Review: Shadowlands by Kate Brian

Author: Kate Brian
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Age Group: Teen
Source: Netgalley
Good Reads  |  Amazon
Rating: 3.25 out of 5

Summary from Amazon:

Rory Miller had one chance to fight back and she took it. Rory survived… and the serial killer who attacked her escaped. Now she must enter the witness protection program. At first it seems like her family’s new home may be just the fresh start they need. But just as they’re starting to feel safe again, one of Rory’s new friends goes missing. Is it a coincidence? Or is the nightmare beginning all over again?

New York Times best-selling author Kate Brian is back with a haunting new YA series packed with dark twists and turns.


3.5 out of 5

3.25 out of 5

My Thoughts

I’ve mentioned before that I am an eclectic reader.  I love reading from many different genres, and although I have genres I don’t care for, I don’t think I have a genre that is my favorite.  The genres I like, I like fairly equally.  However, I do go through phases of which genre I’m into at the moment.  I don’t know if it’s the fall-time weather, the Halloween spirit, or something else altogether, but I’ve been really enjoying books from the thriller/mystery genre.  So, as I was browsing through my kindle books, looking for something to read, I came across my Netgalley copy of Shadowlands, and new it was the perfect time to (FINALLY) read this one.  Shadowlands by Kate Brian is quite the suspenseful read, with an eerie feel that was very difficult to put down.

Shadowlands certainly starts off with a bang, and grabs you immediately.  Practically from page one, you are reading about Rory’s attack (it’s in the book summary, and not a spoiler), and before you know it Rory is entering the Witness Protection Program along with her older sister, Darcy, and her emotionally-distant father.  Rory and her family end up in the island beach town of Juniper’s Landing, and although Rory is trying to relax, and put this horrific experience behind her, she’s struggling.  Not to mention, there seems to be something peculiar about Juniper’s Landing, and she’s terrified that her attacker has come looking for her again.

As I mentioned above, the action starts immediately in Shadowlands, and before I knew it, I’d read a huge chunk.  This is a very quick-paced book, and there was never really a good place to stop, because I just needed to find out what would happen next.  Brian provides quite the twist at the end, as well, one I certainly did not see coming.

Shadowlands is told from Rory’s point of view, and she’s a good narrator.  I liked her, and I could identify with her, even if I’m not really a lot like her.  She’s a nice girl, someone who’s pretty content to stay in the background.  Sometimes her sister and father really baffled me with their reactions to Rory’s attack.  I just couldn’t imagine family being even a little bit callous, like Rory’s father and sister were.  Obviously I understand that families aren’t as close as mine is, but this still felt a little bizarre to me.

So, you might be wondering why I only gave Shadowlands 3.25 stars.  Well, first, 3.25 means that I did like this book.  I would definitely recommend it to people.  It’s just that Shadowlands isn’t really the kind of story I go for.  The twist at the ending, although surprising, wasn’t what I wanted to happen.  Also, although I liked Rory, she isn’t a character that will stick with me forever.

Shadowlands is a hard book to put down, and had quite a creepy ambiance.  It’s the perfect time of year to read this one.  If you like a fast-paced book, full of mystery and surprise twists and turns, then Shadowlands is for you.  I won’t be rushing for the sequel, but only because this isn’t my kind of book, not because I found a lot of fault with the writing, story, or character development.

About Quinn

I'm a twenty-something children's librarian at a public library in Central New York. I've long left my teen years behind me, but I love to read YA and children's books. I have two adorable dogs. Ginger is a mix between a poodle and havanese, and Daphne is Bichon Frise. Other things I love: Favorite Movie: Singing in the Rain Favorite Book: Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen Favorite TV Show: Monk
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5 Responses to Review: Shadowlands by Kate Brian

  1. Didn’t that ending totally mess with your head?? I was in total shock!! Great review. I agree some of the characters act very careless and odd at times. And Rory is not a super memorable character. She’s just an ordinary girl. But I can’t get enough of this series for some reason 🙂

  2. I’m not usually into thrillers, but the summary of this plus your review have me intrigued. Now I have to know what the ending is even if it isn’t what you wanted to have happen. New one to add to my wishlist!

  3. I love thrillers, and this review really has me interested in this book. Especially the mention of a twist ending.

  4. I keep going back and forth on this one..not sure if it is for me either!

  5. I can’t decide whether to read this either, thrillers can be a bit hit and miss with me. After reading this I am more tempted, it seems fast paced and a quick read.

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