Also by this author: Nevermore, Oblivion
Series: Nevermore #2
Also in this series: Nevermore, Oblivion
Published by Simon and Schuster on 2013-08-27
Genres: Fantasy & Magic, Horror & Ghost Stories, Love & Romance, Paranormal, Young Adult
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True love takes a twisted turn in the second book of this modern gothic romance trilogy that channels the dark brilliance of Edgar Allan Poe. While Varen remains a prisoner in a perilous dream world where the terrifying stories of Edgar Allan Poe come to life, Isobel travels to Baltimore to confront the dark figure known throughout the world as the Poe Toaster. This man, the same man who once appeared to Isobel in her dreams and abandoned her in Varen’s nightmare world, holds the key to saving Varen. But when Isobel discovers a way to return to this dream world, she finds herself swept up in a realm that not only holds remnants of Edgar Allan Poe’s presence, but one that has taken on the characteristics of Varen’s innermost self. It is a dark world of fear, terror, and anger. When Isobel once more encounters Varen, she finds him changed. And now Isobel must face a new adversary—one who also happens to be her greatest love.
A few years ago, I read Kelly Creagh’s debut novel Nevermore and was head over heels in love with it. I was enamored. I told all my friends they need to read it, and a quite a few did. I found myself on pins and needs for the sequel, I absolutely had to know what happens next to Isobel and Varen. Just my luck though, it turns out the sequel that I preordered, Enshadowed is not even in the ballpark of it’s predecessor. I hate to say this, like it legitimately kills me to say this, but I thought Enshadowed was terrible.
Enshadowed picks up pretty much where Nevermore leaves off. Basically Varen is sucked inside a dreamworld. Isobel is left at home to cheerlead and go to school and figure out how to get Varen out of the dreamworld. Oh, and everyone thinks Varen has run away. Basically the book is super slow and some things happen. Like, Isobel makes a plan to go to Baltimore and visit Poe’s grave in hopes of seeing the Poe toaster aka Reynolds in order to save Varen from the dreamworld. ALSO, she is having visions and is seeing Varen pretty much everywhere. Really, that’s the whole book in a nutshell. OH OH! AND there is Gwen and she is awesome and I was glad to see her play a much bigger role in this book.
To me, I thought sad Isobel was kind of a letdown from the Isobel of Nevermore. Like, she just doesn’t have that page sparkle anymore. Sure, she is determined and that is awesome. She’s working hard to find information and a way to save her love. But, ugh, that’s like all that seems to define her. I mean, she even loses cheerleading and to me that is huge because it defines so much of who she is. I guess as a reader it’s just disappointing to see such a strong character lose herself in pining for a boy, who yeah got sucked into a nightmare for real.
As for Varen, y’all, I thought he had such chemistry with Isobel in Nevermore. It is what kept me turning the pages so fast, the hate blossoming into like and this deep attraction that permeated the pages. But then, ugh, this book. He’s such a douche in Enshadowed. And I get it, he is shadow-Varen and in the nightmare landscape he’s not the same person and he doesn’t trust Isobel and is basically really having an awful go of it. However. HOWEVER. I just miss the character that he was in Nevermore. He was interesting, he got more than five sentences of on page time. In this book, it’s like he’s there for the cover picture and like a few scenes here and there, but that’s it. Such a disappointment.
As for Creagh’s writing style, I think she has a certain talent for description and really chewing up the scenery. However, pacing is not this book’s friend. It took me over a year to read Enshadowed when I read Nevermore in a fever spell in the span of hours. I just think that Enshadowed lacks excitement. It lacks chemistry. It lacks romance. This all said in what is my shortest review in a long time, I will be reading the last book in the series, Oblivion because I need to see how it will all end.