I wasn't quite sure what to expect when E.J. announced that she would be branching out from YA to write an adult urban fantasy series. Of course, at the time I'd only read the first book in her popular YA series so I couldn't have formed a very good expectation in any case - but I was excited nonetheless. I decided to get caught up on the Spirit Guide series so I could really get a feel for her writing style and have something to compare Shadow Sight to.
E.J. did not disappoint.
While the Spirit Guide series has become quite popular, and with good reason, I have to say that I liked Ivy Granger better than any of them. One of the most refreshing changes was the lack of inner dialogue that you get from Yuki - like when she kisses Calvin and there in italics and/or parentheses is something like I love you, wolf boy... I was glad we didn't see hardly any of that from Ivy because it helped make the novel more readable - and it felt more like the adult book it was presented as.
One thing this author excels at is researching her folklore/mythology/etc. Some of the reviews I read weren't very enthusiastic about the amount of detail and explanation E.J. put into the different types of supernaturals, but I loved it. I feel that it's important to get that detail into the first book in a new series and I don't think she overdid it at all like some authors I've read have. The only thing that could have made it better would have been a pronunciation guide so I wouldn't have had to jump out of book mode on my eReader to google each uisge - thankfully, E.J. has assured me that this will be a feature of future books. :] I'll be interested to see how she handles it in future books - are we going to be revisiting a lot of the same creatures we've already met or will she be introducing a lot of new ones that require more detail and explanation?
Ivy is one of the most interesting characters I've read in quite a while. I loved how vulnerable her psychometry made her without completely crippling her as a person. I loved how fleshed out many of the secondary characters were as well - one of the most endearing things about the story was how Jinx took such great care of Ivy. I hope that E.J. will expound more on that relationship since it's basically the heart and soul of Private Eye detective agency. All in all I think Ms. Stevens did a really good job of building the suspense in the story. At first I thought it was a little convoluted - I was having a hard time reconciling the kelpies hiring a demon lawyer and so on, but as I read on things became clearer. The only thing I would change about the book would be the ending. The romance factor kind of blindsided me, and not in a good way. I would have liked the relationship to develop more slowly, possibly throughout the second book instead of being wedged into a few pages at the end of book 1. But we'll see what happens.
If you haven't picked up a copy of this book already, DO IT! It's totally worth your while. One of the most amazing things about discovering writers like E.J. is getting to be a witness to their development. Stevens' writing keeps getting better and better and I can't wait to see where it takes her - and us, her readers! Wherever it is, I know it will be amazing.