My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I love a Kindle book bargain--and at $0.00 this one was a steal! Oh, though I do hate falling into the middle of series-- and it seems that this novella falls at 2.5 in Kellison's Shadow series. I take it from reading reviews of other books in this series that I haven't spoiled my fun in reading Shadow Touch first. Good thing!
My, my! This one grabbed me from the very first-- and that is a feat, in and of itself. I love the premise of a woman who has two selves-- her corporeal self, and a shadow self. That Ellie's shadow is the naughty side of her is delectable detail. Sure we have seen a division of selves in other works (Jekyll and Hyde obviously comes to mind...but there are many other examples). I admire how Ellie has tried to keep it together-- even if she can't, in good conscience, meld her shadow with herself. I kept going back and forth trying to decide which was Ellie's true self. Because I have these same struggles (naughty or nice...nice or naughty...dammit, I can't decide. Let's have a glass of milk and ponder this...hehehe), my inclination was to go with the Shadow-- because I wanted to see what further mischief would abound.
Ah, and we come to the hero of this tale-- Cam, a problematic, if well-meaning, hero. It's funny how I felt like I knew how he thinks, when this is such a short story! Some writers seem to have difficulty fleshing out a character in 360+ pages but it is a credit to Kellison's craft that she reveals so much about Cam in such a short story. It doesn't happen often to me, but I was instantly attracted to Cam, and find myself wanting more of him, and his interactions with Ellie.
Let me get down to a few more things I liked about Shadow Touch. There is an overlay of folklore to the Shadow world-- and oh, I love that. Having had folklore as an area of specialty for my English degree I soak up any and all fairytale-like fiction. I like the idea of science investigating magic-- it's a silly indulgence on my part, but maybe some day there will be an intersection of the two beyond (dispelling) alchemy and parapsychology. The small taste of folklore in this story definitely intrigues me enough to want to read the rest of the series.
Something I found amusing is that this is a very sexy story (hmmm, a nude, lascivious Shadow-self--yummy!)but there is nothing graphic about. Oh, there's the tantalizing promise of sex-- Cam, Ellie and the shadow make for a rather interesting menage-a-trollop! But it says a lot for Kellison's talent that she doesn't let sex overwhelm the story, as some less-skilled writers are tempted.
My only disappointment is that I wanted this story to go on and on-- I wanted to know definitely how things turns out and this story ends with a cliffhanger. I guess I will have to appease my curiosity by backtracking to the first books in the Shadow series, and picking up with the newest release. In any case, I am in love with Kellison's characters and story-telling. I'm tickled about having found a new author to follow-- both the naughty and nice in me are undoubtedly hooked!
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