Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘'s Reviews > Shadowfell

Shadowfell by Juliet Marillier
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bookshelves: fantasy, young-adult, 2015-read, likeable-mc



3.5 stars. If I had to choose a word to describe it I'd say that this book is ... quiet. Look, quiet is not necessarily a bad thing - it brings a different atmosphere along its path, almost soothing and completely enchanting.



There is a lot of walking in this book, and when I say a lot, picture Frodo and Sam wandering in the Middle-Earth. That kind of walking.

The plot is incredibly repetitive, the whole book revolving around the fact that a) Neryn has to go to Shadowfell, b) she doesn't trust (with reasons) Flint, c) she has a power that makes her able to see and talk with fairies and other magical creatures. I won't lie to you, this is highly frustrating at times.



③ I might have been under a spell because despite the walking, despite the repetitions, I was never bored, but enchanted and enthralled. Will it be the same thing for you? Fuck if I know. I can't say without doubt that you won't be dying from boredom, but I sure didn't, not for a second, and it was a page-turner for me (trust me, I'm astonished).



Neryn is afraid but fierce, independent, and believable - she wants to be strong but doesn't succeed all the time and that's GREAT. She doesn't trust the first guy coming (I confess that I would have LOVED for her to trust Flint on sight, but hey, I'm weak, she was right, okay, I stop sulking - maybe). And if she sometimes takes risks, it's only because she wants to overcome the obstacles she meets during her quest.

"Weapons sharp. Backs straight. Hearts high"

If I had some concerns about her personality at the beginning, her courage and her perseverance definitely won me along the way (she's still a little bit of a special snowflake, though).

Flint is the best kind of characters : hard to trust, complex, morally ambiguous , conflicted. I can't express how much I'm eager to learn more about him.

"Become my friend and you embrace a nightmare. I don't wish that on anyone."

I might be crazy, because I felt attracted to this tortured guy from the start. *shrug*

The Little Folk speaks in a dialect that can be unsettling at first :

"Bide ye here awhile. Dinna be afeart o' the shadows; they canna harm ye. Sit quiet; ye look weary tae the bane. I willna be lang."


Strangely, it didn't bother me because a) it's rare and 2) it became easy to translate pretty fast. Don't ask me, I have no idea why, except maybe because it makes sense : contrary to many books that use a dialect, the author goes beyond throwing some words here and there, but uses a coherent language, and once the reader has digested the initial surprise, it becomes more and more easy to follow their conversations.



① The writing is really, really good, not heavy and flows smoothly. As far as I'm concerned, the way Juliet Marillier writes played a large role in determining my enjoyment.

Nothing is ever as straightforward as it seems : indeed while at the beginning the boundaries between good and evil seem to be thick and steady, we quickly realize that nothing is as simple as it appears. Good reasons can lead to bad choices, and the contrary is also true. This world is brutal, unforgiving, and sometimes there's no such thing as a right choice. To be frank, I can't wait to learn more about this world.

③ Although I can't say when this event occurred, in the end I care about every one of these characters especially Flint. God I love him, and in my opinion that's perhaps the most important of all things, don't you think?

PS. I don't know why the blurb says that Flint is handsome because he's not, and that's one of the things I loved about him.

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Reading Progress

September 20, 2014 – Shelved
July 22, 2015 – Started Reading
July 22, 2015 –
23.0% "The writing is really good but I'm still waiting for the story to really start. Also, Flint. Flint sounded really interesting. I'm not sulking but you know, almost."
July 22, 2015 –
55.0% "I get it, I get it, but DAMMIT that's still incredibly frustrating *headdesk*"
July 23, 2015 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-30 of 30 (30 new)

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message 1: by Marla Mei (new) - added it

Marla Mei I'm so glad you didn't get bored. I want to read this so badly but I think I need to be in the right mood for this or else I WOULD GET BORED. Especially if it's repetitive. Ugh, I hate it when nothing happens. It's one of the reasons why I didn't like Poison Study much actually. But if the writing is good though then we're okay. I guess I have to read this to find out. :D


Cee (The Mistress Case) True, true. Her books are very repetitive but her writing and characters make up for the cons. LOL, so much damn walking in all of her books.


message 3: by Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘ (last edited Jul 23, 2015 09:05AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘ Marla Mei wrote: "I'm so glad you didn't get bored. I want to read this so badly but I think I need to be in the right mood for this or else I WOULD GET BORED. Especially if it's repetitive. Ugh, I hate it when noth..."

Yeah you need to be in the good mood for it. I wanted a quiet book and it was perfect for me :)) And Flint is so worth it ♥


Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘ Mistress Cee wrote: "True, true. Her books are very repetitive but her writing and characters make up for the cons. LOL, so much damn walking in all of her books."

Exactly!! I loved the characters and the writing really did it for me :)


message 5: by Toni (new) - added it

Toni Fantastic Review! Damn you for me having to add this book to my tbr. Neryn and Flint both sound like awesome characters. Not that enthusiastic about the walking but anything can work with the right execution. And I read for the characters anyway.


Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘ Anna wrote: "Fantastic Review! Damn you for me having to add this book to my tbr. Neryn and Flint both sound like awesome characters. Not that enthusiastic about the walking but anything can work with the right..."

Haha sorry :D I hope you'll end enjoying this ♥ Thank youuu ♥


Susana I am glad you enjoyed it :)
I used to be bat crazy well... I still am about her first books I mean trilogies, lots and lots of them but unfortunately this one didn't work out for me -_-
I hate long walks through the woods ;)


Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘ Susana wrote: "I am glad you enjoyed it :)
I used to be bat crazy well... I still am about her first books I mean trilogies, lots and lots of them but unfortunately this one didn't work out for me -_-
I hate long..."


Thank you!! I completely understand, actually I'm still surprised of how much I enjoyed it (because it was such a looooooooong journey!). The writing and the characters did it for me :D


message 9: by Vanessa (new) - added it

Vanessa J. Ooooh, great review. I've added this one. Also, the ps... Not handsome? At last!


Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘ Vane wrote: "Ooooh, great review. I've added this one. Also, the ps... Not handsome? At last!"

Yay!! And yes I reread the blurb and it's so weird because they say multiple times that he is not handsome (I LOVE that :D) Thank you!!


Aj the Ravenous Reader Very well written detailed review, Anna. ♥


Chelsea ❤Peril Please❤ While this isn't for me, I can always support the new find of a tortured BBF O.O

Amazing review!


Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘ Aj the Ravenous Reader wrote: "Very well written detailed review, Anna. ♥"

Thank you Aj :)


Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘ Chelsea ❤Peril Please❤ wrote: "While this isn't for me, I can always support the new find of a tortured BBF O.O

Amazing review!"


Haha NO, not for you but you would have loved Flint <3 Thank you ♥♥


message 15: by Kathe (new)

Kathe L Brilliant review, Anna ♥


Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘ Kathe wrote: "Brilliant review, Anna ♥"

Thank you Kathe ♥


Melanie I just finished this last night, and I am completely under this book spell! Great review, like always, Alienor <3.


Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘ Melanie wrote: "I just finished this last night, and I am completely under this book spell! Great review, like always, Alienor <3."

Aww so glad you loved it :D Thank you!!


Thewalkingdreamer As a Juliet Mariller fan, I think that the early part of your review can actually apply to all of Juliet's work ! It is forever quiet while enchanting ! C'est juste magique !


Chelsea ❤Peril Please❤ Flint is the best kind of characters : hard to trust, complex, morally ambiguous , conflicted. I can't express how much I'm eager to learn more about him.

"Become my friend and you embrace a nightmare. I don't wish that on anyone."


Sigh....I just...I wants to meets hims.


Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘ Thewalkingdreamer wrote: "As a Juliet Mariller fan, I think that the early part of your review can actually apply to all of Juliet's work ! It is forever quiet while enchanting ! C'est juste magique !"

Yes, it really was :))


Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘ Chelsea ❤Peril Please❤ (of BADGER and Snake) wrote: "Flint is the best kind of characters : hard to trust, complex, morally ambiguous , conflicted. I can't express how much I'm eager to learn more about him.

"Become my friend and you embrace a nigh..."


Awww Flint - whatever I thought about the book, he was fantastic <3


Rachel Reads Ravenously I loved her other series as a teen but have been hesitant about this one. Great review! xoxo


Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘ Rachel Reads Ravenously (AKA The Wildcard Reader) wrote: "I loved her other series as a teen but have been hesitant about this one. Great review! xoxo"

Thank you! It's definitely not perfect... Repetitive and slow, but I liked it :) Curious to see what you would think about this one!


message 25: by Rebekah (new)

Rebekah May Great review, Alienor! This sounds like just the thing I'm in the mood for so I'll definitely have to check this out. I'm generally not one for epic journey books (aka The Long Walks) but I can't not give this one a chance given how good those characters sound.


message 26: by P (new)

P Great review, Anna :)


Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘ Rebekah wrote: "Great review, Alienor! This sounds like just the thing I'm in the mood for so I'll definitely have to check this out. I'm generally not one for epic journey books (aka The Long Walks) but I can't n..."

Thank you! Yeah, it's really slow at times but I didn't mind this time for some reason? I hope it will be the same for you :)


Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘ P.Z. wrote: "Great review, Anna :)"

Thank you!!


Jessica ❁ ➳ Silverbow ➳ ❁ Rabid Reads-no-more LOL, there is a lot of walking in this book. BUT. Book 2 rocked my socked off. FYI. ;) Great review!


Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘ Jessica ❁ Far Dareis Mai ❁ Rabid Reads wrote: "LOL, there is a lot of walking in this book. BUT. Book 2 rocked my socked off. FYI. ;) Great review!"

Thank you!! I need to get to this one ASAP!


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