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Son of the Shadows - Juliet Marillier So impressed was I with Sorcha in Daughter of the Forest that I jumped into the sequel with not a glance at the summary. Granted it’s taken me took 2 months before doing so. So, Why the gap if it indeed was that awesome? Simply, it was so intricately plotted my brain reeled; the people in it so real, my heart broke for each thing that happened. By its end, I was exhausted: happy and giddy with the outcome, happy to have met them but also exhausted. This one has left me feeling much the same. Both books don’t limit themselves to magic and fey because things could get and did get ugly, and brutal… so I was gob smacked after each big thing. Still, moving forward is made easy because of the link they had to each other. It’s just one of the things I loved along with some of the magical, some of the political and complicated, and as said, a lot of those connections: romantic or otherwise. Now, if there’s anything to complain about, it’s that that closeness between brother and sister in book 1 isn’t as deeply felt in this one. Like Sorcha, Liadan is the center of the family, but unlike the first, where the brothers are as specifically drawn and thus made individual, Liadan’s brother and sister weren’t. I knew Sorcha’s brothers; I watched them suffer with her. Sean and Niamh were merely extras here pushing Liadan forward. In fact, this is all about Liadan and how she’s her father and mother’s miniature. She is the good daughter, the (too) understanding sister, and then eventually the woman in love. And then came the Painted Man. Plus his Merry Band of what’s it. It’s obvious where things were headed once he’s introduced, but I read on despite the predictability because like her he too is special. They’re perfectly matched: skilled at what they both do, independent and inspiring of loyalty, but unlike her, not untouched by what’s dark. The last is what draws the two closer. Then there are those eventual discoveries on how they’re connected beyond the present romantic; how all of them are in fact linked somehow. I love that. That neat bridging of one thing to another thing is what I enjoy. That truly one person briefly encountered at some point is not just a character but vital the things that follow.4/5