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Cloaked in Shadow

(The Dragori #1)

3.77  ·  Rating details ·  1,187 ratings  ·  289 reviews
Romance. Magic. Lies.
For fans of elves, shapeshifters and elemental control.

Zacriah Trovirn is concerned with two things in life: feeding his family and dodging Petrer, the boy who broke his heart.

Heartbreak becomes a distant concern when Zacriah is taken to the Elven capital of Thessolina, where he is forced into King Dalior’s new legion of shapeshifters. But Zacriah
Kindle Edition, 330 pages
Published December 5th 2017 by Oftomes Publishing
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Steven Petrer is not the first and will not be the last sneaking snake to do something wrong and pretend he’s innocent.
Flo Riva Maybe you will be able to buy it via web in a site like ´Book Depository´
or ´Amazon´.…more
Maybe you will be able to buy it via web in a site like ´Book Depository´
or ´Amazon´.(less)
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Average rating 3.77  · 
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Ben Alderson
Jan 24, 2017 added it  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition

Thank you to everyone who has supported me and I hope you enjoy my book. It is out now and I am literally crying into my Iced Latte! Thank you all so so so so so so so much. IM CRYING. again. ALL DAY. This story means the world to me and I hope a young boy will read this one day and see how normal being gay is!

THIS IS MY BABY!!!!!!!!!

I am so so excited about this announcement. I am aiming to have it out early 2018, if no
Sasha Alsberg
Sep 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Disclamer: Ben is a good friend of mine but let me tell you, this book, is OUT OF THIS WORLD. I knew Ben was a good storyteller before he ever wrote Cloaked in Shadow but WOW did this book blow my mind! It was as if I completely forgot my best friend was writing this book. The story took over my mind and every twist and turn that this book bestowed upon me, shook me to the core.

Plus, gay elves?? WE NEED MORE OF THAT IN YA! I loved the romance between Zac & Hadrian, it was sweet but powerful and
Kylie Holiday
Dec 12, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
BLATANT SEXISM. The female characters are portrayed horribly!!!

Saw this book in the Goodreads newsletter and noticed the impressive ratings, and I LOVE LGBTQ fiction. But please do NOT believe the hype!!! This story is sexist in the worst way, delegating most of its female characters to one dimensional 'bitchy bimbo' stereotypes while the equally one dimensional male cast of Mary Sues receive the rest of the fantasy tropes. This is NOT acceptable in 2017!!! Here's just one early example, and
•• ana ••
Quoting Ben's not-official description "Beauty and the Beast inspired fantasy with Dragons, Gay Romance and Elemental Control"


Shut up and take my money.

I'm so sold. I need this.
Oct 02, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
An Elf nicknamed "Zac". That's enough to DNR for me right there. Let's break down the synopsis now: the author puts "feeding his family" and avoiding a love interest into the same priority category. Seriously?

Wtf is with the cover art? It looks like something that would belong to gay fantasy fanfic featuring an Elf that works part time as a go-go dancer in a gay club in Orlando. And I say that as a gay guy living in Orlando. YA- can't we demand better than this garbage?

EDIT: Okay gang, I need
☙ nemo ❧
this was nice, but underwhelming. it just felt like every other YA fantasy i've ever read, including the romance. the fact that it was an m/m romance was great, because we don't see that enough in YA (especially fantasy), but even so it was just all stereotypical.
Elizabeth Sagan
Oct 01, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Cloaked in Shadow made me think of Throne of Glass and ACOTAR and a lot of set-up books that put things in place before the shit hits the fan. It felt like setting up a chessboard, which makes me so much more curious about the sequel.
I had high expectations when I started reading it. And I can honestly say they were met. It was a really nice and enjoyable read.
I want to point out 2 things, though. First one, the world-building. It isn’t that it lacks in world-building (actually, it was pretty
Rachel E. Carter
Elves, shifters, and elemental magic, oh my! Ben's debut gives fans of the Shannara Chronicles something new to fangirl (and boy :D) over in young adult fantasy.

Okay, so I have to say First Year fans will love this one -I sent countless messages to Ben as I was reading saying things like: "OMG Priscilla's twin!" "Nyah is LIFE (Ella fans will love her)" "Your princeling is waaay nicer than mine (because Darren haters/those who love Ian will like Ben's book more;P)" >> Clearly Ben and I like the s
Dec 09, 2017 rated it it was ok
A few disclaimers before I get into what is probably going to be a very lengthy (and spoiler-filled) review:

One of the main things I think is important in a book review, or in any review, is honesty. So I’m going to be honest, I was a little bit sceptical when I started reading this book. The main thing that led to my scepticism was the amount of time that appeared to pass between the book being finished and its publication. Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither are good books.

The edition of
(tbh I came for the gay, but stayed for the story.)
This was everything. The whole time it felt like I was reading an ancient storybook because of the wonderful atmosphere and the breathtaking landscape. BEAUTIFUL. No wonder it is about elves.
And this book is about a lot more than you would think. Oh boy, the magic and the mythology/history... Let me tell you, it was smart and interesting.
I really need to get my hand on the next one.
The game has just begun.

I thought about this meme the whole ti
Gabrielle  (Wishes she had more time to read)
Beauty and the Beast inspired? Gay romance? DRAGONS?

*is here for this*
Apr 28, 2018 rated it it was ok

▪Plot 2/5
▪Details 2/5
▪Characters 2/5
▪Romance 1/5
▪World building 2/5
▪Magic system 1/5
▪Logic 2/5
▪Writing style 1/5
▪Enjoyment 2/5

1. Almost all female characters are portrayed horrible.
2. It feels like author was trying to write down all his sexual fantasies.
3. Magic system is weird as hell.
4. Writing style is awkward.
5. Romance is way too AWKWARD.

Still gonna read a second book. Why am I doing this to myself. Really, why?
Taran Matharu
Sep 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Why isn't there more YA fantasy like this?
Wish I'd got to this sooner.
Christine Spoors
Nov 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2017
I haven't been reading much fantasy recently, but Cloaked in Shadow has definitely reminded me why I love the YA fantasy genre so much. This is Alderson's first book and I absolutely love the world he created.

I really liked the main character Zacriah, it's always interesting to read from a male POV in YA fantasy as it's not something we see as often. He is such a likeable character and I liked that he is flawed, and remains so throughout the book. He is gay, and I won't say who he becomes involv
May 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I thoroughly enjoyed this romantic Elf fantasy - a real treat to read. The romantic leads, Zacriah and Hadrian are well-drawn and really sparkle on the page together, to the point where I couldn't wait until the next scene with both of them in it. I also enjoyed author Alderson's obvious love of the visual aspect of his world - especially the color. There are some wonderful details in this book - the claw weapon (LOVE), food details, the riding Elks - and I must say, I adored the idea of a moth ...more
actual rating: 2.7

Disappointing. I've been looking forward to this book ever since it was announced but no. I'm not going to write a review on it, not going to say any more. I hope others enjoy it but I honestly didn't and won't pick up the sequel.

(I should add though that despite everything, I'm glad this book had the LGBT character. As someone who's LGBT herself, I'm always hoping for more LGBT books and characters. I'm also certain Sarah J Maas fans will love this book. I think my tolerance o
✨    jamieson   ✨
"Our only enemy is within and once you conquer it ... you can overcome anything.

I have had this book in my kindle library pretty much since it released, because I was really highly anticipating it. When I used to watch a lot of Booktube Ben was one I watched a lot and I was really interested to see what his debut novel would be like. Also, the premise of this was so interesting to me. It's a high fantasy featuring elves and a central m/m relationship, which is ownvoices representation.

Nov 13, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4.5 ★★★★

“They say that fire is nothing without the air that fuels it. You are my air, without you I would just stop. I need you, I want you and I will get better and be there for you.”

Cloaked in Shadow es la novela debut de Ben Alderson. Había leído un poco de él antes en Because you love to hate me, pero con este libro creo que ha hecho un maravilloso trabajo. Al ser su primer libro, creí que encontraría muchos errores e inconsistencias, pero no, encontré exactamente lo que estaba
Dec 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
reread this gem in order to be better prepared for its sequel, found in night.

this reread was just as amazing as the first time i read it. zac, hadrian, and nyah have such a special place in my heart. i love them all dearly and cannot wait to continue on this journey with them!


this book was so magical and pure. i loved the characters and not once did i feel bored with the plot. cloaked in shadow will definitely be a book that stays with me for many moons to come.

if you
Jo Painter
Nov 01, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
First of all, I would just like to say a massive congratulations to Ben!

'Cloaked in Shadow' is being officially released on the 18th Dec, ( get your pre-orders in now, guys), but I was lucky enough to be sent a copy to read early and let me tell you, this will fill all the Elven voids in your life. Ben's ability to create a world of Elves where they are of all different races, shapes, sizes, personalities and strengths is what the fantasy genre is desperately in need of. Don't get me wrong, I l
Vicky (What Vicky Read)
I loved this book! A fabulous debut from Ben and such a unique story. I loved that the main character was a male as I haven’t read as many books with a male lead, plus the main character, Zac, was also gay! I really loved seeing his relationships emerge and how they changed and developed.

I will be writing a full review of this on my blog (it will be up just after the 16th!), but for now I just want to say that I loved this book. It’s diverse, it’s action packed and it’s just all round fabulous.
vatana 🦋
Gay elves are yay elves, y'all.

Claire - The Coffeeholic Bookworm
This was astonishingly beautiful!!

Zacriah Trovirn has got a lot in his hands: a kingdom reigned by an elfin King who's got skeletons hiding in his closet. a prince in love with a Niraen shifter, only he isn't really a shifter at all. A friend turns into a foe and a best-friend in the shape of a moth. Zac doesn't know anymore who to trust; even his magick plays tricks on him. When bloodshed rules the land, he must find a way to protect the ones he love and unleash his powers before he gets killed
Aug 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
5/5 STARS *****

A beautiful fantasy story from the first person perspective of a gay, male, mysterious and magical elf! Our main character, Zacriah, is so original and complex, I have never gotten so attached to a MC so quickly. As a reader, we discover his story right along with him. By learning about his powers, meeting other elves, and discovering more about the world around him we discover as much as he does.

Ben Anderson has built a wonderful cast of characters but most importantly beautiful
Len Evans Jr
Mar 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: owned
This book deserves at least 10 stars... it is the best epics fantasy novel that I have read in the last 5 years. The world-building is astounding, the characters are more real than some flesh and blood people I know. The story is on par with the writing of the very top level of epic fantasy. I cannot say enough about the journey this book took me on. I cannot wait till the second book is published, but till then I will have to reread this one at least several times, cuz there is so much more to ...more
Kristofer Pidgeon
Dec 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing
That was awesome! I’m sad I found it so soon because now I’ll have to wait for the next book. I rarely find an authors debut book to be so good, but this one was stellar. 😍
Feb 16, 2018 rated it did not like it
So I'm going to preface this review by saying that I do not intend to bash this book. As a writer myself, I would never want anyone to drag anything that I write, and I do think that Ben is appropriately enthusiastic about the publishing of his book, because it is quite an impressive accomplishment and he has a right to be excited about it. I don't intend to take that excitement away by expressing my opinion on his piece of work.

That being said, I will be honest with my opinions here. I will not
Peyton Reads
3.5 Stars
This book definitely captured my attention and was a fun ride all the way through. No single page was boring in my eyes. Cloaked in Shadow being Alderson's debut has left me feeling quite impressed. The writing was pretty good though there was an awkward sentence here and there and many misspelled words. The plot was predictable at times because of some common tropes, but it didn't take away from my enjoyment of the novel. It was definitely a fun novel through and through that sets up a
Kirsty Bonnick
Oct 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
So much suspense, shocking twists and sexual tension makes cloaked in shadow a must read for the YA book fans.
Every chapter includes stunning imagery and characters which take you to far away lands and it feels as if you can see, touch and smell everything right there in front of you.
A brilliant example of LGBT writing breaking the mold.
Alice (MTB/Alice Tied The Bookish Knot)
Right, can somebody fetch me a dragon so it can become my new pet please? I'll give you lots of cookies in return XD

I've been so desperate to read Ben's novel since hearing all about it way back in 2018. If you didn't know, Ben is a booktuber under the channel name BenjaminofTomes and has his own publishing imprint called OfTomes which this is published under. This beautiful YA Fantasy includes LGBTQIA+ representation, dragons, a wide array of interesting characters and plenty of adventures and
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"Ben Alderson is the book vlogger you want to know from across the pond. This 22-year-old UK native is steadily making a name for himself with not only his YouTube book vlog, but also his Instagram account ...where he is followed by thousands who can't get enough of his artsy shots of books."
- Teen Vogue.

Side from running his very own micro-publishing company, Oftomes, you can find Ben in the near

Other books in the series

The Dragori (3 books)
  • Found in Night (The Dragori, #2)
  • Poisoned in Light (The Dragori, #3)

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