7 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful
Tiffany C. (piekid) reviewed Shadow Dawn (Chronicles of the Shadow War, Book 2) on
Helpful Score: 3
I seriously enjoyed the movie "Willow"; this book is the second in a series of three ("Shadow Moon" and "Shadow Star" are the other two) that supposedly continues Willow's story. I've wanted to read these books for a while, because the movie *sorta* left me with a question or two. All this series did was CONFUSE me. I'm an avid fantasy reader, so it's not like these are out of my genre, but the way the books are written, the "explanation" of how the "magic" works, even the events in the book, are so boring and confusing that after I forced my way through the first book I had no desire to read this one. It took me a year and major desperation for something to read before I picked it up. Two and a half years after I forced my way through this book, I finally read the last one. Wasted time. I enjoyed the side panel of my cereal box more than this series. There was serious potential after the awesome movie, but they missed the mark by a mile with this series.
The Shadow War books, and Shadow Dawn in particular, are roiling balls of urgent and dizzyingly vivid action narrative. The character development, with the possible exception of the young demon-warrior Khory Bannefin, is a little stunted in comparison with the rich and dynamic accounts of the action sequences and the vast detail of the world-building. This can be frustrating at times because the characters are so intriguing and seem to hold so much promise, yet the reader becomes so little privy to their motivations.
For example, the unexpected and unfulfilled love that develops between Willow, the wandering wizard, and the fierce warrior princess Anakerie could be very intriguing for its potential to unravel the mysteries of their internal drives. Also, it feels quite authentic to their situations and what we do know of their characters, as honorable combatants forced by circumstance into opposing one another yet unable to overpower their mutual respect. But the narrative seems to leap right from a hasty construction of their situation in reluctant conflict with one another, to the premise that, mostly offscreen, ah well now they've become smitten with one another (poof!).
Towards the end of the book, however, heroine Elora Danaan's character finally begins to blossom both in the depth with which it's explored as well as in her growing emotional and mental maturity. She is finally coping with the difficult ethical questions which permeate her existence, and is quite the better for it. I'm hopeful that Book 3 will continue to bring a little more depth to the fantasy action adventure as our heroes seek to thwart those who wish to maroon the worlds of humans, elves, and other fairy creatures, separate from one another rather than in the state of overlapping though oft uneasy coexistence in which they truly belong.