Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Shadow Weaver by MarcyKate Connolly

Title: Shadow Weaver
Author: MarcyKate Connolly
Publisher: Sourcebooks Jabberwocky
Publication date: January 2, 2018
Pages: 308
Source/format: Publisher//ARC

Rating: ☆☆☆

Synopsis (from goodreads.com):

The shadows that surround us aren’t always as they seem…

Emmeline has grown up with a gift. Since the time she was a baby she has been able to control shadows. And her only friend and companion is her own shadow, Dar.

Disaster strikes when a noble family visits their home and offers to take Emmeline away and cure her of magic. Desperate not to lose her shadows, she turns to Dar who proposes a deal: Dar will change the noble’s mind, if Emmeline will help her become flesh as she once was. Emmeline agrees but the next morning the man in charge is in a coma and all that the witness saw was a long shadow with no one nearby to cast it. Scared to face punishment, Emmeline and Dar run away.

With the noble’s guards on her trail, Emmeline’s only hope of clearing her name is to escape capture and perform the ritual that will set Dar free. But Emmeline’s not sure she can trust Dar anymore, and it’s hard to keep secrets from someone who can never leave your side.

The first in a dark middle-grade fantasy duology, MarcyKate Connolly weaves a tale filled with shadows, danger, and magic that has the feel of a new classic.

M Y  T H O U G H T S 

Emmeline has a gift to control shadows around her ever since she was a baby. Her only friend is her shadow named Dar. The Cerelia Comet passes through the lands every twenty five years and blesses those who are born during that time with a magical gift. All was well until a noble family comes to offer to take away Emmeline and to cure her of her gift. Dar offers to help but at what cost?

MarcyKate Connolly creates a whole new fairytale that entices your curiosity. She threads together a wonderful story about Emmeline and Dar who are on two different sides of the spectrum personality wise. The symbiotic relationship morphs into more of a parasitic relationship. Old world charm shines through the book with a a dash of magic.

When Emmeline befriends Lucas, she is not afraid of magic he wields since she also wields magic. Lucas is the Yang to Emmelin's Yin. He is light as day and she is dark as night. Together their friendship becomes strong. Lucas's parents are very accepting of him while Emmeline's parents are not. The two parenting styles contrast each other within the novel.

Emmeline shows character development throughout the entire book. She has always confided with Dar but finally takes a stand and lets Dar know who's in control. Emmeline always thought she needed Dar but in fact she was using Dar like a security blanket. Dar, on the other hand, would persuade Emmeline that she is her friend but little does Emmeline know that Dar had her own agenda. Oh, that twist at the end of the book! I didn't see it coming but it works seamlessly with the plot.

I highly recommend Shadow Weaver to those who love a dark and twisted middle grade fantasy. The novel teaches children to stand up for themselves but to also embrace the gifts they are born with. It sheds light on those who are willing to help others even if they are not blood related. The meaning of friendship and trust are important themes that readers will appreciate.

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