Title: Shadows (The Rephaim #1)
Author: Paula Weston
Published: June 1, 2012 Tundra Books
Format: Borrowed from Library, Hardcover
My rating: 4/5 stars
Normally I would start off by saying that this is the story of Gaby, a girl who was in a tragic car accident that killed her twin brother Jude. This is true, but I feel like it is also more than just her story as we get to know all of the supporting characters so well too. After Gaby’s accident she moves to a new town to start fresh and that’s where she meets her best friend Maggie. The two of them have fun and look out for each other. They’re also friends with the local bartender, Simon, who also has a crush on Gaby. Gaby is having a hard time getting over losing her brother but she is starting to move on when the mysterious Rafa shows up. When Rafa shows up Gaby isn’t sure what to think. He clearly knows her brother and he looks exactly like the guy she has been dreaming about. What is going on? What memories can she trust…and who can she trust?
So clearly I may be a little late to the party with this series but I am so glad I found it and its all thanks to my goodreads recommendations. I’ve read a few books involving angels before and a lot of times it’s just a love story with the word angel thrown in there as a reason to give one of the main characters some sort of special gift or powers. I don’t want to be negative towards the entire angel genre because there have been many books that I’ve enjoyed, but this one is by far one of my favorites. The details in this books really made me fall in love. Very quickly you start to become invested in all the characters and they start to feel like your friends too. The more you read the more details you get about this world that Gaby doesn’t remember ever being a part of… and the longer I read the more I felt myself being sucked into this world. Now I love how real the author made this world but I think one of the only reasons I didn’t give this 5 stars is because at times it became a little confusing. At some points I was like wait who is this person and where do they fit in in this whole rephaim society….they’re on what side? Now this may not be a negative for everyone, and if I find this whole world confusing and complex I could only imagine how Gaby would feel. So although I did find myself struggling at some points overall I was impressed with the descriptions given of this world and the people in it.
Now I love a good mystery and this one has so many! A book needs more than just some interesting characters and a great setting, it needs a story that keeps you intrigued. I’ll try not to give away too much here but we start off with the obvious… why don’t Gaby’s memories align with everyone else’s version of things. Who can she trust? What were her and Jude really up to before the accident? We get so many more as the story progresses too. I absolutely love that every time Gaby seems to begin to understand one mystery something else came up that made Gaby, and the reader, need to delve further into this world.
I have grown to care about so many of these characters and love that none of their stories seem to be forgotten as the book goes on. Too many times a lot of these supporting characters seem to be left by the wayside when all the action starts to pick up. The ending left me wanting more and even though I wish I had discovered this book sooner I’m glad that the next two books are already out. I plan on doing some major binge reading! If you haven’t picked up this series yet I recommend checking it out, it has a little bit of something for everyone.