story I wanted to read, and more.
A more coherent review to come closer to pub date!...more
...huh. Just a few thoughts if you're thinking of reading this:
1. Don't expect less gender stereotyping. 2. The representation of Native Americans sti...huh. Just a few thoughts if you're thinking of reading this:
1. Don't expect less gender stereotyping. 2. The representation of Native Americans still isn't great. 3. Jules (Jacob Black) feels much more interesting in this version. 4. Beau is less interesting than Bella, because it feels like Meyer is keeping to those gender stereotypes instead of letting Beau be a character on his own. 5. All the character names kept making me imagine this as taking place in the 1950s. 6. I have complicated thoughts about the ending. It is COMPLETELY different from Twilight, and I can't decide if that's a good thing or bad thing.
Tell Me More: Maybe I built things up too much in my head. After the throw-my-copy-across-the-room ending in The Madness Underneath, the next Shades oTell Me More: Maybe I built things up too much in my head. After the throw-my-copy-across-the-room ending in The Madness Underneath, the next Shades of London book set itself a high hurdle to jump. Unfortunately, I didn't feel that The Shadow Cabinet managed to scale that hurdle very well, even as it continues to set up for the final novel in the series.
Where the first two books were centred around Rory's discovery of MI5/the spooks, Shadow Cabinet finally expands upon the ghost mythology, the connection between Jane's group and the paranormal events dogging Rory's steps, and why it's so important for Rory to stay safe. Readers get a flashback to Jane's beginnings, and the people who have influenced her for almost her entire life. These characters are truly chilling, and they heighten the sense of danger in the series. That said, their appearances basically bookend the story, and I would have loved to see more of them to really cement the stakes that Rory has to face.
Unlike the first two books, however, pacing was more of an issue in The Shadow Cabinet. While there were chapters that felt almost breakneck in speed, there were others that moved much more slowly, enough that I'd have to reread some parts to make sure I hadn't forgotten a crucial piece of information. I'll also admit that the years between The Madness Underneath and Shadow Cabinet didn't help with the confusion I experienced. It was also harder to get a sense of where any of the events were happening--I found myself wondering more than once if I'd missed a sentence telling me which part of London the characters were in, because there wasn't a whole lot of description to set the scenes.
This might not sound like a big thing to consider, but it becomes an important point in regards to backstory that we gain in this novel. The titular Shadow Cabinet is dependent on geography for very specific and life-threatening reasons, and as a reader who's never been to London, I needed more reinforcement of where events were occurring so I could understand how they affected the plot.
The Final Say: Sophomore syndrome may have skipped right over onto The Shadow Cabinet, as this third installment of the Shades of London series doesn't manage to carry the momentum of the first two books forward.