Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Book Review: The Crowded Shadows

The Crowded Shadows

By:  Celine Kiernan

Publisher:  Orbit Books

Publish Date:  July 1, 2010

Genre:  Fantasy

Format:  Paperback, 474 pgs - 5 1/2" x 8"

Series:  2nd in The Moorehawke Trilogy, review of 1st book ~ Poison Throne here.

Recommendation:  YES!!  If you love wonderful characters and writing that will just absorb you into their world, start with the first book Poison Throne then dive right into this one.  This is a fantastic fantasy journey to take!

Book Synopsis:
Every tyrant who ever threatened the Kingdom is gathering to Alberon's table, and the forest is alive with spies, wolves and bandits. Within these crowded shadows, Protector Lady Wynter Moorehawke travels alone and unprotected, determined that she shall find the rebel prince and heal the rift that has come between the King and his legitimate heir. But who is an ally and who is a foe? In this, the second of The Moorehawke Trilogy, old friends and even older enemies ensure that Wynter is never certain of who she can trust.

First Sentence:
Wynter sank closer to Ozkar's neck and slowly dipped her head so that the dark brim of her hat hid her eyes.

My Review and Synopsis:
We start off right where Poison Throne left off.  Wynter is traveling alone in the dense forests to find the adored and disowned Rebel Prince Alberon.  Wynter has many worries and trials while traveling through the crowded forest.  She never imagined the woods in this direction to be so full of people... people who just may not be welcome in the Kingdoms lands.  There is much more going on in the woods of the Kingdom than anyone ever expected.  In the shadows of the Kingdom Forests there are many new worries and Wynter, Razi, and Christopher find themselves in the middle.

This book is of the tribulations and trials the characters undergo while traveling alone in the dangerous forests of the Kingdom.  You see that word has traveled far and wide that there is chaos in the Kingdoms lands and in other parts of the world as well.  But this book focuses on our main characters.  This is the middle child, being a second book, but this is the next section of the story in getting to the end results - getting to the Rebel Prince Alberon and seeing chaos has erupted in the kingdom.  This book has a wonderful story to tell and add to the trilogy.  As we don't hear much of the Bloody Machine or meet the Rebel Prince Alberon yet, we do see that Alberon is bringing many different cultures; ally and enemy alike to his table.  What is this young man up to?

Celine pulls the punches from the start.  Right into the troubles and worries of Wynter's along with all the new ones in the crowded woods she's traveling in.

I just have to say off the start here, I loved this book, and for many reasons.  Now I will try to not to gosh my love to much after stating this here. :)

I was so drawn into this book that my whole house could have burnt down around me, and I would not have known.  Celine's writing style flowed very nicely for me, very fluint and absorbing.  I could easily visualize everthing in my mind through Celine's writing.  I love when I can easily see what is going on, it makes the story flow faster for me.  I found myself going back and rereading sections of the book; NOT because I was lost but because I loved them fore how they where worded, the meaning in them, or from the shock of the happening.

The characters are amazing and I really started to see much more going on in the woods of the kingdom.  I learned more of the characters and really feel in love with them - all old and new.  The story built on the suspense of the dark forest and had me worried for the characters, not knowing why I was worried but feeling is through the writing.  But then in the end I got all my explainations and answers for the worries.  The building of the cultures and world was amazing.  Through learning more of the Merron people, and Christopher, I also learned of the cultures of the others by the way they reacted and compared the Merron religion to.

This story had a quick pace for me, even though it was 474 pages.  And there was lots happening to keep me wanting more.  The momentum kept going and I just couldn't put the book down.  Then there were a few unexpected twists to the story as well, which made me love it even more.

This book qualifies for my Speculated Fiction Challenge hosted by Book Chick City.


  1. I didn't read the review because I haven't yet read The Poison Throne but your obvious enjoyment of these books has made me push them up to the top of my TBR pile. Hope to get to them soon!

  2. Simcha - That is good. :) I hope you do come back and read the review later. I hope you enjoy these books as much as I did as well. :) Enjoy!

  3. I've been flirting with this series for a while on amazon, might need to take the plunge and get them! though i didnt read the review either to avoid any spoilage hehe =)))


  4. Larissa - Go get this series! :) The Third one comes out in October. So they are all being published close together as well. :) Did you take the link to read the review of the first book, Poison Throne? The link is up under the series mark. I hope you enjoy this series as much as I did. :) I tried to keep this spoiler free, but if you haven't read the first book... I don't know. :) Thanks!

  5. Great review. Wow, sounds like a great book. I will really have to keep this one on my wishlist! Glad to see you liked it so much!

  6. Melissa - I think you might enjoy this trilogy. Now I can't wait for book three in October. I hope you get it and give it a try. :) Thanks!

  7. Hi Melissa,
    This just makes me want to read the second book more now!
    I'm waiting for Book Chick City to send it to me for review. But it's definitely on the top of my tbr list :)

  8. Hi Laura! You're going to have to ask Book Chick City to send it asap. :) I really loved the surprises and turns in this book. You will love this one when you get it. :) Enjoy! And thank you for stopping by! Always great to have visitors.


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