Wednesday, 1 November 2017

Out of the Shadows - Ashlee Nicole Bye



                                Out of the Shadows is a supernatural/fantasy novel aimed at young adults and older. Before reading this book, I read the reviews which mentioned that Ms. Bye wrote a lot like the fantastic YA author Cassandra Clare. I was pleasantly surprised to discover that this comparison rang true. Ms. Bye has created an amazingly entertaining fantasy world called the Shadowlands. The many different species of creatures that live there (dragons, faeries, brownies, Reapers, etc.) can travel into our world via the shadows. They exist among mortals by using glamour that hides their true look except for those that were once human and don’t need to hide their true selves, such as Reapers. The story revolves around a young human female, Sachi, whose best friend Gabe is murdered while out with her one night. More people are suspiciously slashed to death which leaves citizens believing there is a serial killer lurking the in the shadows. Julian and Moss, two Reapers, suspect something else is going on. They also suspect that Sachi is right in the middle of it, considering that she was the person who was supposed to die the night of Gabe’s death instead of him.
                Out of the Shadows is everything that young adults look for in books these days. Due to short chapters, lots of pop culture references and a sharp wit, this book is a fast paced and entertaining read. The characters are very well written, each with his or her own distinct traits that make them interesting and memorable. One of the small details that added to the humour of the book is the titles of the chapters. I’m not usually someone who really pays attention to chapter titles and I usually find them to be a needless waste of text. However, with titles such as “A Knee to the Groin is Always a Safe Bet” from Chapter Nine and “A Dead Girl Walking.AndTalking.And Breathing” from Chapter Twenty-two, I really enjoyed them in this book. The only thing that occasionally interrupted the flow of the story was the constant references to pop culture but I’m sure this wouldn’t bother younger readers at all.
                This is the first book in a series and it ends with a bit of a teaser about the upcoming story as it continues, which seems like it will be another great read.
                I read this in digital format and it translated to my ereader well. The cover is attractive but I’m not sure how eye-catching it will be for YAs.