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Secrets of Neverak

(A Tale of Light and Shadow #2)

4.25  ·  Rating details ·  124 ratings  ·  31 reviews
Henry Vestin believed that despite being only a carpenter he could lead Isabelle and their friends to safety. He thought he could defy an emperor and protect Isabelle from harm. He was certain that love and friendship would be enough to survive.

He was wrong.

The Secrets of Neverak follows Henry and his friends after the disastrous battle at the Iron Pass. Horrors await them
Hardcover, 512 pages
Published July 7th 2015 by Shadow Mountain
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4.25  · 
Rating details
 ·  124 ratings  ·  31 reviews

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Tressa (Wishful Endings)
I really enjoyed the prequel novella and first book in this series, but I can honestly say that book two, Secrets of Neverak, blew me away! I was engaged, consumed, and on the edge of my seat from the first page to the end. What would the characters do? What would happen? Would they all be safe in the end? From reading the first book, I knew that I couldn't count on everyone staying safe, so I was a little worried about where the story would lead and who would be there in the end. The journey wa ...more
I enjoyed the first book but I loved this one!! Isabelle has been separated from the group so we get her story as well as what's happening with everyone else. There are plenty of trials for all of them. The characters are quite flawed and make plenty of bad decisions. They meet a new character along the way who joins them.

One of the characters is a storyteller and I loved all the stories and connections that are introduced throughout the book. There were times that I thought I might have missed
Sep 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites

I don’t want to say too much and spoil things. So you’ll have to believe me when I say you will want to read this book. (If you haven’t read the first book, go ahead and buy that one too.)

There are deep themes in this marvelous story. The puzzle pieces fit together perfectly too.

Isabelle is my favorite character. She represents unconditional love. She’s the pillar for the others. In the last book, she was captured by Emperor Krallick to become his concubine. He has quite a few of them too. The
Sep 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book. The first one, like many fantasy series, started out a bit slow but when it picked up, I was hooked. The world’s politics, magic system, and cultures were woven together seamlessly to create something I was able to easily lose myself in. While the first book may have dragged at the beginning, this one certainly didn’t. It opened with Henry recovering from the wounds he received in the battle at the end of the last book, and the friends entering the Iron Pass—a forest where str ...more
May 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Where is book three? Now that I have finished Secrets of Neverak, (which is a total cliff-hanger) I need book three! Book One ended with Isabelle a captive in Emperor Ivan's palace of concubines being prepared for her first night with him, while Henry, James, Ruther and Maggie struggle through continuing problems and dangers. As the group of travelers meet each obstacle, their individual destinies in the looming war and the fate of two empires start to become more clear. More and more of the sid ...more
Mar 05, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy, young-adult
Unfortunately I am about finished with Secrets of Neverak only to find out there is no book 3, no conclusion to A Tale of Light and Shadow (as of March 5, 2018). At least not until the author feels he can afford to do so. Sales were not good enough for books 1 and 2 even though reviews have been favorable. Needless to say, I wish I had figured this out before starting this series. The author (according to his blog) claims he intends to somehow let fans know how the story ends if he is never able ...more
Jul 11, 2018 rated it it was ok
I have a hard time with books that seem to never have anything good happen in them. I figure that at the end of the series things will all come together for the most part, but I just felt like the characters didn't really get anywhere in this book. They just constantly took one step forward, only to take two steps back. It was kind of depressing. I guess I can see some of the set up for the next book, but I felt like a lot of what happened in this book just wasn't necessary.
Sep 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars. The characters in this series have definitely grown on me. They are far from perfect and often make the wrong decisions. But that makes them all the more endearing. Such an adventure they have been on! I'm not sure when or even if there will be more to this series, but I hope we get to find out how their story ends!
Jul 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
Oh man. This is a first. Not only did I start this series not knowing it was a series I just found out the publisher didn’t sign on for the 3rd book! No finish! No closure! This is worse than a tv series that I like getting canceled (I’m looking at you Timeless). I really enjoyed these books and hope someday the author gets to finish the story.
Sep 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I rarely write a review, but I thought I should recommend this book to others. It is engaging and memorable. I have found myself checking frequently to see when other books in the series might be completed. It is worth reading.
Nov 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I liked this even better than the first book. On a personal level, the struggle with guilt and pride really hit home. My only negative is that oh, please, I need the third book to get published!
Julie Halling
Jun 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book was so good, but I’m very disappointed that the story stops where it does because he never wrote book #3.

5 stars for the books written and -5 for not finishing the series.
Mar 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
When the next one coming out? One review in 2015 said 1 year, but I can’t find it.
It ended on a cliff hanger. I’d like to read the next one.
Dec 13, 2018 rated it liked it
Much better than the first book in the series. But it didn’t end. I’m starting to wonder if the author knows how to write an ending.
Aug 27, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Couldn't put it down!

Very good book! I couldn't put it down. Gave 4 stars instead of 5 only because there were a few errors. Story is magical and amazing.
Jenna Killpack
Jul 30, 2017 rated it really liked it
Great story telling just wish the next book was available to read as it leaves off mid adventure
Zachary Flye
Jul 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Thanks to Shadow Mountain Publishing for providing me with a copy to read and honestly review!

Actual Rating 4.5 stars


Characters: Once again we enter the adventure of Henry Vestin as he and his party now have to rescue Isabelle from the clutches of the Emperor of Neverak. However, before they do they have a great many things to accomplish and adventures to go on. Isabelle, now a slave to the Emperor, wants nothing more than to be reunited her beloved and betrothed, luckily for her before t
Sep 03, 2015 rated it really liked it
I was so ready to pick up this sequel the second I finished reading the first book, and that is exactly what I did! This second book is over 500 pages long. I'm a fast reader and I have been reading this book as quickly as possible. I've been reading every spare minute, even during my whole lunch time. I'm also taking advantage of my 2nd grade class "Silent Reading Time". When my kids read, I read.

Secrets of Neverak has all of the characters in so much distress: mentally, physically, and emoti
Sep 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It can be hard to find adult fantasy that is clean enough for me to want to read it, but Jacob Gowans series A Tale of Light and Shadow fits the bill nicely. Not only are the characters great but the incredible challenges the characters face kept me turning the pages rapidly. I was slow to pick up this series because I suspected it would draw me in and never let go and I was right. Once I met Henry and Isabelle I couldn't help but cheer for them but everything was against them from the beginning ...more
Jul 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Continuing the series of A Tale of Light and Shadow, Jacob Gowans did an amazing job with Secrets of Neverak. I found it to be even more enjoyable than the first book with its action, suspense and intrigue. Along with a great plot, the characters were perfectly written, and I love the way their lives were interwoven. The reader will be laughing with the sarcastic and witty storyteller, laughing at the germ phobic emperor, and cringing whenever the vindictive bounty hunters are involved. Gowans e ...more
Sep 08, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read both Volume 1 and Volume 2 back to back. I prefer to do it that way so the story continues, although volume 1 ended well. This was a fascinating story from the beginning with the scribe paid to write the story to the storyteller coming in and continuing the story from volume 1. The characters are wonderful and the world is fun to be in, however, it reads more like an epic fantasy than I expected. I found myself skimming parts while others drew me to the edge of my seat. I smiled, shook my ...more
Monica H at the Readathon
I liked this book. I liked the characters, except when they started doing naughty things in Borderville. I like the writing style, although it doesn't make for a fast read. It's not difficult, just not as easy to read as other YA books. The character development is good, along with the descriptions. I was confused at first by what was happening to Maggie, but I liked Maggie a lot. She actually stayed true to herself. I liked Isabelle a lot as well. There are good lessons of friendship in this bo ...more
Aug 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The story continues--

And as the storyteller tells his tale you will find that you cannot put the book down it is so engaging you will read until the last word has been devoured -- But you are not the only one for you will also read of a scribe who is frantically trying to capture the story on paper :)

Fascinating details of Isabelle and her cleansing as she awaits to be called by the Emperor--can she endure it or will she find a way to escape and who might help her as she hopes for Henry to find
Aug 19, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: four-star

Wow! What an awesome ride! I loved that Jacob did what I wanted! More Maggie! So my favorite in these books so far right now is Maggie or maybe James. I really loved that he expanded on Maggie and her "specialness" it's pretty cool. I also liked how we got to find more out about Henry in this book!

For My Review of this book go to:

Jul 10, 2016 rated it really liked it
I thoroughly enjoyed reading both books of this series. I am soooo bummed there is a third book with no release date in sight but don't let this discourage you from reading them! I appreciated the fact that the book was clean all around. The characters become complex throughout the pages. It is a book that will draw you in -- what will happen next?!
Jul 25, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction, teen
This is the second book in the series. A book about friendship, loyalty and the consequence of choices made.
Aug 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
It didn't end here. So now I'll have to wait forever for the next book.
Elizabeth Reid
Aug 10, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: book-reviews
Formal review for Deseret News here:
Darris Garner
Jul 25, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I love this series. Great book!
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Other books in the series

A Tale of Light and Shadow (3 books)
  • The Fool and the Dragonox: A Prequel to A Tale of Light and Shadow
  • A Tale of Light and Shadow (A Tale of Light and Shadow, #1)