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Dark Tones

Shadowsong, S. Jae-Jones’ sequel to Wintersong, is a shadow of its predecessor.

Dark Tones

BOOK REPORT for Shadowsong (Wintersong #2) by S. Jae-Jones

Cover Story: Breaking Through
BFF Charm: Confused
Swoonworthy Scale: 1
Talky Talk: In Her Head
Bonus Factor: Brothers and Sisters
Relationship Status: One Date Too Many

Danger, Will Robinson! Shadowsong is the second book in the Wintersong duology. If you have not read the first book in the series—Wintersong—turn away now. Do not pass go, do not collect $200. If you have read the first book, however, feel free to continue below.

Trigger Warning: There are instances of suicidal thoughts and evidence of self harm in Shadowsong that might be triggering for some readers.

Cover Story: Breaking Through

Where the cover of Wintersong is extremely wintry and frozen-feeling, this cover is warmer, and the shattering of the snowglobe along with the poppies makes me think of spring.

The Deal:

After becoming the Goblin Queen and falling in love with the man behind the Der Erlkönig myth, Liesl left the Underground without looking back. But just because she didn’t literally look behind her doesn’t mean that her thoughts aren’t still with the Goblin King. She’s trying to move on, but it’s hard when part of her doesn’t want to.

When she gets a letter, supposedly from Josef, telling her to come to Vienna immediately, a chain of events sets off that will tests Liesl’s strength—body, mind and soul.

BFF Charm: Confused

Liesl and I got along well enough in Wintersong, but she spent much of Shadowsong wrapped up in her emotions and in her own head. She barely had time for her siblings, much less friends. I’d certainly want to try to help her work through her demons, but as I’m not a professional, I’m not sure I’d be much help.

Swoonworthy Scale: 1

Shadowsong was a drastic departure from Wintersong in more ways than one, but nowhere was it more apparent than the lack of swoon. Liesl and her “austere young man” are separated, and she’s preoccupied with figuring out her relationship with her siblings, how to keep her family’s head above figurative water, and what to do about her growing internal struggle. I missed their enemistry greatly

Talky Talk: In Her Head

Although Shadowsong is once again a historical fantasy novel, this time taking place in Vienna and the nearby countryside, the world building and atmosphere took a backseat to Liesl’s identity crisis. Because of this, the plot kind of wandered and plodded along, and the resolution happened too quickly in the last 50 or so pages. Shadowsong is missing a lot of the magic of its predecessor.

Bonus Factor: Brothers and Sisters

Liesl’s relationship with her sister Kathë and brother Josef is sometimes strained, sometimes beautiful. I’m an only child, so I have little practice with sibling relationships, but theirs felt quite real.

Relationship Status: One Date Too Many

After our first date, Book, I was enamoured and satisfied; I didn’t really see the need for a second. But I gave it a go, and I’m honestly a little bummed that our second date has dimmed my find memories of the first.

FTC Full Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from Wednesday Books, but got neither a private dance party with Tom Hiddleston nor money in exchange for this review. Shadowsong is available now.

Mandy Curtis's photo About the Author: Mandy is a small town girl living in a nerdy world, or—if you want to get literal—an editor/writer living in Austin, TX. In addition to yearning for YA books—the more dystopian or fantastical, the better—she can also be found swooning over superheroes, dreaming of The Doctor and grinning at GIFs.
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