Monday, May 6, 2013

Book Review: Shadow Falls Series

 One night Kylie Galen finds herself at the wrong party, with the wrong people, and it changes her life forever. Her mother ships her off to Shadow Falls—a camp for troubled teens, and within hours of arriving, it becomes painfully clear that her fellow campers aren’t just “troubled.” Here at Shadow Falls, vampires, werewolves, shapshifters, witches and fairies train side by side—learning to harness their powers, control their magic and live in the normal world.

Kylie’s never felt normal, but surely she doesn’t belong here with a bunch of paranormal freaks either. Or does she? They insist Kylie is one of them, and that she was brought here for a reason. As if life wasn’t complicated enough, enter Derek and Lucas. Derek’s a half-fae who’s determined to be her boyfriend, and Lucas is a smokin’ hot werewolf with whom Kylie shares a secret past. Both Derek and Lucas couldn’t be more different, but they both have a powerful hold on her heart. 
Even though Kylie feels deeply uncertain about everything, one thing is becoming painfully clear—Shadow Falls is exactly where she belongs . . . Quoted from Goodreads


This is a hard series to review.  It started during the vampire craze, when every book had to have it's obligatory love triangle, and that shows.  It's not really anything new , but for what it is, it's a fun read.  I mean, I read all five books, which is saying something.

First for the things I liked.  I love Kylie's girl friends, as in friends who are girls.  Whether it's the best friend she left behind or the two new ones she found at camp, I loved their relationships. They were always there for her, while having enough of their own drama to keep everything interesting.  I mean, Della got her own novella (and maybe a spinoff series?).  Plus, they act like teenage girls.  They have silly moments, fight, and get jealous, but then are back to being friends again.

I liked Holley and Burnett. They're good leaders, have their own problems, yet have time for Kylie.  They don't sit back and expect her to defeat the evil whatever.  They also have their own cute relationship.

What I had a problem with?  Well, Lucas and Derek. Not that they both don't have their shining moments, but the drama dragged out way too long.  I mean, Kylie was still agonizing over them in the fifth book.  I was so tired of that particular drama by then, I sort of had to force myself to slog through the parts where she agonized over her torn feelings. 

Second, not enough action.  I get that these books all have some kind  of mystery.  Kylie is warned by a ghost or has to complete that ghost's unfinished business, all of which is connected to her, but the ghosts aren't all that helpful, thus the mystery.  Oh, and there's the mystery of Kylie's supernatural species.  All in all that is good, but it was almost all buildup with very little climax.  The action chapters at the end were too short.  While the mystery built up and there were plenty of mild cliffhangers along the way, the ending wasn't ever as grand or scary as I wanted it to be.

Still, it's a fun series. It's probably a solid 3 stars for me through all three books.  Maybe it just tried to be a little bit too much of everything.  I mean we have vampires, werewolves, witches, ghosts, shape-shifters, fairies, and a super secret new paranormal species all rolled up into one. Still, it's a fun read, and the series is over, so you can enjoy all the books at once without having to deal with horrible cliff hangers that leave you begging for the next book.

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