Leah M's Reviews > The First of Shadows

The First of Shadows by Deck Matthews
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really liked it

I received a copy of this book from the author. I am providing an honest review voluntarily.

This is the first of a series of short novels, and sounded like an interesting premise. I have been really enjoying YA fantasy for a bit now, and figured it couldn’t hurt to broaden my horizon into the adult fantasy genre. My experience with adult fantasy has thus far been limited to the books in the series A Song of Ice and Fire.

When reading any fantasy book, it is expected that the author will build a complex world in which the story takes place. However, this also generally means that unfamiliar terms frequently pop up. This story is no exception. Initially, I found myself frustrated at the amount of terms that came up and weren’t defined. At times, I found it difficult to grasp the meaning by context alone, and I almost gave up after one chapter. But thankfully, the logical part of my brain told me to give the story more of a chance, and hopefully I’d be able to grasp more of an idea of what they meant as I got deeper into the book.

I also struggled with the characters. There were a lot of characters that were introduced very quickly, since the story takes place in several different locations within the realm. More locations = more characters to keep track of. Luckily for me, the characters were very different from each other, and I didn’t have any difficulty remembering who was who, and what part of the story they were involved in. The one thing that I didn’t love about this was that one character with a disability is repeatedly referred to as “crippled.”

Now for the good stuff: the actual content. I found the story itself to be well written and an engrossing one. I finished this book in a short period of time (keep in mind, it isn’t a long epic saga). It was enough to give me some answers, but I’m already thinking of getting started with the next book. The creativity that went into this book is astounding. The makings of a great fantasy series are present: magical abilities that I haven’t read about in other books, detailed and likable characters, flying ships, political intrigue, action, and plot twists that made it difficult to put this story down.

I really enjoyed the reading, and I’m so glad that I didn’t give up after just one chapter. While it was confusing at first, a lot of that cleared up pretty quickly. I’d definitely recommend this to people who are lovers of fantasy novels, as well as to people like myself, who are fairly new to the genre.
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Reading Progress

October 14, 2019 – Shelved
October 14, 2019 – Shelved as: to-read
November 20, 2019 – Started Reading
November 22, 2019 – Finished Reading

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