Stalking Shadows by S.A. Hunter
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Well, this is a first for me, a sequel that is better than the original.
This book felt much more confidently written, the pace was better, the plot developed more dramatically, no sudden gear changes that didn't feel quite right (that is not to say there are no sudden gear changes, but they worked as dramatic devices) and the plot did not rely on High School clichés nearly as much. There were some interesting developments on the loose ends from the first book too, character development I wasn't expecting.
This plot was more original than the first and had me wondering as I was reading what was going to happen. It raised suspicions, then hinted in other directions, very good feints to keep the reader interested. The characters came into their own, rounding out from the originals in book one, Scary Mary, and settling into what I thought were much more real people.
I love Mary: she is prickly and speaks her mind a little too often, but you can see the defensiveness that comes from, but she can also apologise. Rachel is also a fun character: the plucky sidekick, but with a bit more depth than that I am glad to say. Cy and Kyle were a surprise in this story, I won't say why. The only character I wasn't sure of was Gran, she was acting at extremes and I didn't quite get her justification for the way she was pushing Mary, but maybe that was just me.
All in all, a very good read. This is exactly what it says on the tin, a romping good paranormal YA. Don't expect deep sub-plots, or daring challenges to the status quo, that's not this book's aim, just a nice quick, distracting read. I eagerly await number 3.
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