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Walking in the Shadows

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Seconds seem like a lifetime when the life you lived is slowly drained out of you by those who care not what you felt, hoped, or dreamed. When the darkness comes it is all-consuming; there is no light and there is no pain. It is the never-ending loss of hope that now consumes me as I die in his arms.

This is Abigail Martin’s nightmare. After her parents become the first victims of a serial killer obsessed with the vampire saga, "Crimson Reign," Abigail does the only thing that she thinks will save her from her parent’s fate–she becomes some one else. As Vera MacIntrye, she falls in love with the very handsome Tad Knightley, and then walks into her first day at her new school to see him standing at the front of the classroom. He’s every teenage girls fantasy, but as he writes “Mr. Knightley: AP British Literature” across the white board Vera realizes the one person who filled the gaping hole in her heart will soon rip it wide open again.

Vera struggles to adjust to being a ‘normal’ teenager with very adult responsibilities like paying the rent, buying groceries and making sure that lights stay on, while being drawn time and time again back to her off-limits teacher. What’s worse is he is drawn to her too, and their worlds refuse to stay apart when Tad finds Vera screaming in terror in the parking lot after the winter formal. The murderer has struck again and is getting closer to the next target–Vera. Tad will do whatever he can to save her, even if it means losing his dream job, but will it be enough when the murderer is closer than anyone ever thought?

GENRE: Young Adult>Romance>Suspense

358 pages, Mass Market Paperback

First published October 27, 2012

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About the author

Cassandra Giovanni

18 books630 followers
Cassandra doesn't remember a time when she wasn't writing. In fact, the first time she was published was when she was seven years old and won a contest to be published in an American Girl Doll novel. Since then Cassandra has written more novels than she can count and put just as many in the circular bin. Her personal goal with her writing is to show the reader the character's stories through their dialogue and actions instead of just telling the reader what is happening. Besides being a writer, Cassandra is a professional photographer known for her automotive, nature and architectural shots. She is happily married to the man of her dreams and they live in the rolling hills of New England with their daughter and two dogs.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 67 reviews
260 reviews104 followers
November 2, 2012
Having read In Between Seasons by Cassandra Giovanni a while back, I was eager to see what more she had in store with Walking in the Shadows. Let me tell you, this was not as good as IBS. It was better. Giovanni has emerged again, this time with a (dare I say it) more compelling romance, an intriguing plotline, and a story that is overall much more well—rounded.

Abigail Martin is a girl who now spends her life as Vera MacIntyre under the witness protection programme. With her parents murdered by a serial killer who seems to have an unhealthy appreciation for Crimson Reign, the new vampire saga, it wasn’t safe for her to remain where she was and so moved state. Now she’s at school, shocked by the fact that the guy she fell in love with just before term started is the guy who’s now her British Lit teacher. As if her day-to-day life wasn’t difficult enough, now she has to make sure that no-one ever finds out about them. It’s not long, however, until her life is even more threatened by the re-emergence of the serial killer.

I know what you’re thinking. Student-teacher relationship? So not gonna work. Or if it’s not that, then it’s about the vampire saga thing. Am I right? While those are totally understandable concerns, reading the book makes you realise that in this case, they’re unwarranted.

Abigail (or Vera) was such a remarkable protag. A lot of the scenes in this book take place in her Brit Lit class, which of course meant that I was taken in from the start, me being a Brit myself and lover of literature and all. This girl likes Austen and Wuthering Heights, for crying out loud. I loved seeing all the insights she had to all the texts they studied. But, student fandom aside, she really grew as a character. From the start she was strong, coping with a life your average teenager wouldn’t know how to; she was a lot older than her years. Equally, she was vulnerable. I loved seeing her grow from this girl who kept everything in to someone who learned how to let people in. She was more open with her emotions and actually grew to remember how to laugh and relax again, and it was incredibly endearing.

‘I am threatened by the resolve that you are my soul. You are my being, you are every breath I take, you are my home. The sweetest sin.’

Tad Knightley actually isn’t that much older than Abbi. There was something about the two of them that just clicked, and the fact that she both acted and looked older than her years definitely helped. I did grow a little frustrated with him at times. While Abbi was being much more cautious and telling him to be more careful because of the consequences should anyone find out about them, he was doing the opposite and telling her he didn’t care because he couldn’t keep pretending. But for all that, he was so sweet, and quite frankly he turned my heart to mush. It’s become apparent to me that Giovanni knows how to write an addictive romance. As was the case in IBS, perhaps more so, I was totally, 100% rooting for these two, constantly worried about who might find out about their relationship and wanting nothing but good things for them.

This is very much a character-driven book, but there were some other plot additions. The murder plotline didn’t start to come in until a little later, but it was definitely there in sufficient quantity. I was intrigued by the idea of a serial killer obsessed by vampires; admittedly, when the murderer was revealed at the end and there was a certain scene between said murderer and Abbi, I was a little sceptical. It did feel quite stupid, quite unbelievable to be honest, and I laughed at the ridiculousness of it. But it did also remind me of an article I read a few months back of a real case of wannabe vampirism, so I guess it’s possible. It was so sad to see both the physical and emotional impact it had on Abbi.

Overall, this was a highly compelling book. I loved the development of the characters and how they were well-rounded; I loved the flow. I especially loved the romantic plotline between Tad and Abbi. I was honestly just glued to my seat, wanting to read more about the both of them, both individually and as a couple. There was a beautiful mix of banter and seriousness. If you’re an unashamed romance junkie like I am, I can definitely recommend this.

A huge thank you to the author for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

This review is also posted on my blog.

Profile Image for Krystal Willingham.
55 reviews20 followers
February 12, 2013
I honestly want to kick myself for waiting so long to read this book because it was so good. I literally starting reading and did not put it down until I was finished, it really was that good.

I have to first start off by saying this book reminded me of first a television show, Pretty Little Liars, and then parts of a movie, Scream. At first I was iffy on the whole thing because I didn't know what I had gotten myself into. Was this a sort of fan fiction type thing or, to my happy relief, something completely different? The reason I say it reminded me of Pretty Little Liars is because in the show one of the girls has a relationship with her teacher, just like Vera in the book. The reason it has Scream movie moments was that in the book the murders take place because of a book that was made into a movie, where as in Scream a series of murders were made into a movie, which sparked even more murders. Anyway, despite the book sounding very familiar, it has elements which mixed nicely together and Cassandra really knows how to tell a good story. I love her writing style as it isn't filled with all this none sense that a teenager, even one that acts as grown up as Vera does, wouldn't actually say. It is also great that Vera seemed like a real person instead of this person that you knew could have never existed. For me, the characters felt real and that was just one thing that made this book much better for me.

I do have to say though, that there were some moments where I had to put the book down and do a silent scream because honestly it was frustrating, to say the least. I mean, I was never expecting anything to happen between Vera and Tad because let’s face it, even though the age difference is only a few years between them. It is still teacher and student and we all know how that works out in the media. Anyway, there were some steamy moments that I couldn't help but want to go a little further than they did. Call me crazy or whatever but you just can't help it sometimes. lol Seriously, I could tell that Tad didn't want Vera to answer the door any more than I wanted her too. LOL I became so emotional invested in these characters and this book it was unreal. I swear when I finished the book I felt so empty because it was over and I didn't want it to be.

All in all, this book was pretty darn awesome. The writing was consistent and the story, for the most part, was original and very entertaining. You fell in love with the characters and went through the emotional rollercoaster along with them. That for me is what makes the books a hit or miss and this one was a definite hit for me. This book also had its moment where you saw a side of someone who has gone through something so horrific and how each of us deals with grief and loss in our own different ways. Where one person cries for days and then is able to get up and move on another person could have a harder time dealing with the loss and end up locking it away inside him or her. For Vera this is what she did and it wasn't until she was able to put to rest what happened to her parents was she able to really begin to open up to people. It really is a heartbreaking but amazing story. I am looking forward to reading Cassandra's other book because I know it will be just as amazing.

*Disclosure Notice*
I received a free copy of this book in exchange for my personal and honest review. I was not compensated in any way. All thoughts and opinions expressed herein are my own.
Profile Image for Candace Knoebel.
Author 25 books833 followers
December 18, 2012
Walking in the Shadows was a very good story! I highly recommend this to anyone who loves a timeless tale of love and loss. The book is full of words of wisdom. From the beginning you are thrust into a passionate relationship between Tad and Vera (Abigail). But there is one major problem that threatens to keep them apart. Tad is Vera's English teacher.

Throughout the story, you watch them both struggle to keep their feelings locked up and secret. It's not easy for them to do because the love they share is very deep and almost kindred. They are a great couple to read and once you get to know them, the love they share is easily believable. It’s nice to see such a realistic and endearing relationship between two people. They are just so sweet!

But while she deals with the constant embarrassment of being in love with her teacher, she is also dealing with the death of her parents brought on by a Vampire cult. This cult threatens her mental and physical well-being. I don't want to spoil anything as far as the story goes, but it was a very easy read. I finished it rather quickly. It was fast-paced and the dialogue between characters was totally realistic.

My only complaint is that we don’t get to see the back story on how they met. I would’ve liked to see how their love came to be which would’ve helped make it more believable in the beginning. There were a few inconsistencies and hard-to-believe situations, but nothing that really affects the story's believability.

Cassandra is a very talented author. My most favorite aspect of the book is that it wasn’t just about teen love and quarreling and a bad guy who tries to ruin everything. There were real elements to this story that teach you rather than entertain you. You come away feeling humbled and a bit wiser. It’s refreshing to see in the young adult category.

I can tell that Cassandra takes her job as a writer very seriously. The book is full of information. She took Tad's job as an English teacher very seriously and added his lessons into the story. It was necessary and nice to see it wasn't skipped over for the sake of being boring. You learn right alongside of Vera as well as the other students. Any student in highschool will easily relate to this.

There is so much more that I could say about the genius inside of this book. Awesome job, Cassandra! Looking forward to reading your future works!
Profile Image for Erika.
212 reviews1,632 followers
February 22, 2015
This review can also be found on Living for the Books

Actual rating: 3.5

I don't think I've ever read about book about a student teacher relationship so as far as that goes I don't have much experience reading about them. I actually really enjoyed reading about Vera and Tad's relationship even though I thought it was a little too much for me at times. I guess that was because you didn't get to see them fall in love, you just saw them already in love.

So going into this book I had expected more mystery. I'm not exactly sure why because this isn't exactly a mystery book its like a romance book with murders. But that's not a bad thing because I actually really enjoyed Vera's relationship with Tad. I also loved Jaz. That girl was my favorite character. She was just an awesome friend to Vera when she needed someone.

The entire murder part of the book was actually very creepy. The murders were based off of the book Crimson Reign which is kind of like the Twilight of that world. I find it extremely creepy how someone would murder someone by draining their blood like a vampire if they weren't a vampire. Then that got me thinking well what if someone started basing murders off of the Twilight books? Now that would be scary. Imagine a sparkly vampire death...

I totally knew who the murderer was. It was very obvious and the murderer was a true psycho. It makes me shiver just thinking about how/why she murdered people. It was sick, but in a sort of sick way I like reading about that.

So overall I enjoyed reading Walking in the Shadows but it was predictable and I wish there was more of a mystery.
Profile Image for Julie.
48 reviews
January 24, 2013
I had prepared myself for a paranormal book since the summary mentioned “vampire” but what I read was so much more.

Vera is a senior and has moved to a new town after the murder of her parents. From the jump I noticed Vera is not your “damsel in distress” type; this girl is strong, independent and intelligent. Her love interest, Mr. Knightley (Tad) is her English Lit. teacher, yes sounds a little creepy, right? Wasn’t at all since Vera is 18 a senior and Tad is just a couple years older. I appreciated the single love interest, at the time I read this I was getting quite bored of the “love triangle” so there relationship worked for me. There are definitely a lot of tender loving moments in the book that caused me to swoon (doesn’t easily happen), especially a certain part that included a tattoo, sooo sweet!

Ok, so this book also had a lovely little mystery. Vera starts to realize that the “vampires” that killed her parents were now after her! While I had my suspect list, I couldn’t quite predict who the killer was because of a sneaky little twist Giovanni threw in there. What a twist it was, I kept reading page after page because I NEEDED to know who the killer was. Yep, I sure did suspect the wonderful Tad but in the end…

***I would have really liked to have read a bit more about George… he was so funny and a really likeable character. Overall, this was a great read!

Profile Image for Stevie.
12 reviews10 followers
December 7, 2012
This was a great book!

This was a book about a girl living in fear and trying to overcome the murder of her parents. She meets a guy and falls in love, but the relationship gets a little doomed when she finds out he is her new teacher. Nothing can stop the feelings they have for one another so while they are struggling to hide their relationship, the killer is right under their noses causing all sorts of ruckous again.

This story had a little of every type of emotion in it. You could feel everything she felt from her overbearing guilt and sadness. The angst she was truly wrenching.
Abbi became a true heroine to me. She was someone to stay so strong through all the heartache, anger, and guilt she carried. She never let anything get her down. She kept her head high and her emotions in check. It still amazes me she still had her wits and sarcastic attitude about her. I know I would have truly been a nut case. But I'm glad she could pick up and move on once justice was finally served.

I would truly like to continue this story to know more about what happens after she graduated. I know she found peace once she visited the graves, but I want the whole happily ever after! (lol)
O-M-G! Speaking of happily ever after! I am still swooning from this book! Tad was truly my kind of sexy prince charming! (lol)

Definately worth the read! I will be highly recommending it!
Profile Image for Evil.
74 reviews5 followers
September 20, 2013
Ok, I was a bit apprehensive on whether I was going to like this book or not. During the first pages, I thought it was going SO well. I enjoyed how Vera and Tad was presented to us. How it started with this problematic relationship between them and we had no idea of why. Then, the story was explained, in a very good way in my opinion. Tad is a British Lit Teacher at the school Vera goes to. We find out he did not know she went there and she was a bit scared of having to see him as a teacher.

Then we find out about Vera's background and her family. I really liked the story of her parents and how she wants to finally find out what happened to them. We find out they were brutally murdered and their story was told on a book. And we learn that a new murder, similar to her parents', has just happened. She needs to finally get over the sadness, the difficulty and the pain that she has felt since her parents' death and figure out, once and for all, what her parents were up against.

Not only this, but she also needs to work out her relationship with Tad and finally learn how to have someone who loves you so much, which is something she forgot about when she was left alone. They must figure out how to keep their relationship a secret while going up against supposedly vampires.

Overall, I LOVED the book. I would recommend it highly to anyone and I don't think it could be better.
Profile Image for Jessica Tornese.
Author 5 books25 followers
February 21, 2013
What I think I like best about Giovanni's books, is that she gets the reader right into the story. From page one, you are immersed into the problem and the character's emotions as if you had been along for the ride the entire time. The song "Don't Stand so Close to Me" echoed throughout my mind as I read this book; this forbidden but believable love story.
The plot moves the reader from feeling emotionally invloved in the book, to intense curiosity as to what exactly has happened between Vera, her parents, and a murderer on the loose. There are many different tangents the author takes you on, but the most important, is the journey of Vera, her relationship with Tad, and her acceptance to be loved and to love. This story gives hints of romance, but nothing overly inappropriate or offensive to young readers. The scene at the end is for a more mature audience, but I felt the author carried her theme of vampires and the crazy desire to be like them through until the end.
Overall, I enjoyed the book. It is not a typical choice for me, as I prefer dystopian and historical fiction, which is why I enjoyed Giovanni's "In Between Seasons" slightly more, but I believe this to be a fun read for young adults and very current topic for teens to relate to. Great job, Giovanni!
Profile Image for Tiffany.
15 reviews2 followers
November 9, 2013
Wow, I have so many good things to say about this book!

1. You like young adult romance
2. You aren't in high school anymore (continue reading for my explanation of this one)
3. You love a good mystery (honestly, it's more mystery than romance, but still a love story nonetheless)

This book starts out a little differently than most - rather than telling you how two people meet and fall in love (and having the story be about their new romance), this book throws you in. Literally dumps you into the middle of a relationship that has already been established, and I had the feeling that I had to run to catch up. It was actually a thrilling experience of not being spoon fed a story. I was a little lost at the beginning, but that kept me intrigued. I NEEDED to keep reading so I would find out who the characters were and why they were the way they were. It was a surprisingly wonderful new way to come at a love story.

One thing I kept thinking about as I read the book was how amazing the character development was. Since we are seemingly "dumped" into the middle of the story, into the middle of Vera and Tad's relationship, one would think there wouldn't be much time to develop the characters. However, through the raw realness of Vera's emotions and Tad's unending drive to protect her, we gain a very clear understanding of who they are and what their world is like.

The way Vera is portrayed is absolute perfection. She is a high school student but she functions like a 25 year old. Having lost her parents at the age of 16, she had to learn very quickly how to be an adult. Meaning, she lives alone, has to work to pay the bills, cooks and cleans for herself, etc. This concept brings up a few more points that I absolutely LOVED about this book:

1. As I mentioned above, this book is perfect for those of us not in high school anymore. Because I am older and have lived on my own, I can relate to Vera on many levels - I've gone through the awkwardness of high school, but I have also experienced the responsibilities of adulthood. Vera's character balances these two lives with an ease that shouldn't come naturally, yet seems to in her case, although she falters at times, which keeps it realistic. It was so much fun to read about high school and yet have a mature relationship at the same time, which leads me to.......

2. Vera and Tad's relationship is generally the type that would be frowned upon. However, it seems that NONE of the characters in the book who knew what was going on felt that it was inappropriate. And why didn't they? At first, I thought it was just because this is a book and no reader wants to see Tad go to jail. But then I realized that everyone sees what's truly going on. Because Vera has to function like a 25 year old, she is on the same level as Tad. They're on the same playing field, if you will. They have more in common with each other than with their peers. (And, honestly, they aren't THAT far apart in age...) :)

3. Vera is also relatable because of her emotional issues and how she copes. Most of us have lost someone, and we know what it feels like to go through the unfathomable maze of coping with death. We have questions like: What did they feel like as they died? Where are they now? Why them? Why me? Did they know they were dying? Questions I've asked myself a few times. I also related to the part where Vera dreams her father's voice. Gah, that almost made me cry, thinking of all the voices that I used to hear but will never hear again - and one in particular that used to come at me at the most unexpected moments, and now I can hardly even remember. I realize that Vera's parents didn't just DIE, and she has the concept of murder to deal with, but death is death, and loss is loss. She doesn't always cope with it well, and uses various (and familiar) coping mechanisms, such as anger, denial, lies, etc.

And TAD! Also pure perfection. I fell in love with him right along with Vera. I loved getting to know him in the bizarre way of coming into the middle of the story. And I LOVE their relationship! But is it wrong of me to applaud a relationship between student and teacher? It feels wrong...but right, at the same time. Typically, in YA novels, it's two high school students in the relationship. But Vera and Tad...they're on an entirely different level. I loved the moral dilemma that they are constantly dealing with, and the different ways each of them handle the pain of not being able to truly be together was so realistic. And I had this weird joy every time there was a scene with Tad as the teacher and Vera as the student. I LOVED reading about how they had to cover up their feelings and essentially deny it, while being so hot for each other. Tad is portrayed as a protector, and his strong arms and muscular chest are constant reminders of that. Plus, I love the way he had to swoop in a few times to protect Vera in the middle of school, and yet still act like he was only her teacher and nothing more.

I do kind of wish there was more intimacy between them, but I understand why there wasn't. It felt like they should have, though, since Tad is older and Vera seems so much older. More intimacy should have felt natural between them. There was a hint at it - when she dropped her towel, and when they were making out - but I wanted more. :) I know that she's not as old as she seems, therefore intimacy would have been an interesting topic to explore. How does she feel about it? Does her brain process it like an 18 year old or like the 25 year old that she acts like? ...That's just my brain being weird and overthinking....

Moving on, as I mentioned above, this book is almost more mystery than romance. I won't spoil things for any future readers, but rest assured, this mystery will keep you guessing. It was reminiscent of Meg Cabot's Heather Wells series. Let me ask you a question: when you're reading, do you ever find yourself skipping ahead down the page because you just can't contain your excitment and you have to know what happens next?? Whenever I feel an urge to do that, I have to hold my hand in front of the pages to cover them up so I don't ruin the suspense. I admit, I had to do that a few times for this one. I was so wrapped up in it, I couldn't wait to find out what happened, who the killer was, why they were killing like they were, etc.

And one of my absolute favorite parts of the book? The ending!!! In my experience with YA novels, you tend to get one of the following: a) a horrific cliff hanger ending that you were not expecting only to find out that you are months away from the next book being released, or b) a stupidly simple ending that is an insult to your intelligence. This ending was remarkable because it was neither of those! Everything was wrapped up, but we were (thankfully) spared the condescending "bow on top" that would have been your typical "and everybody was happy and never suffered ever again!" They still had emotions to work through. It was happy and realistic and conclusive, all at the same time. I cannot thank you enough, Cassandra Giovanni.

If you can't tell, I really loved it. I recommend you read it. Seriously, in the time you took to read this review, you could have already downloaded the sample. GO! DO IT!
Profile Image for A. Powers.
Author 9 books25 followers
March 27, 2019
I don't even know where to begin with this book. First of all, as an educator, this book got an automatic, NOPE from me that continued to flash is big, bold, red letters as I got deeper and deeper into the story. I kept hoping that maybe there would be some twist to redeem itself, but again, NOPE.

In all honesty, this book sounds like it was written by a teenager, in the midst of a crush on a teacher, who doesn't know how the world actually works. So this girl conveniently forgets to mention to her new college-graduate boyfriend that she is still in high school. He conveniently discovers this fact when he ends up as her high school English teacher the next school year. He never would have suspected her age because she's just soooooo mature (as evident by her refusal to accept or seek any kind of help after her parents die). But, you know, it's all cool because she will be 18 soon, plus they are in love, so that's totally allowable. NOPE NOPE NOPE. The moral of the story is that it's okay for a high school student and a teacher to date, as long as they don't get caught. NOPE NOPE NOPE. Ugh, I have to go throw up now.
Profile Image for Bonny Bon Bon.
122 reviews
August 5, 2013
Firstly I'd like to thank Cassandra Giovanni for giving me this book in exchange for an honest review.

I really enjoyed reading this book however i would have like the epilogue to have shown a little more into the future and let me know a few unanswered questions but this book is by far one of the better ones thatblet us know most of the end results :)
I must confess that I'm a sucker for the sentence "and they got married and live happily ever after" or words to that effect but although this wasn't what happens i thoroughly enjoyed the book and highly recommend it.

Oh and how good is the cover. LOVE IT

Our story revolves around Vera whom upon walking into her first day of a new high school comes face to face with her boyfriend Tad knightly aka her teacher. Although Vera knew Tad had taken a job at her new school, she decided to not let him in on a little bit of info which was that she didn't go to Amherst college like she lead him to believe but Amherst high school. Well naturally it comes as a shock for Mr Knightly to realise his college aged girlfriend is in fact his teenage, high school student and girlfriend and he isn't all that thrilled at first. OOPS!!

Throughout this captivating story we learn that Vera is really Abigail Martin and was placed in witness protection because her parents were the first victims in a serial killing which is believed to be based on movies called crimson reign that are about vampires. After a year of no more killings and although Vera has never put her guard down 2 more people turn up dead. that they just happened to be students at her school is an extra cause for worry.

Although her and Tad love each other very much they have a lot of obstacles to go through and with the constant dilemma of should they or shouldn't they break it off until she graduates its fun to see them interacting in his class. Everything he teaches, tests or any tasks in his class, there is always a subtle message or question specifically directed at Vera.

Vera/Abigail has a lot thrown at her and i admire her independence and strength throughout the book. She has forbidden love in the form of her hot boyfriend whom is her teacher - obviously a no no and if people were to know he would be fired. She feels alone in the world and seems to drive people away, she no longer knows who she is as a person - is she Abigail or Vera? She has a full time job so that she can afford her apartment and pay bills. There's also the added stress of another teacher hitting on her boyfriend and whispering things in his ear and a student lily who has it in for her and if that's not enough her parents killer is still at large.

I loved Tad and his willingness to stand by the woman he loved throughout the entire book and to conclude this review would like to quote a particular part i loved where Tad and Vera are fighting and he asks his whole class to write a poem about what they're feeling this was Vera's and Tad's surprising yet beautiful response

All that guides me is fear,
And all that finds me is loss,
Death defines which paths I cross,
It is within the shadows that I stumble
And I am desperate without a voice,
Here I am threatened by the resolve that you are my soul,
But if my lies are the path that I have to wander because there is no choice.
Will you love me still?
In the darkness of the night when I wish to do nothing more than take flight?
Will you hold me to this plane and ease the suffering and pain?
When all you know is the truth, And all they see is the lies
Will I be the one you find, or the one you leave behind?
Alone may be the only home I shall find

And Tads response:

I am threatened by the resolve that you are my soul.
You are my being, you are every breath I take,
You are my home, you are my sweet sin.
Profile Image for Jamie.
15 reviews2 followers
March 6, 2013
First and foremost, the summary for this story rocks. It completely captured me and lured me in, like a siren ensnaring her prey… Just listen:

Seconds seem like a lifetime when the life you lived is slowly drained out of you by those who care not what you felt, hoped, or dreamed. When the darkness comes it is all-consuming; there is no light and there is no pain. It is the never-ending loss of hope that now consumes me as I die in his arms.

This is Abigail Martin’s nightmare. After her parents become the first victims of a serial killer obsessed with the vampire saga, "Crimson Reign," Abigail does the only thing that she thinks will save her from her parent’s fate–she becomes some one else. As Vera MacIntrye, she falls in love with the very handsome Tad Knightley, and then walks into her first day at her new school to see him standing at the front of the classroom. He’s every teenage girls fantasy, but as he writes “Mr. Knightley: AP British Literature” across the white board Vera realizes the one person who filled the gaping hole in her heart will soon rip it wide open again…

Yeah, sounds awesome… and it was, kind of. Let me put it this way, the elements for awesome were there… but it just didn’t come together quite right. I would give Walking in the Shadows a 3.5 out of 5 star rating. By far the strongest element of this story is the plot. The idea that a serial murderer is out there mimicking a popular vampire book series is creepy but really cool. And the author does a great job making this plot interesting for the reader. Now imagine being the first victim’s daughter, trying to stay safe and live a normal life, falling in love with a guy who later turns out to be your new Brit Lit teacher? Yeah, I agree, awesome-ness.

Only, not so much.

I think the thing that wounded the awesome for me is that fact that the writer is definitely a minimalist when it comes to words… and I like to gorge myself like a gluttonous word monster. Description, details, and some diving into the depths of character motivations and thoughts would have really helped this story out. Instead, as the reader you are often left completely baffled as to why some particular thing just happened… For me, I was always wondering why Vera was mad at Tad, yet again. (She gets mad at him a lot). Eventually, I had to chalk it up to being in a high stress situation and being 18 years old. But I didn’t want to give in like that… it felt like a cop out. So that was frustrating.

But once you get past the starved prose, you start to really get into the story. Which I believe is helped by not only the plot but also the characters. You want to like them. You want them to be happy together. You want to know why these murders seem to center around Vera. You want to know why some of the characters in the story are so strange, or completely insane, as the case may be. Only, this adds to the frustration factor because you are back to the missing triple D’s (detail, description, and depth!)

If you are like me, you finish the story anyway, and you should... because it is a good story… it just has the potential to be so much more with a little more fat to it.

So, in short, well done author! You have a good story that I enjoyed reading. But in the future, if you wouldn’t mind adding a second, and possibly third, helping of thoughts and descriptions, I would be a very satisfied customer.
Profile Image for Kylee.
106 reviews
November 5, 2012
Originally on http://babblingofabookaholic.blogspot...

Having read Cassandra's debut novel In Between Seasons I must point out I feel like this book showed a different style of writing and she can definitely pull of both! In her debut novel she told the story of Kate and Hunter through dialogue. In Walking she tells the story in a completely different way and after reading her first novel I had felt she could only get better as an author and I was completely right! I absolutely loved Walking! This book is not only a romance novel but a mystery. Tad and Abigail's (I'm going to be using her real name, not the one she was given for protection.) relationship was so cute. I was cheering for them the entire time just wanting them to be able to be with each other and happy without complications or problems to stop them! If I didn't like Abigail so much as a character I'd go and snatch Tad up from her because let me tell you he is SWOON worthy!! This man is drop dead sexy and so, so sweet! The way he is portrayed throughout the story by Cassandra was perfect and his name is definitely on the never ending list of my book boyfriends. I love how strong he tried to be throughout the book and how he ended up always trying to fight for his relationship with Abigail instead of just giving up like she suggested they do. Abigail was such a strong person, I can not imagine how difficult it would be to lose your parents from a serial killer let alone lose them in general. It was so hard for me to watch her beat herself up throughout the story and not see what was so obvious. She had been through so much and come out the other side, if someone was put in her situation half of them wouldn't be able to come out as strong! I think Tad did a great job trying to show her how beautiful a person she truly was! Okay, enough ranting about how perfect Tad was. The mystery side of this novel comes from the fact that the serial killer decided to be psycho and follow poor Abigail to her new life. The killer decides to strike again and Abigail feels like she's going to be next. I assumed who the killer was earlier on in the book but when I was actually told who it was I was completely freaked out. The killer is literally some psycho path who needs to be locked up in a mental hospital!! I loved the twist of the Crimson Reign aspect of the murders and I highly recommend you all read this book. The story was beautifully written and the ending was perfect, I was definitely tearing up! It was such a great book, I didn't it to end.

Favorite Quotes:

They didn't understand, for we were Shakespeare and they were mere actors in the play. - Abigail

Seconds seem like a lifetime when the life you lived is slowly drained out of you by those who care not what you felt, hoped, or dreamed. - Abigail
44 reviews8 followers
November 11, 2012
A few months back, Ms. Giovanni kindly allowed me to interview her with ten questions. Why do I mention this? Because during that interview I learned quite a few interesting facts about this particular author. One of those facts is that Ms. Giovanni likes to dabble in photography. Why mention this? Because you get three guesses as to where this lovely book cover came from. Let me warn you that the first two guesses don't count.

As for the book itself. I'm not normally one that likes books that follow a more serious note. In Walking in the Shadows, the main character has experienced loss, the death of her parents. I tend to shy away from such topics in my books, probably because I'm a funeral director and see such things on a first hand bases daily. Give me happy in my imaginary worlds! Still, because of my profession I can honestly say Ms. Giovanni did an excellent job portraying the loss, the grief, the anger, and the guilt. When a person experiences death, they must go through certain steps in dealing with grief. I don't know how much homework Ms. Giovanni did on the MC's personal character but I could see some of those steps or rather the feelings those steps create within the pages of her book. So major props go to Ms. Giovanni on that accomplishment.

Now on to the actual review of the book itself. The story was intriguing and kept my interest. I've been in a reading flunk lately and Walking in the Shadows helped draw me out. Every moment I put the book aside, it wasn't long before I picked it up again. I wanted to know what happen and that statement should tell you something. This book is far from bad.

As for the writing, the pacing a bit choppy for me but still the dang story held my attention like my minpin holds on to my work socks (why just my work socks, I do not know). Basically the book teased me into captivation with it's story. What's more, the characters were a refreshing change to the fluffy airheads that tend to rise my ire in every other book. In Walking in the Shadows, the MC's were BOTH smart and mature. They thought of the consequences of their actions and made wise but hard choices. They didn't just jump and do. Very nice.

Overall, this books was a really decent read. Different from my usual genre's, it's plot still stands out in my mind. My only issue with the book was that the ending seemed kind of dragged out. Still, that one problem was a small nuisance in my enjoyment of Ms. Giovanni's book. Because of that, four gold stars go out to the talented author.

More reviews at

Profile Image for Elsa Carrion.
636 reviews92 followers
February 7, 2013
Title: Walking In The Shadows
Author: Cassandra Giovanni
Format: 490 epages
Genre: YA Contemporary Suspense Romance
Cover: Don’t judge the book by the cover
Series: No, Stand alone Novel
Main Characters: Vera & Tad

Losing your parents and having to grow up fast is exactly what happened to Vera. Emancipated to be an adult at 16 with the help of her god parents, Vera starts her new life on her own one step at a time. At 17, she meets and falls in love with Tad or Mr. Knightley at her favorite book store. Vera is not your typical teen; her looks and adult decision making makes her look older than she really is. She forgoes telling people her true age, which brings her more problems than what she already has in her troubled life.

Tad Knightley has just graduated college and is ready for his first teaching job. When he arrives to his new high school job, he gets a surprise he didn’t expect. Upset and confused, he confronts Vera and the truth comes out.

Tad, a few years older than Vera, is an adult where Vera is still considered underage. Their past will need to stay hidden if they expect Tad to stay out of jail. Vera is torn because she can’t be with him the way she wants and Tad feels the same. Theirs a crazy person killing people based on a movie that involves Vera’s past. Tad, friends, parents, teachers and students are all affected some more than others.

At first, when I looked at the cover I was confused about what the link was between the title and the book cover image but after reading the story I got it. On that note, as a reader I hate to say that I judge a book by its cover. I sometimes do and a lot of my purchasing decision making are based on pretty looking book covers. I believe that the cover can be changed to something better, but that’s not here nor there.

Great plot enjoyed the story tremendously. Who can truly believe that their relationship was wrong? Love the ending, loved the beginning; loved the middle, and loved all the crazy twist and turns. I loved the entire story!!! I wholeheartedly recommend this to all young and old.

I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion and review.




Profile Image for Alisa.
44 reviews6 followers
May 28, 2013
I was given this book in exchange for an honest review.
Wow! Talk about a crazy and amazing book. It definitely kept me guessing and the ending was truly not what I expected.
Abigail is only a senior in high school but has found herself running from a nightmare. Her parents were murdered by a serial killer that is obsessed with a series of vampire books called Crimson Reign. Her parents were murdered when the Crimson Reign movie was released and in order to protect herself she changes her name to Vera and moves to a new town. While she is there she meets a wonderful man named Tad Knightley, a student from the local college, and they fall in love. The only problem is that she doesn't tell him that she is still in high school. All is fine until he graduates and gets a job as a teacher at her school. As if that wasn't enough to deal with it is also time for a new Crimson Reign movie to be released and Vera fears the killer will strike again. Vera also feel that the killer may be getting closer to finding her.
This book is full of twists and turns and kept me on the edge of my seat. I am not a huge fan of horror or thrillers that are too intense so it was great that this book had the romance between Vera and Tad as well as a lot of humorous parts to keep it from being too much.
I loved the romance between Vera and Tad. Vera is such a sweet girl and you can't help feel for her and her situation. Tad is exactly what she needs. While I in no way condone any personal relationship between a teacher and a student I was able to overlook their relationship because when they met he was not her teacher and she is already an adult and a senior in high school. I also loved that Tad's last name is Knightley so he is referred to as Mr. Knightley; as in the character from Pride and Prejudice. That made him all the more endearing to me.
I hate when I know who the 'bad guy' is from the beginning of the book! In this story the author did a great job of not letting too much slip as far as who the killer was. Because of this I was constantly waiting for the killer to jump from the shadows and shatter Vera's world again. I did not even begin to suspect who the killer might be until the end of the book and even then the motive was a complete surprise.
If you want to read a great suspenseful book that isn't too gory or intense this is definitely the book for you. It contains no gore or over the top violence but just enough intensity to get your heart pumping.
Profile Image for Morgan.
124 reviews9 followers
December 9, 2012
I was half way through with this book in the morning, then I ate lunch, finished the book, went shopping for some school supplies, and now I’m here writing this review. Honestly I was not expecting to like this book, but it was amazing, and the characters almost felt real at times.


Vera- also known as Abigail Martin- parents have died, with evidence it may have been vampires. But vampires aren’t real, so this could be a cult..? She’s nervous that the killer is coming for her next, and she has no idea what to do, and no one to turn to, besides Tad; her English teacher, and the more she drags him into her world, the more his job is at risk. Then there’s a murder right outside her school for winter formal, and she’s worried that she’ll be next, and Tad is conflicted with his future, and she’s conflicted with who the killer is, and why exactly she’s targeting these people.

What I didn’t like:
•The fact that Tad didn’t care about his job at all. Sure it’s romantic, that he doesn’t care, and he wants her, but it’s very annoying that he’s so determined to keep her, and she wants him to keep/ have his ‘dream job’
•They way that in between chapters it could skip hours, and even days, and that got to me, especially when I wanted to see these scenes continue.

What I liked:

•The romance, and how Tad was always there when he needed her.
•Tad in general, although he got on my nerves he truly loved her and wanted to be with her, and comfort, and understand her in her times of need.
•They way they – Vera, and Tad- would fight with each other through assignments in class, it was funny, but it was also a way they connected, and learned more of each other. Sometimes though I wondered how the class couldn’t see the tension between them. A few caught on, but I was surprised there weren’t more.


At first I thought it was forbidden love, but I turned into something more, as the story progressed, and we learned more about the characters and their background. I really hope to read more for Cassandra Giovanni soon.

Favorite Quotes:

1.“I had pushed my past away and let my heart linger with him for too long. It felt as if my heart was stuck somewhere between his classroom and the coffee shop we met in.

Okay when I first read this I thought it would be a little like Aria, and Ezra, and they kind of were, but they had different problems to deal with, and I loved their relationship.

2.“I didn’t know where home was.”
Profile Image for Tracey.
649 reviews462 followers
November 7, 2012
Following the horrific murder of both of her parents by a serial killer who has become obsessed with the vampire saga "Crimson Reign" Abigail Martin is placed in the witness protection program under the assumed name and identity Vera MacIntrye. Bearing the burden of not only the grief of her parents death but also the now very real adult responsibilities of holding down a job and supporting herself. It's then that she meets gorgeous Tad Knightly, who manages to fill the void in her heart. But Vera has been keeping secrets and one of those secrets is about to be revealed to Tad when she walks into class on the first day back at school and see's that he is actually her new British Lit teacher.

Now faced with the fact that she can no longer have a relationship with the man who gave her the hope of being able to be happy again, she also has to keep their former relationship a secret. But things are about to get a whole lot worse as the serial killer starts to murder again.

Cassandra Giovanni has taken the student/teacher relationship and made it work. Once we had that initial 'oh no, he's my teacher' moment, I never really thought of it that way again. And it's not because it wasn't refereed to because it is but Vera and Tad are only a few years apart in age and add into that all that Vera has been through and she is much older and wiser that her years. In fact is was Vera who was the one pulling back from Tad in order to protect him and his job and Tad saying 'screw the job!!' But Tad and Vera are just naturally drawn to each other and one of the reasons is that Tad is just so protective and caring!! These two just fit together. Plain and simple!!

Outside of the romance there is the suspense and murder aspect of the book which was there throughout the story but really came into play in about the final third of the book once the serial killer again reared their ugly head. But for me it was definitely the authors easy flowing writing style and the romance that pulled me in and kept me engrossed in the story.

A very enjoyable read and I will definitely be reading more from Cassandra Giovanni in the future!!

Review first posted at YA Book Addict... http://youngadultbookaddict.blogspot....
Profile Image for Zakirrah BookBlogger.
301 reviews175 followers
June 16, 2013
*I was provided with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review*

I didn't know what i would make of this book but wanted to give it a shot and I'm glad I did!

3.5 stars!!



The book gets straight to it and we find out about Vera and Mr Knightley's relationship! Vera meets Tad when she moves to a new place trying to get away from her past.Little do they know that he will be her new English teacher and she will be his student!

“They didn't understand, for we were Shakespeare, and they were mere actors in the play.”

This book is about a series of murders which are linked to a new vampire book which people are going crazy over..hmm you must be thinking wtf does that mean are there vampires in this book? Ahh you will just have to read it to find out.The suspense kept things going and trying to figure out who the killer was..

I really liked Tad and Vera's relationship they were cute together.Vera did annoy me when she kept pushing him away and i love how he kept fighting :) Jazz is a funny little thing i liked her character she was a good friend.

“I think he has a girlfriend? Not sure though, he just seems to be off limits to all women here—well you know the other single women teachers. Maybe he’s gay?”
“I seriously doubt that one.” I responded struggling not to laugh.
“That would be a serious punishment to women kind. I wonder what he looks like without that vest and tie teacher getup…I bet he looks amazing naked.”
“Holy crap Jaz!” I yelped, but I knew I was blushing. I knew what he looked like with his shirt off and it was damned good.”

Overall i enjoyed this book but it would have been better if it was longer and had more detail or had more of Tad and Vera scenes outside of school..

Check out my blog for more reviews!

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Profile Image for Tracey.
341 reviews15 followers
March 13, 2013
Vera, previously known as Abbi leaves her home after her parents are murdered by a serial killer obsessed with a vampire saga. During the summer before her senior year of High school, Abbi meets Tad. Mr. Perfect for her ,and they fall in love. Tad is a college student who assumes she is also in college. Something she never clarifies. Since their relationship is rated pg, things seems acceptable until Abbies first day of school, at her new school under witness protection. English class becomes so very interesting when she finds out Tad is her teacher. Hello awkward.so there she is in love with her teacher and having to explain to him that she is a Hs student about to turn 18' Abbie and Tad are in a bad situation where they have to hide their feelings till the end of the year to keep him from loosing his job. Add to that the fact that a serial killer seems to have followed her to her to her new home, and seems to want her to be the new victim. There was a lot of things I liked about this story, The relationship between abbie and Tad was interesting. The teacher, student dynamic would have verged on strange, but the fact that they were together before he became her teacher, along with the genuine feelings they have for each other made for a great story. I know of a couple who are married who were student and teacher years before they married, after she graduated of course. Hey there are only four years of separation there. I love how the author made them intimate to a point but, but not enough to make it sleezy. Well written, and the relationship was believable. I just had one complaint, I was wanting more detailed interactions between Abbie and Tad. It was a cute story. But Damn, can you imagine their situation, seeing the one you love in a setting every day where you can't show your feelings.? The suspense of the story with the serial killer coming after Abbie was good too. I really enjoyed this story. I found myself thinking where were the hot teachers when I was in High school? This was a good read.
Profile Image for Francesca Dell.
43 reviews4 followers
December 29, 2014
Walking in the Shadows is a powerful book about a girl who has had her whole life turned upside down by the death or her parents. Unfortunately, her parents were murdered and now the murderer wants her.

Abigail Martin has to move across the country and change her name to Vera MacIntyre. She then meets Tad Knightley and they fall in love, unfortunately for them it is revealed that Tad is Vera's teacher at her new school.

This story opens in an interesting way showing Tad being very mad at Vera but not telling the reader why. It is only as you carry on reading that you find out the depth of Vera and Tad's relationship. What is so interesting about their relationship is the fact that they fell in love long before they became student and teacher, which is why it has such a large impact when they find out they have to try and stay away from each other.

The character development throughout the story is also very good as all the characters are very interesting and they have depth, leaving you wanting to know their life stories and desperately running through each page as more and more is revealed.

The pages in this book practically turned themselves as I was so excited to get to find out who the mysterious 'vampire' murderer was, this book has many twists and turns that will live the reader gripping the edge of their seat to find out what happens next.

Paradoxically, there is also a beautifully written love story throughout the book that left it me smiling with utter happiness when Tad and Vera were together and weeping in sadness when they were going through hardships.

Above it all though, this story is about finding the way to face your fears head on and to beat the challenges that face you. It is about, the difficulties and the happiness of love and it will leave the reader desperately hoping to find the kind of sweet, happy and all-consuming love that Tad and Vera have for each other.

A must read.
Profile Image for Nagwa Kureshi.
13 reviews25 followers
December 21, 2012
First of all I'd like to commend the author on such a fresh take on the whole Vampire YA genre! I received the book from the author for an honest review. Here goes!

Very very unique writing style. It's almost as if I was witnessing the conversations and understanding all that was going on!! This is only the second book where I found myself anticipating the conversations with the curiosity of a two year old. :)
As the story unfolds at its constant, comfortable pace (Read: What's-gonna-happen-next?!! speed) the reader gains a better insight into the main protagonist'a psyche. Why is she the way she is? Why had she to make all these difficult choices? And this realisation made me respect and regard Vera in a totally different light.

Vera is the strongest character that I have met. She knows her duty towards the memory of her parents... Her duty towards herself to keep her identity unknown, yet we see her waver because of her feelings for Tad. It is then that the 17 year old side of her (which she quickly pushes away with her sense of duty) comes to the fore and makes you smile. Her character has a beautiful graph... She makes peace about her feelings for Tad, lets others in, becomes less cynical and realises that at times its OK to not be so strong and let someone else love and take care of you.

I really hope there is a Tad for us all. Just one word for the beautifully cute High School Eng Lit. teacher - Spectacular!

Loved how the characters progressed forward. It draws you in and makes it impossible to put the book/ebook reader down! And when you do succeed, the mind works overtime poring over the scenarios read. By the time I finished half the book, my hands were itching to read more!

The poems by Vera and Tad were spectacular! I got goosebumps when I read Tad's answer to Vera's equally moving poem.

The highlight was the Epilogue because that's when we realize that Vera's demon's have been exorcised and that a glorious future with Tad awaits. :)
Profile Image for Michelle .
2,037 reviews239 followers
November 10, 2012
Walking in the Shadows is a powerful book. It is about many different things. At first you could think of it primarily as a type of forbidden love story. But on the other hand you can think of it primarily as an epic and unique murder mystery thriller. And finally you can think of it as a very moving and sad yet beautiful coming of age story. I enjoyed Walking in the Shadows a lot.

Vera is such a lovely girl. I felt such pain for what she had to go through. Because of events in her past, she has walled herself off from everyone. This is common in YA books, but Vera is super stubborn. She has such a hard time letting anyone in for anything. I loved her and Tad. He really did seem to be great for her. What I loved most about Walking in the Shadows was watching Vera grow enough to start making real connections in her life. I loved that she made a friend in Jaz and that Jaz was such a good friend to her. I think there needs to be more real quality friends in books.

I loved the plot of Walking in the Shadows. There are murders based off a popular vampire series. The killer drained the victims blood and made puncture wounds in their necks. How nuts is that? But it is also about a taboo relationship that I ended up loving right from the very start. My only criticism is that I wished the very beginning of the story could have been a little more clear. I understood what was going on, but I didn't really know much about Tad's backstory or why things were the way they were between him and Vera at the start of the book, but it wasn't something that really affected the story or my enjoyment of it. I just had a few questions I wanted answered.

Overall, Walking in the Shadows is a great book. Whether you like thrillers, romances, or gritty contemporaries, you should check out Walking in the Shadows. There is something for everyone and the story really resonated with me.

Profile Image for Stacey.
432 reviews53 followers
November 27, 2012
Walking in Shadows:
I was given a free copy of this book in return for an honest review:

Walking in Shadows is the story of a high school senior, Vera Macintyre who is hiding from a killer that took both of her parents due to the vampire novels “Crimson Reign” two years ago. Hiding on the other side of the state living in fear her past will come and find her. Vera is not a typical teenager; she has responsibilities like paying rent since she decided to have herself emancipated and her name changed from Abbi Martin to avoid the killer who took her parents.

When we met Vera, she is in her A.P. British Lit class with her new first year teacher, Mr. Tad Knightley, the same person that has been dating Vera for the past few months. Whoops, did she forget to tell him she was still in high school!

Every girl and single teacher in school swoons over the young scholarly hottie. Vera tries to keep her distance from Tad whom she is in deep love with, but understands if anyone finds out about their relationship he could wind up without a job or in jail. This is not a regular forbidden love/Lolita story; think more Romeo and Juliet minus the suicide. There is still a murder out there and with the upcoming release of the “Crimson Reign” movie the murder starts again only now in the town where Vera is living. Vera thinks she is next.

Tad can’t stay away from Vera even if it means his job, he must do what he can to protect the one thing he loves – Vera.

Hidden Romance, murder, suspense and prom. A great read.

“I am threatened by the resolve that you are my soul. You are my being, you are every breath I take, you are my home, you are my sweet sin.” – Abbi/Vera
Profile Image for Kirsty Bicknell.
657 reviews67 followers
March 19, 2013
'Walking in the Shadows' is ultimately a beautiful but difficult love story, which Cassandra Giovanni handles with sensitivity and tact. Underlying the love story is the fact that that Vera's parents have been killed under suspicious circumstances, with apparent 'bite' marks to the neck, and drained of blood.
Cassandra Giovanni makes an interesting statement upon social media throughout her novel through the suggestion that the vampire murders are connected to the book series and film release of Crimson Reign, which is based on a vampire coven (yes, people will make the obvious comparisons to Twilight but whether this is intentional on the authors part I am unsure . . Twilight is not the only vampire/book series!!!!!)
As the murderer appears to be closing in on Vera it has more affect on her relationship and Cassandra Giovanni cleverly builds the anticipation and level of fear for the reader.
I felt that the character of Vera was in conflict with herself. At times she wanted to keep away from everyone and have no friends and then I found her really needy. However, there is no mention that she has ever dealt with her grief so I think there needs to be some understanding of her, on the part of the reader, perhaps this is why I gave her and Tad a special dispensation.
Cassandra Giovanni is a special storyteller who creates characters and weaves plots which allow her reader to stay absorbed and interested. 'Walking in the Shadows' is a really good and original story which I definitely recommend.
Profile Image for Cobwebby Eldritch Reading Reindeer .
5,257 reviews297 followers
December 12, 2012
Review of Walking in the Shadows by Cassandra Giovanni
5 stars
Reviewed via Young Adult Reads Goodreads Group

I reviewed an e-book copy provided by the author, Cassandra Giovanni, via Goodreads Group Young Adult Reads.

“Walking in the Shadows” is a multilayered and intriguing YA-oriented novel which copes with some very serious issues. Death, love, social moral code, are just examples. Vera formerly was Abigail Martin, raised in a loving home—until her parents are simultaneously brutally murdered, in an event that is blamed on the novel series and movies, “The Crimson Reign,” concerning two covens of vampires in conflict. Sent into Witness Protection, Vera is legally emancipated as an adult, and lives in an apartment alone, employed by her godmother Kiera, in Amherst (after moving from Western Massachusetts). Still a senior in high school, Vera has met and fallen in love with a University of Massachusetts-Amherst graduate, Tad Knightley. She doesn’t tell him her age, and allows him to conclude she is a university student. That goes up in flames when she discovers he is her new high school British Lit teacher! A new murder in Amherst escalates the already tautly-wound tension, and Tad and Vera find it more difficult every day to keep the secret of their emotional relationship in order to maintain his job status.
Profile Image for Brenda Roberson.
218 reviews8 followers
September 30, 2015
WALKING IN THE SHADOWS is about many different things. It could be thought of as a forbidden love story or as an epic and unique murder mystery thriller. But yet you can also think of it as a very moving, sad and beautiful coming of age story. I thought of it as all of these venues.

Vera MacIntyre, whose real name is Abigail Martin, is a lovely girl even though she went through some very painful things. The events in her past kept her walled off from everyone. But yet Vera is very stubborn. She refuses to let anyone get close to her. Except for Tad Knightley. He is Vera's British Literature teacher. Vera finally grows enough to start making connections to other people. She made a new friend named Jasmine but everyone called her Jaz. She was in Vera's British Lit class and ended up being very good for Vera.

The plot of WALKING IN THE SHADOWS are murders based off a popular vampire series called The Crimson Reign which most of the kids at Amherst High School. The killer drains the victims blood and makes puncture wounds in their necks. It is also about a taboo relationship.

I normally don't care for YA novels. At the age of 63, I just can't relate to them. This one however is different. It captured my interest very quickly. With all the different "happenings" in this book, there seemed to be something that everyone could enjoy.
Profile Image for pinK.
478 reviews7 followers
December 4, 2012
Note: I received this book directly from the author for an honest review.

I found this book amazing. I started it fairly late at night just to get a feel for, planning to finish it the following day. I ended up staying up until two am. I only went to bed because I happened to have a final the next day.

The characters were great. I was easily able to relate to Vera/Abbi. I found the teacher/student relationship kinda "Pretty Little Liars," but Giovannni did better with that scenario than Shephard--by quite a bit actually.

I was able to figure out who the villians were before it was explained, but I was never able to figure out how it relatedto Vera's parents. This made the conclusion a great surprise.

This book still had quite a bit that happened even after the bad guys were caught, and that's not soemthing that's common in books these days. I found that refreshing. I end so many books wanting just a little bit more, but in this book, I got that little bit more.

I would definitely recommend this book! It was a lot of fun and was very hard to put down.
Profile Image for Erica.
31 reviews
August 31, 2012
I was a winner in the giveaway so in turn I would do a review. I apologize for the shortness up front.

I feel the story line was compelling, a fast pick up, and original. I am all for a story switched from societal taboos. The high school girl, Abbi, falls in love/lust with a teacher, Tad Knightly- it's usually taboo in society for a girl to have a relationship of an older boy/man. Fate turns a coin when she finds out it's her new high school Brit Lit teacher.

The characters were great and very fitting. However, the characters could have been more described, especially when they play such a large role (i.e. Lily). She is lightly brushed on as the pretty girl in class with a mean girl side. In the end she really is more involved than is let on.

I would recommend this book to any reader looking for something quick. I easily had this book done in hours. It moves really fast and keeps you involved.

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