Saturday, September 14, 2013

Serial Killers All Live Next Door To Someone

"This time, everything was going to happen as planned. 
This time, nothing and no one would stop him. 
This time, she would be his."
--Kate Brian, Shadowlands

Genre: YA Contemporary
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion, 328 pages
Publication Date: January 8th, 2013
Source: Borrowed

Goodreads Description

Rory Miller had one chance to fight back and she took it. Rory survived and the serial killer who attacked her escaped. Now that the infamous Steven Nell is on the loose, Rory must enter the witness protection program. Entering the program alongside her, is her father and sister Darcy. The trio starts a new life and a new beginning leaving their friends and family behind without a goodbye.

Starting over in a new town with only each other is unimaginable for Rory and Darcy. They were inseparable as children but now they can barely stand each other. As the sisters settle in to Juniper Landing, a picturesque vacation island, it seems like their new home may be just the fresh start they need. They fall in with a group of beautiful, carefree teens and spend their days surfing, partying on the beach, and hiking into endless sunsets. Just as they’re starting to feel safe again, one of their new friends goes missing. Is it a coincidence? Or is the nightmare beginning all over again?

My Thoughts

I never appreciate how much I love a good suspense thriller-esque book until I’m in the middle of a good one. Shadowlands is just that. After being attacked by a notorious serial killer, Rory is forced to go into witness protection with her father and sister. They end up on Juniper Landing and the story gets odd from there due to the locals strange staring and other things I won’t ruin for you : )

I ripped through this book. It was just over 300 pages and was a super quick read. It kept you on your toes, not a lot of extraneous detail; concise and to the point writing. I liked this. I thought the writing was well thought out and detailed without being overkill. In a place like Juniper Landing, a picturesque beach vacation town, it could have easily gone down the route too much info about the color of the sky, etc. I appreciate writing that deals with less detail, more dialogue and character development. With that said, the description of Juniper Landing was vivid. I could see the town. The adorable shops. The quaint houses. I loved the visualization I got.

The characters were okay for me. I really like Rory because she was the most fleshed out of them all, obvi because she’s the main character. I loved that she was nerdy, more quiet, and very direct. She didn’t give in to the ridiculousness of peer pressure and was much more content with her microscope and doing things she personally enjoyed rather than what she “should” be enjoying. Her sister Darcy was okay. Much more superficial but we definitely saw some cracks in the persona she was pushing to the public. I would really like to see more with her and who she really is. The locals could have done more for me. However, I think the point was that they were supposed to be mysterious, strange, and unable to get a read on. I’m hoping the sequel gives us more insight into what is actually going on with them.

The plot was one that was twisting behind the scenes and you didn’t even know it. Stuff happened that was strange and odd and it wasn’t until the very last sentence that you had any idea what was going on. Well, I mean, I had a guess. Some of the verbage leads you to believe in something. And even at the end, things start to make sense but not really. I both love and hate endings like this because you get a big cliffhanger…but things still don’t add up completely. THANK GOD I have the second book because I need some more pieces to this puzzle.

While the story moved quickly and I enjoyed reading it, the progression of the story felt…aloof to me. I know it was supposed to be weird and unexplainable but it still felt a little spastic. A little more linear progression would have made the story feel more complete and less fragmented.

Should You Read This? Probably. Definitely page turning. Good main character. No romance…yet…but I’m hoping this changed. The ending is almost worth the read. 


  1. If I get to this book, I'll keep in mind to have part 2 ready. If there is something I hate, it's a cliff-hanger! :p

  2. great review! you put your thoughts to into words a little better than I did.. I had to start Hereafter right away, and I'm excited that the third book came out this week too! at the rate I'm going, I'll be all done with the series by the end of the week. enjoyed the review and your site :)


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